Eltham Palace and Gardens

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Court Yard, London, United Kingdom
020 8294 2548

Eltham Palace and Gardens London Reviews

Vikram Vikram
306 reviews
Don't blame Eltham Palace cos the 1900s were so damn boring! Oct 29, 2012
In 1933, Stephen Courtauld and his wife Virginia Courtauld (née Peirano) acquired the lease of Eltham Palace and restored the Great Hall (adding a minstrels' gallery to it) while building an elaborate home, internally in the Art Deco style. The dramatic Entrance Hall was created by the Swedish designer Rolf Engströmer. DON'T BLAME THEM!

You can read the history and all the accolades in this Wiki link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eltham_Palace, but sadly, colour me a bit dissapointed.

Right from the time a good friend of mine had mentioned visiting this place, I wanted to go too. Not because it sounded exciting or anything, but because it was one more in the checklist. So this trip seemed the ideal time to do it – the London Pass book mentioned where it was, but I wasn’t sure how to connect to it from Greenwich which is why I chose to go to London Bridge and caught the train to Eltham. Walking from the train station to the palace was a piece of cake, and not as long as some people had mentioned it would be.

The palace by itself is very dry – again, not that it’s bad - its supposed to give you a glimpse of a “modern day” home from the 1930s. I just realised that I’m not a 20th century person. I so much prefer the quaint pre-19th century castles and artwork. The fee is 10 quid which I thought was quite expensive.

You walk in, you’re ushered in with a guide but no map of the place and you walk around. There were various rooms – the boudoir, the his and hers rooms, the living room, study room, etc. and I bet for that time, it was very modern. I just think I didn’t personally find rooms with wooden sliders and stuff very impressive. There was also a section of how they family would gather around on Fri nites for British movies. Again, very middling. I was amused by the section of their Madagascar animal who had a heated cage (forgot the animal name, it was like a monkey) and how they took him on a sailing trip, and he bit a sailor who took 4-5 weeks to recover after he was allergic to the medicines. That was the highlight!

Besides that, it was quite boring. What was worse was the “garden” – it was not only small, but also slippery and lacking in the kind of colour and design one has come to see in other palaces. Of course, it was the last week of Oct so that could explain the lack of greenery. The thing that was most exciting for me was a visit to the palace canteen, where I had some amazing Victorian sandwich cake. It wasn’t as good as the one I had in Winchester, but seriously, Victorian sandwich cakes are so hard to come by these days!
8 / 8 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
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