Buckingham Palace is the official residence of the Queen in London. It is also used for official ceremonies, State visits and sightseeing. It is famous for hosting a substantial part of the Royal Collection, an extraordinary selection of artistic works resulting from royal collecting. The Palace, originally known as Buckingham House, was initially a petit hotel built for the first duke of Buckingham in 1703 and acquired by King George III in 1762 to make it a private residence. In the following 75 years it underwent a series of expansions directed by the architects John Nash and Edward Blore (1850), creating three wings forming an open central patio. With the arrival of the throne of Queen Victoria of England, Buckingham Palace became the official residence of the monarchy. During the nineteenth and twentieth centuries some reforms were made in the palace, like the one carried out in 1912 (in charge of Aston Webb) and which gave the palace its current main façade, including the balcony from where the royal family greets. The original Georgian interior from the nineteenth century is still preserved; it is composed of bright plaster inlaid with blue and pink lapis lazuli. Edward VII redecorated the palace adding a Belle Époque decoration in cream and golden tones. Some reception rooms are decorated in a Chinese style with furniture from the royal pavilion of Brighton and Carlton house. The palace has 775 rooms and the palace gardens are the largest private gardens in London. The artificial lake was created in 1828 and it receives water from Lake Serpentine, the lake located in Hyde Park. The first building built on the site the palace is now stands was Goring house, built in 1633 by Lord Goring. However, the house that constitutes the original foundation of the palace was built by the Duke of Buckingham in 1703. The first building built on the site the palace is now stands was Goring house, built in 1633 by Lord Goring. However, the house that constitutes the original foundation of the palace was built by the Duke of Buckingham in 1703. This house was designed by architect William Winde, building a large central block of three floors and two smaller annex buildings. The house was sold by his son to King George III in 1762. It was intended to use the building as a private residence for the royal family, particularly for Queen Charlotte. Meanwhile, St. James Palace would be continued to be used as an official and ceremonial residence of the King. In fact, current ambassadors are accredited to the “St. James court”, even if it is Buckingham where they present their credentials to the Queen. Queen Charlotte died in 1818 and two years later her husband George III. The heir, George IV decided to expand Buckingham to assign it with St. James to state acts, but in 1826 he decided to turn Buckingham Palace into a royal palace. Two more wings were created leaving an open inner courtyard. This is the structure that is maintained until today. In that place was an impressive arch of triumph inspired by the Arch of Constantine of Rome, whose cost was $34.450 British pounds. George IV wanted to crown it with an equestrian statue of him. However, the monarch died earlier and the Parliament decided to install his statue in Trafalgar Square. Although kings celebrate acts and receptions in the Palace’s halls of State, they never resided in it, since they preferred Clarence House. Most of the reception halls were furnished at that time and they are still in use today. They use a Chinese style with furniture from the royal pavilion of Brighton and Carlton House. With the arrival of Queen Victoria to the throne in 1837, Buckingham Palace went on to become a royal residence. While the halls of State were characterized by the infinity colors, the needs of the new palace were less luxurious. With the arrival of Queen Victoria to the throne in 1837, Buckingham Palace went on to become a royal residence. While the halls of State were characterized by the infinity colors, the needs of the new palace were less luxurious. The great east wing of the palace (currently the main façade of it) was built after Queen Victoria’s marriage. In 1847, the couple found the palace too small for the life of the court and its growing family. So it was decided to close the patio and turn it into an inner courtyard. In this wing there is a balcony from which the royal family greets its subjects. Since before Prince Albert’s death, Queen Victoria’s passion for music and dance was well known, so the great musicians of that time were taken into the palace to perform their works. Mendelssohn performed on three occasions, Strauss and his orchestra performed in the palace when the composer’s play, “Alice Polka”, was released in honor of Princess Alicia. During that time, the Palace of Buckingham was the stage of imposing dances, routine royal ceremonies, investitures and presentations. After the death of her husband, Queen Victoria left Buckingham and moved to Windsor Castle. The activity of the court continued to take place in Windsor Castle, and Buckingham was relegated to Queen Victoria’s shadow. In 1901, King Edward VII arrived to the throne, bringing life into the palace. The new king and his wife Queen Alexandra were the exponent of the British upper class and their group of friends, known as the group of Marlborough House, were considered the most eminent people of the time. During World War I the Palace, at that time the residence of King George’s V and Queen Mary, was not bombed. The objects of greater value from the Royal Collection were evacuated to Windsor but the royal family stayed in London. On May 8, 1945 the Palace was the center of British celebrations, with the King, the Queen, Princess Elizabeth (future Queen), and Princess Margaret waving from the balcony, with shattered windows behind them. During the present reign, the ceremonies of the court have undergone a radical change and the entrance to the palace is not reserved simply to the upper class. The royal dresses of the court have been abolished. Nowadays, most of the men invited to Buckingham wear a jacket for the day and at night, depending of the occasion they wear a black or white tie. If the occasion is a white tie, women, if they have it, should wear a tiara even when there is no dress code established. Nowadays, most of the men invited to Buckingham wear a jacket for the day and at night, depending of the occasion they wear a black or white tie. If the occasion is a white tie, women, if they have it, should wear a tiara even when there is no dress code established. One of the biggest changes occurred in 1958 when the Queen abolished the presentations to society. In these presentations to society young aristocrats were presented to the monarchy. They took place in the Throne Room. The young ladies entered and bowed, and then they moved backwards performing a choreography with the tails of their dresses (which had a certain length) and repeated the reference before the Queen. The ceremony was very pompous so the Queen decided to eliminate it since she considered it elitist and typical of antiquity. They were replaced by garden parties, more frequent and to which a broader spectrum of the British society can go. The Throne Room is currently used for special visits to the Queen as recently in her jubilee. It is in this room where pictures are taken for royal weddings. The investitures, which include the appointments of knights, with the traditional imposition of the sword, are held in the Victorian ballroom, built in 1854. With dimensions of 37 by 20 meters, it is the largest room in the palace. During the investitures, the Queen does not sit in the throne; she stands in front of the platform, under a large vaulted velvet pavilion called shamiana or baldachin used in the coronation of King George V as emperor in the Durbar of Delhi in 1911. A military band performs at the musicians’ gallery while those who receive decorations approach the Queen and receive their honors, being seen by their families and friends. The Beatles were the first artists not consecrated to receive honors. Gala banquets also take place in the Ballroom. These dinners take place the first night of stay of the visiting head of state. On those occasions, there are more than 150 guests with white ties and women with tiaras. Dinner is served in gold crockery. The largest and more formal reception that takes place in Buckingham Palace is in November, when the Queen receives the diplomatic corps residing in London. On this occasion, all state rooms are used, since the royal family passes through them all, initiating a procession through the large north doors of the painting gallery. Other smaller ceremonies take place in Room 1844. Luncheons and some meetings are held there. Other larger luncheons take place in the vaulted music room, or in the state dining room. On all formal occasions employees wear special clothing. Since the bombing of the chapel in World War II, family liturgical celebrations take place in the music room. The Queen’s first three children were baptized there, in a special golden fountain. Prince William was baptized in the same room but his brother was baptized in the Chapel of St. George of Windsor. The biggest ceremonies of the year are the garden parties, where 9 thousand people gather to have tea and sandwiches. Once the guests arrive, the national anthem sounds and the Queen comes out from the Arch room. She passes through the guests greeting some previously selected ones and inviting them to a special area for tea. If the guests are not lucky enough to have an encounter with the Queen, at least they have the satisfaction of admiring the gardens. Virtual Reality (VR) Virtual reality images for virtual reality glasses viewing in mobile devices There are no limits to see the world: live the experience by yourself in virtual reality ! Join us ! Little Planet Photo Gallery How was this Virtual Tour made
 
A great fire scourged the city of London in England from September 2 to September 5, 1666. The fire destroyed the center of the medieval town within the old roman wall. It threatened but did not reach the new aristocratic district of Westminster, the royal palace of Whitehall and most of the suburban settlements in London. It was one of the greatest calamities in London history. The fire destroyed 13,200 houses, 87 churches, 44 old Guild Houses, the Custom House, St. Paul Cathedra, London City Hall, the correctional palace of the medieval center and other prisons, four bridges over the rivers Thames and Fleet, as well as three city gates. It was one of the greatest calamities in London history. The fire destroyed 13,200 houses, 87 churches, 44 old Guild Houses, the Custom House, St. Paul Cathedra, London City Hall, the correctional palace of the medieval center and other prisons, four bridges over the rivers Thames and Fleet, as well as three city gates. It left about eighty thousand people homeless, a sixth part of the inhabitants of the town at the time. The amount of deaths caused by the fire remains unknown, and it was thought that it had been small because only a few of them had been registered. This reasoning has been recently challenged by considering that the death of the poor and the middle class were not registered, and that the heat could have incinerated many victims beyond the point of recognition. The fire started in the early morning of September 2, 1666. It started at Thomas Farriner’s bakery in Pudding Lane, shortly after midnight on Sunday, and propagated rapidly. The use of the main firefighting technique of the time, the creation of firewalls through demolition, was delayed due to indecision from the Mayor of London, Sir Thomas Bloodworth. By the time, the large scale demolitions were ordered on Sunday night, the wind had already turned the house fire into an igneous storm that overcame such attempts to quell it. On Monday, the fire advanced north, towards the heart of the city. In the streets, riots began to form because of the rumors that said that foreigners had lit the original fire. Suspicions were aimed towards the Frenchmen and the Dutchmen, enemies of England in the then ongoing Second English-Dutch War. These groups of migrants were victims of street violence and lynching. On Tuesday, the fire extended by most of the town, destroying the gothic St. Paul Cathedral and crossing the Fleet river to threaten Charles II’s Royal Court in Whitehall, while the coordinated efforts in the fight against the fire took simultaneous action. The battle to quell the fire is considered to have been won because of two factors: the strong east wind stopped, and the garrison from London Tower used gunpowder to create effective firewalls to stop the additional extension of the fire to the east. The social and economic issues created by this disaster were overwhelming. The king encouraged evacuating the city and settling in other places, because he feared a rebellion in London amongst the homeless refugees. Despite the numerous radical proposals, London was rebuilt essentially in the same plane of the old streets used before the Fire. The Monument to the Great London Fire is a Doric column that stands 200 feet tall and can be found in London City, near London Bridge. It lies in the intersection of Monument Street and Fish Street Hills, 200 feet from where the Great London Fire started in 1666. The Monument to the Great London Fire is a Doric column that stands 200 feet tall and can be found in London City, near London Bridge. It lies in the intersection of Monument Street and Fish Street Hills, 200 feet from where the Great London Fire started in 1666. Another monument, the Pye Corner’s Golden Man, marks the place where the fire ended. The monument consists of a large Doric column built on Portland stone and crowned by a golden urn in the shape of a fire; it was designed by Christopher Wren and Robert Hooke. The west side of the base of the monument shows an emblematic sculpture by Caius Gabriel Cibber, with high and low reliefs that represent the destruction of the City; with King Charles II and his brother Jacob, Duke of York, surrounded by Freedom, Architecture and Science, giving instructions for the rebuilding of the city. Its 200 feet mark the distance from the monument to Thomas Farynor, the King’s Bakery in Pudding Lane, where the fire started. At the time of building (between 1671 and 1677), it was the world’s tallest independent column. It is possible to reach the top of the monument by climbing a narrow spiral staircase, of 311 steps. Halfway through the XIX century, bars were added to the top of the monument to keep people from jumping off it, after six people committed suicide from 1788 to 1842. Three of the sides of the monument’s base have inscriptions in Latin. The south side describes the actions undertaken by Charles II after the fire. The east side describes how the monument was built and who was the Mayor. The north side describes how the fire started, the damages it caused and how it was extinguished. The first Rebuilding Act, approved in 1669, stipulates that “the best way to preserve the memory of this terrible happenstance” was for a bronze or stone column to be created in Fish Street Hill, in or near the Farryner bakery, where the fire started. Wren was asked, as the General Supervisor of the King’s Works, to propose a design. It was not until 1671, when the City Council approved of said design, and six more years passed until the 200 feet column was finished. Virtual Reality (VR) Virtual reality images for virtual reality glasses viewing in mobile devices There are no limits to see the world: live the experience by yourself in virtual reality ! Join us ! 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City Hall is the House of Assembly of London and preserves the offices of the great London Authority like the mayor's office and staff. It is in the center of the most urbanised plan of London, a new working community located on the south bank of the River Thames, between the London and Tower Bridge. It’s a modern building build by a recognized architect Norman Foster, the same architect that designed the Milenio of London Bridge and remodeled the Reichstag emblematic (German Parliament of Berlín). It’s a modern building build by a recognized architect Norman Foster, the same architect that designed the Milenio of London Bridge and remodeled the Reichstag emblematic (German Parliament of Berlín). The building inaugurated in the year 2002, accompanied by some controversy among the population due to its curious appearance. Some call it "the onion", others "the motorcycle helmet". Located in a strategic location on the cultural route that leads from the Tate Modern, through the Globe Theater and Southwark Cathedral to HMS Belfast and the Design Museum, the London project has played a crucial role in the socio-economic regeneration of the municipality of Southwark. City Hall, one of the newest projects with greater symbolic relevance for the capital of the United Kingdom, delves into issues explored in the Reichstag and communicates the transparency and accessibility of the democratic process, while demonstrating the potential of public building that is sustainable and practically non-polluting. Designed by advanced techniques of infographic layouts represents a new radical plantation of the architectonic form. Its shape achieves an optimal energy performance since it maximizes the protection against the sun and minimizes the surface exposed to direct sunlight. The building measures about 45 meters of height in what is divided in 10 floors. In addition, through which runs a long spiral staircase 500 meters long. At the top, there is an exhibition and a meeting room called London's Living Room, with an open viewpoint that sometimes is available to the public. The building measures about 45 meters of height in what is divided in 10 floors, through which runs a long spiral staircase 500 meters long. At the top there is an exhibition and meeting room called London's Living Room, with an open viewpoint that sometimes is available to the public. The offices are naturally ventilated with the entrance of air, the energy is obtained from photovoltaic panels and the cooling system of the building uses groundwater pumped through drilling wells. Overall, City Hall uses only a quarter of the energy consumed by a typical London office building with air conditioning. With around 15,000 employees, More London integrates a wide variety of uses within a new network of streets and public spaces. The imposing diagonal boulevard that follows the ideal pedestrian route between the London Bridge station and the Tower Bridge is interspersed with alleys and smaller routes that forge links between the activity-taking place on the dock and the residential community of Bermondsey. The landscaping of the streets and esplanades includes trees and aquatic elements and extends to the design of pavement and urban furniture. In addition to offices, there are shops, restaurants and coffee shops, and the urban project includes the Unicorn Children's Theater, a hotel, a supermarket and a gym. The combination of all this helps to generate a lively and pleasant social environment on the banks of the river. Virtual Reality (VR) Virtual reality images for virtual reality glasses viewing in mobile devices There are no limits to see the world: live the experience by yourself in virtual reality ! Join us ! Little Planet Photo Gallery How was this Virtual Tour made
 
The Saint Paul’s Cathedral is the most important church for the London people. The Westminster Abbey was always the church of the monarchy and the aristocracy while St. Paul was the church of the people. In this Cathedral events of national importance have been held, such as the funerals of the two greatest military heroes of the country, Duke of Wellington and Admiral Nelson, as well as the funeral of Sir Winston Churchill, and also the wedding of Prince Charles and Princess Diana. With a height of 110 meters, the Cathedral of St. Paul is the second largest Cathedral in the world, just behind the Basilica of St. Peter in Rome. This Cathedral is a masterpiece of Christopher Wren. With a height of 110 meters, the Cathedral of St. Paul is the second largest cathedral in the world, just behind the Basilica of St. Peter in Rome. This Cathedral is a masterpiece of Christopher Wren. Architecturally this Cathedral is one of the most admired buildings in the United Kingdom. There is an access to the main floor with all its monuments, to the crypt where are the tombs of Nelson, Wellington and the father of penicillin (Alexander Fleming) among other great people of the country. You can also go up to the dome (one of the largest in the world) and from its external viewpoint, you can enjoy one of the best views of London, after climbing more than 500 steps. The entrance also includes an interactive audio guide with very good explanations of the different areas and areas of the cathedral available in 12 different languages, including Spanish. Religious buildings have occupied the site where the Saint Paul Cathedral is located since time immemorial, ever since it was the place chosen to place a dolmen and later a Greek temple. The temple was replaced by the oldest church in England, built in 604. A.C. The cathedral, built of wood, was one of the many buildings affected by the fire of 1666 and had to be rebuilt on different occasions until it became the impressive current building, erected between 1676 and 1710. The cathedral, built of wood, was one of the many buildings affected by the fire of 1666 and had to be rebuilt on different occasions until it became the impressive current building, erected between 1676 and 1710. he Cathedral of Saint Paul is a huge temple with a cross-shaped floor plan that presents a striking decoration, especially in the beautiful ceilings decorated with frescoes. Probably the main attraction of the cathedral is its great dome, composed of three circular galleries. After a climb of 257 steps, you reach the first of them, the Gallery of the Whispers, located 30 meters high. It is a place with incredible acoustics in which you can hear even the slightest sound produced at the opposite end of the dome. After climbing 376 more steps, you reach the Stone Gallery, which offers pleasant views from the outside of the dome, although those of the Golden Gallery surpass these, located 85 meters high. The insides of the Saint Paul Cathedral are perforated forming a large crypt in which some fragments of the previous temples and different monuments and memorials are preserved, as well as the remains of some great British characters such as Nelson, Wellington or Churchill. Virtual Reality (VR) Virtual reality images for virtual reality glasses viewing in mobile devices There are no limits to see the world: live the experience by yourself in virtual reality ! Join us ! Little Planet Photo Gallery How was this Virtual Tour made
 
In the center of the city of London is one of the best sites known as the Piccadilly Circus which was built in 1819 to connect two of the main streets of that time, Regent Street and Piccadilly, it currently communicates with the theaters located on Shaftesbury Avenue and the Haymarket, Coventry Street and Glasshouse Street. Its proximities to the main shopping and entertainment areas, it is a central location in the heart of the West End, and the fact that it is the largest intersection of traffic have made Piccadilly Circus an important meeting point also a tourist attraction in itself. This intersection is known for its large video screens and neon billboards, as well as the Shaftesbury memorial fountain and the statue known as Eros. It is surrounded by a large number of remarkable buildings, including the London Pavilion and the Criterion Theater. This intersection is known for its large video screens and neon billboards, as well as for the Shaftesbury memorial fountain and the statue known as Eros. It is surrounded by a large number of remarkable buildings, including the London Pavilion and the Criterion Theater. Under the square is the Piccadilly Circus station of the London Underground. In 1626 the Piccadilly Hall, belonging to Robert Baker, a famous tailor for selling piccadillies, term used to name several types of neck. The crossing laced to a circular shape in 1886 with the construction of Shaftesbury Avenue. The union of these streets has endured a very dense traffic flow since its construction as it stands in the center of Theatreland, the main theater district of London; it supports outbound traffic from Piccadilly. The Piccadilly Circus Underground Station was opened on March 10, 1906 at the Bakerloo Line, and on the Piccadilly Line in December of that year in 1928 the station was largely rebuilt to with stand and increase traffic. The first electric signs of the intersection appeared in 1910, and in 1923 electric billboards were placed on the facade of the London Pavilion. The first traffic lights were installed on August 3rd in 1926 on the intersection. The Shaftesbury Memorial Fountain at Piccadilly Circus started in use on 1893. During the Second World War, the statue above the fountain was replaced by billboards until 1948, when it was returned. During the reconstruction work of the "circus" in the past 80s, the entire source was moved from the center of the union, at the beginning of Shaftesbury Avenue, to its current position. On the southwestern side of the Circus, moved from its original central position, is the memorial fountain to the Shaftesbury Monument, used in 1886-1893 to commemorate Lord Shaftesbury's philanthropist work. The statue of Alfred Gilbert represents a nude statue in flight, officially known as The Angel of Christian Charity. Popularly known as Eros after the mythical Greek God of Love. The statue has become an icon of London and is fixed to a bronze fountain. The use of a naked figure in a public monument generated controversy at the time of its construction, but it was well received by the public. The Criterion Theater, a prominently grade two building, is located on the south face of Piccadilly Circus. Apart from the box office area, the entire theater, with approximately 600 seats, is underground and is reached by a descendant tile staircase. The Criterion Theater, a prominently grade two building, is located on the south face of Piccadilly Circus. Apart from the box office area, the entire theater, with approximately 600 seats, is underground and is reached by a descendant tile staircase. The columns are used to support both the box and vault area, restricting the visibility of many of the interior seats. The theater was designed by Thomas Verity and opened as a theater on March 21, 1874, although the original plans consisted of turning it into a concert hall. In 1883 it was forced to close to improve ventilation and to replace the gas lamps with electric lights, it was re-opened the following year. The theater closed in 1989 and was extensively restored, re-opening in October 1992. On the northeast side of Piccadilly Circus, at the corner between Shaftesbury Avenue and Coventry Street, is the London Pavilion. The first building to bear this name was built in 1859, and was a music hall. In 1885, Shaftesbury Avenue was built where Pavilion was located. A new London Pavilion was built, which was also used as a music hall. In 1923, electrical announcements were installed on the facade of the building. n 1934, the building underwent a significant structural alteration and converted into a movie theater. In 1986, the building was remodeled, preserving the facade of 1885, and converted into a shopping place. In 2000, the building was joined by the neighboring Trocadero Center, and the building's sign then modified in 2003 to "London Trocadero". The basement of the building connects with the Piccadilly Circus metro station. The most important store previously Tower Records, now acquired by Virgin Megastore, is located at Number 1 Piccadilly, on the west side between Regent Street and Piccadilly, directly facing Piccadilly Circus. There is a direct exit to the metro station in the basement. The store that makes competition, HMV also has an access inside the London Trocadero. illywhites is the largest retail store of sports equipment located on the south side, near the Shaftesbury fountain. It was moved to its current place in 1925. The Piccadilly Circus tube station of the London Underground is directly under Piccadilly Circus itself, with entrances on each corner. It is one of the few stations that do not have associated buildings and is completely underground. It is by itself a remarkable Grade 2 building. The station is located on the Piccadilly Line between Green Park and Leicester Square, and the Bakerloo Line between Charing Cross and Oxford Circus. Metronet, one of the three private operators of the London Underground under an agreement through a partnership, is investing about 14 million pounds to restore the Picadilly Circus station. Most of the planned improvements include a new plant and wall finishes, a new CCTV system, new points of assistance, a new public address system, new electronic information panels, improved seating locations, waterproofing measures, improvements to assist to the visually impaired and improvements in lighting. Electric escalators will be replaced. Virtual Reality (VR) Virtual reality images for virtual reality glasses viewing in mobile devices There are no limits to see the world: live the experience by yourself in virtual reality ! Join us ! Little Planet Photo Gallery How was this Virtual Tour made