The Royal Exhibition Building in Carlton Gardens Melbourne completed in 1880 is one of the world’s oldest exhibition buildings and was part of the exhibition movement of the 19th century. The architecture of this wood, steel and brick building was inspired by a mix of Byzantine, Romanesque, Lombardi and Italian Renaissance styles. Although many of its parts were demolished or damaged over the years the building still retains some original features that made expositions of the time awe inspiring such as the main hall spread over 12,000 sq meters, its prominent dome, the impressive entrance and the garden. The many defining events it hosted included the Melbourne International Exhibition in 1880, the Melbourne Centennial Exhibition later that decade, Australia’s first parliament in 1901 and as a venue for basketball, weightlifting, wrestling and fencing of the 1956 summer Olympics. It was also where the Victorian State Parliament was located for 26 years. Another important event that occurred here was the selection of the design for the Australian flag and later flying one from the top of its dome. Unlike many other exhibition buildings of the time that were iron and glass structures, the Royal Exhibition Building was conceived as a permanent structure.
Carlton Garden which was envisaged as a suitable setting for an imposing building has remained a showcase for the 19th century Gardenesque style and comprise of parterre garden beds, avenues, a carriage drive, a grand avenue, a path system, clusters of trees, two lakes and ornamental fountains that were the hallmarks of the style. The ornamental palace garden provided the most suitable setting for the building that was conceived as a palace of industry.
In addition to important events the building served as a venue for many trade shows, as an exam hall, a fever hospital in the early 20th century, troop accommodation and it even hosted weekly dances. This World Heritage listed building underwent makeovers in the 1980s and 90s that saw many of its original architectural features restored. Its German Garden was restored in 2009. Although today it is no longer the largest exhibition venue in Melbourne, it still serves as an exam hall and continues to host conventions, trade shows and exhibitions.
Stay at the Citadenes on Bourke Melbourne to enjoy one of the best located Melbourne serviced apartment with easy access not only to important business areas but to transport links and the many happening places around the city. As one of well known Melbourne serviced accommodation guests have a choice of studio, one and two bedroom deluxe and executive fully furnished and equipped contemporary accommodation as well as leisure and other amenities that make this the ideal base for business and leisure visitors.
Umanga Kahandawaarachchi is a passionate travel writer who writes under the pen name, Maggie Tulliver. Her field of writing covers a wide array of content and articles related to travel and hospitality industry.