Art Deco elegance, Eltham Palace, London

In Cities, Days Out, English Heritage, London, Near, Our Journeys, Trip-Types by Janis0 Comments

Who knew it was there

Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

Lying along the end of a lane in South East London, you wouldn’t immediately expect to find a palace.

However, here in Eltham, that is exactly what we discovered.

The exterior of the Great Hall, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

Armed with our English Heritage membership, we venture into the grounds of the opulent moated palace.

How to get there

You can catch a train from London Bridge Station to Mottingham Station, this takes around 16 minutes. Then it is only a ½ mile (10 minutes) walk to the Palace.

Free parking is available on site.

Childhood playground

Henry VIII spent much of his childhood here but was the last monarch to invest any substantial sums of money into the palace.

The Walled Garden, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

From the 17th century, the original buildings were left to decline and years of neglect took their toll. The Great Hall was saved, but little remains of the original historical palace.

Decadence

It wasn’t until 1933 when millionaires, Stephen and Virginia Courtauld, took a 99-year lease from the Crown and had an elegant new house built.

Constructed in the ‘Wrenaissance’ style, it was partly inspired by Hampton Court & where possible incorporated remains from the original palace.

The Grand Entrance, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

With money no object, the Courtaulds helped design the luxurious Art Deco interior and had the cutting-edge technology of the time, installed throughout the house.

Period Entertainment, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

Moving on

After only living there for 11 years and unfortunately experiencing the last years through WWII bombings, the Courtaulds moved out.

English Heritage took over the management in its entirety in 1995.

The amazing restoration of the interior transports you back to the decadence days of the 1920’s & 30’s.

The entrance to the gardens, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

First impressions

When you first step into the domed entrance hall you’ll be amazed, every aspect so synonymous with the era. You feel like you have entered onto a scene from a Hercule Poirot movie.

The entrance area, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

Encircled with intricate wood panelling and elegant period furniture, it truly conveys a sense of luxury.

Cocktails, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

Elegant suites

Before discovering the ‘entertaining’ rooms, your journey through the 1930’s continues up to the stylish bedrooms.

Virginia's Bedroom, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

The Courtauld’s suites would have been the height of modernity at the time, elegant lines and luxurious comforts, including en-suite bathrooms & walk in wardrobes.

Virginia's bathroom, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

Although the Courtaulds would have had separate suites the chic styling of Virginia’s room, continued through to Stephen’s.

Stephens Bedroom, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

Entertaining

Back down to the ground floor is where the Courtaulds would have been able to display their true style.

The Drawing Room, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

The Drawing Room has more of a traditional feel to it, with elements of the room feeling quite historical.

Dining

Just in case you thought the Deco lines were over with, the Dining Room has them in abundance.

The Dinning Room, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

The Italian designed room has some beautiful contrasting elements, particularly with the aluminum-leaf ceiling & the striking black and silver doors.

The Dinning Room door, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

Boudoir

Then onto the boudoir, no house would be complete without one.

The sofa in the boudoir, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

Not only is this chic room filled with such style, but it also has a large leather map surrounding the fireplace, depicting Eltham Palace and its neighbouring area.

The Parisian map was made by sewing small pieces of leather together.

The fireplace and map in the boudoir, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

Map Room – Lay undiscovered

Recently uncovered to the public is the Map Room, under years of wall paper large maps were found pasted to the walls. Each of the maps has a scene, and characters from around the world painted next to them.

As the Courtaulds were keen travellers, these would have been used to plan their adventures around the globe.

The Map Room, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

Library

Stephen had his own library and evidence of his expeditions and mountaineering days were planned within here.

The Library, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

Great Hall

One of the few remaining elements of the 15th-century palace is the Great Hall, built by Edward IV and dates from the 1470’s.

The Great Hall from the gallery, Eltham Palace, London, England,

Many elaborate banquets would have been held below its magnificent oak roof.

It was dismantled and reassembled in 1911–14, and the hall itself was fully restored in the 1930’s.

The Courtaulds also had the minstrels’ gallery added, which could be accessed from the 1st floor.

The Great Hall, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

WWII

Unfortunately, the Courtaulds were at Eltham Palace during the Second World War and regularly had to retreat to the converted basement during air raids.

Billiards in the bunker, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

But as with the rest of the palace comfort was high on their priority.

19 acres

Surrounding this lovely palace are 19 acres of gardens, around part of which the moat is still very evident & today full of fish.

The moat around Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

The medieval north bridge, moat walls and buttresses still remain.

Extensive work and planting were carried out by the Courtaulds to make the gardens into the pleasure they are today.

The formal gardens, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

Why not?

Take a picnic and sit and admire the views across London’s skyline.

Would you like a little more?

We have created a little YouTube video of Eltham Palace.

Why not subscribe to the channel and get the latest clips as we post them?

Inspired?

To visit Eltham Palace? Does the style & elegance of the period tempt you?

Why not check out the latest deals on Booking.Com for London? Remember Eltham Palace is in the South East of the capital.

Booking.com
Pinterest, Eltham Palace, London, England, UK

Have You

Visited Eltham Palace? Or any other of English Heritages 400+ sites? What’s your favourite?

About the Author

Janis

Janis, the co-founder of Our World for You, was born in London and raised in Kent and the Isle of Wight. Along with Gary her partner, they have been travelling part time since 1995. In 2016, they decided that enough was enough with the 9 to 5, so armed with the knowledge and experience that they had gained on their adventures, that they wanted to inspire others to travel the world near and far.

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Art Deco elegance, Eltham Palace, London was last modified: July 24th, 2017 by Janis