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Old Government House Museum

Waterfront Dr., Road Town
+1 284-494-3701
Website
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Review Highlights
Beautiful & p[eaceful

Visited the Museum as part of a tour of Tortola and were shown around by an ex-pat gentleman who... read more

Reviewed 11 April 2017
apollo12
,
Macclesfield, Cheshire
Great private tour by local English lady.

We visited on a cruise ship and did our own walking tour. Found this beautiful old house where... read more

Reviewed 4 April 2017
Toni W
,
Delta, Canada
Read all 16 reviews
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Old Government House has an important place in the history and culture of the people of the British Virgin Islands. It has always been a place of purposeful activity, hosting official functions, social gatherings and Royal visits; all of which engaged local participants.The annual garden party to celebrate the birthday of the reigning monarch entertained hundreds of citizens and residents yearly within the house and grounds and the event itself has become an institution on the calendar of social events in the British Virgin Islands. For some forty years, the party was held on the tennis court, where at other times young and old tennis enthusiasts practiced the art of the game.The house and gardens have also hosted a number of royal visitors including Elizabeth the Queen Mother and Princess Alice in 1964, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II visited on two occasions, once in 1966 and again in 1977, Princess Margaret in 1972, Princess Alexandra in 1988, Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh in 1994, and Prince Andrew in 2000.Unfortunately, the materials employed during the original construction of the building in 1926 accelerated the deterioration endemic to buildings in a sub-tropical climate, hastening the mortality of the site as an official residence. The building fell into disrepair and was closed for renovations in 1996, when the Governor and his wife moved to a temporary residence on the west side of Road Harbor.A period of reflection followed during which time members of the Overseas Estates Department at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London pondered over the fate of Old Government House. The decision was taken to demolish the building and construct a new residence located on the old site. However, local objections demonstrated the importance of the building within the local cultural psyche and after consultation with Virgin Islanders towards the end of the millennium in late 1999, it was considered appropriate to rehabilitate Old Government House and transform it into a museum. Once significant structural repairs and a complete internal transformation (primarily conducted by volunteers) had taken place, Old Government House Museum was opened to the public late 2002 and today provides a focus of interest for people interested in Virgin Islands history and culture.
  • Excellent37%
  • Very good57%
  • Average0%
  • Poor0%
  • Terrible6%
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Closed Now
All hours
Hours Today: 09:00 - 15:00
LOCATION
Waterfront Dr., Road Town
CONTACT
Website
+1 284-494-3701
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Reviews (16)
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1 - 10 of 15 reviews

Reviewed 11 April 2017

Visited the Museum as part of a tour of Tortola and were shown around by an ex-pat gentleman who told us about the history of the house and its distinguished visitors in the past, including Princess Margaret. The rooms are beautifully decorated and the wall...More

Thank apollo12
Reviewed 4 April 2017

We visited on a cruise ship and did our own walking tour. Found this beautiful old house where Queen Elizabeth had visited in 1966 and 1977, staying on the Royal Yacht Britannia in the bay, but meeting her people in this building which was then...More

Thank Toni W
Reviewed 28 March 2017 via mobile

This house is a beautiful piece of British history and well worth a stop at between visiting the beach. Even though Princess Margaret was the only royal to stay here there are tons of pictures of the queen also. There is also a room here...More

1  Thank fizzy1991
Reviewed 27 March 2017

We visited the museum as part of a tour from our cruise ship, the guide was most informative and gave us an insight into the history of the house and this lovely island.

Thank grotbags
Reviewed 15 January 2017

First of all it is very charming. Second the governor no longer lives there. Third the tour lady is very nice. Last there are photos of all the royal vists.

Thank london057
Reviewed 28 December 2016 via mobile

The Old Government Museum was very educational, usually Ermin Penn is there, local historian, who is absolutely amazing and her knowledge of the history of the British Virgin Island is Extensive. The house is filled with pictures and artifacts that have been preserved through the...More

Thank Cindy L
Reviewed 28 December 2016

We arrived in Road Town on the cruise ship MS Balmoral on a very wet morning. With no excursion booked we waited for the rain to cease and then wandered ashore with the ship's rudimentary map. This indicated that there was a museum to the...More

Thank andrewlgc
Reviewed 20 October 2016

We tried visiting the Old Government House twice during opening hours. The first time the gate was unlocked, however the access into the house was closed. We managed to peek in the windows and visit the souvenir shop. We tried again another day. Although the...More

Thank murmietier
Reviewed 20 January 2016

Although one could tour the Old Government House Museum in under an hour, we spent a relaxing two hours there. Besides touring the furnished rooms, examining paintings on the walls and artifacts from royal visits, and looking through the Stamp Room collection, we read a...More

Thank Ms_Possibilities
Reviewed 13 May 2015

The Old Government House Museum is a very pleasant surprise. Located just a short walk from shore in Road Town, this museum has a stunning collection of British memorabilia all located in the Old Government House. The first floor has many great artifacts and collectibles...More

Thank Brian D
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