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Government House, Wellington

Government House
Government House, from the front lawn, in 2011.
General information
Architectural style Edwardian
Town or city Wellington
Country New Zealand
Construction started 1908
Completed 1910
Technical details
Floor area 4,200 square metres (45,000 sq ft)
Design and construction
Architect Claude Paton in the office of John Campbell, Government Architect

Government House in Newtown, Wellington, New Zealand is the principal residence of the Governor-General of New Zealand.


  • General information 1
  • History 2
    • Refurbishment and centenary 2.1
  • See also 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5

General information

Located at 1 Rugby Street at the southern end of the Basin Reserve, it counts amongst its neighbours a hospital (Wellington Hospital) and a high school (Wellington College). There are eight guest suites, a self-contained apartment for the Governor-General and his/her spouse and family, as well as a ballroom, conservatory, sitting rooms, service rooms and kitchens and a wing of offices, all of which are tended to by about 30 staff. The grounds, which have been endorsed as a "garden of National Significance" covers some 12ha and includes a police guardhouse at the main gate. Other outdoor facilities include a tennis court, and pavilion, swimming pool, bomb-shelter, squash court, and four external cottages. There is also a Visitor Centre, which was opened by HRH The Prince of Wales and HRH The Duchess of Cornwall to mark the Diamond Jubilee of HM Queen Elizabeth, the Queen of New Zealand, in November 2011.[1] Tours of Government House Wellington are available to members of the public and community and school groups.[2]

The main Rugby Street entrance has a guard house and a large flag-pole, from which the Flag of New Zealand flies. When the Governor-General is in the residence his flag flies from the flagpole on the top of Government House.[3]

The upkeep of the house is the responsibility of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. As such, supply and maintenance for the Governor-General's office falls within Prime Minister's department.


Government House was designed by Claude Paton in the office of John Campbell, Government Architect. Built between 1908 and 1910, the house's grounds total 12 ha, and the house is 4200 m2.

Refurbishment and centenary

The House closed in October 2008 for a major $44 million conservation and rebuilding project and was reopened in March 2011.[4] During the refurbishment the Governor General lived at Vogel House in Lower Hutt while in Wellington.[5]

In 2010, the House celebrated its 100th anniversary.[6]

Landscape showing the setting of Government House (Edwardian building right middle). The National War Memorial (New Zealand) (Carillon lower left), New Zealand Dominion Museum building (copper-roofed building lower middle and lower right), and Baring Head Lighthouse (on ridge upper left in far distance).

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ McLean, Gavin (October 2006), The Governors, New Zealand Governors and Governors-General, Otago University Press, p. 281 
  4. ^ Michelle Duff (28 March 2011). "Government Houses $44m facelift". Retrieved 18 April 2011. 
  5. ^ "Conservation Project Rationale".  
  6. ^ "Government House Centenary". Government House. 2 October 2010. 

External links

  • New Zealand Government House - House and Grounds
  • DPMC - Government House
  • The Governor-General of New Zealand - Biography

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