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Buckingham Palace is the Queen's official London residence and is used to entertain guests on state, ceremonial and official occasions.
Buckingham Palace was built in 1702 by the Duke of Buckingham as his London home. The house was then later sold to George III in 1761 by the Duke's son.
In 1774 it was renamed "Queen's House" as Queen Charlotte resided there.
The Palace has of course seen many renovations and alterations, the first of which was in 1820 when Nash was commissioned by George IV.
Nash, one of the foremost architects of the day added a new suite of rooms facing west into the garden, this doubled the size of the building.
However the 'front' of the Palace, has remained virtually unchanged from the original design over 300 years ago.
Queen Victoria was the first monarch to take up residence in Buckingham Palace in 1837. Once again extensive changes took place.
Today Buckingham Palace is used not only as the home of The Queen and her husband, The Duke of Edinburgh, but also for the administrative work for the monarchy.
Buckingham Palace is the official London residence of the Sovereign. You can always tell if the Queen is in residence, look at the flagpole on top of the Palace, if the flag is flying then 'the Queen is at home'!
Her Majesty receives and entertains guests invited to the Palace in the State Rooms..
The State Rooms, opened to the Public for the first time in 1993, can be visited during the summer months.