A Sneak Peak Inside Charles And Camilla’s Private Luxury Home
| LAST UPDATE 05/03/2023
King Charles III and his Queen consort Camilla lived in Clarence House during Queen Elizabeth II's reign. In fact, they love it so much that, according to inside sources, they are in no rush to move to Buckingham Palace. Here's a sneak peak inside the prestigious home, originating from the 19th century.
Clarence House is a royal residence located on a stretch of road called the Mall in the City of Westminster, London. It was originally built in 1825 and has been the home of the (then) Prince Charles of Wales and Camilla.
Before Prince Charles and Camilla became residents of Clarence House, the Queen's mother lived there until she passed away at 101 in 2022. Still, the house is on the route towards a very famous landmark, none other known than the primary home to the late Queen Elizabeth II, Buckingham Palace.
Architect of Clarence House
The image below displays Clarence House's Morning Room. The photo was taken in 1894 and portrayed how detailed the interior is. The home would always be beautifully decorated, especially while awaiting future royal heiresses, like the Queen's mother.
Of course, the Royal family have only the best home interior and exterior. The lavish designs were done by famous British architect John Nash, responsible for most architecture during the Georgian and Regency eras. While the picture is delightful, the Morning Room has historical and vital reasons behind it.
The Home of Legacy
There are many reasons why the Morning Room deserves insightful recognition. Firstly, it was the Queen Mother's favorite room in the house - a place for her to sit comfortably in the early morning while waiting to start Royal duties. But there's a lot more depth to the room than just its quiet and spacious atmosphere.
The second reason to acknowledge is that the room's interior defined the home's continuity and legacies that have previously sat there. The room had not been re-touched or redesigned for any reason. While there might have been a few mechanic touch-ups, the décor is filled with Royal history.
A Personal Royal Touch
Regarding the room's history, late members of the Royal family added their personal touch to add a more homely sense. When the late Queen Elizabeth's mother passed, her grandson respectfully placed pieces of individual artwork around the room. Still, the furniture remained in its exact place.
That wasn't all for Clarence House. While there is great history and in-depth reasons behind the luxury home, other aspects must be acknowledged first. Specifically, other architects who were the former designers involved in the home's refurbishments.
At the age of 76, British interior decorator Robert Kime woefully passed away. Until his passing, he and King Charles III worked a lot together as it was the then-Prince's favorite designer. While they built a relationship of décor, this didn't mean they they didn't conduct a friendship on the side.
While working on the interior of Clarence House and Highgrove House in Gloucestershire, the then-Prince greatly valued Mr. Kime's opinion. With that in mind, Mr. Kime would make occasional visits to Charles at Highgrove, according to Tatler magazine. Robert Kime would often "find three things wrong, and he'd always be right."
Inside Clarence House
Clarence House was typically open to the public, especially in the summer. The beautiful gardens, various rooms, and unique features would stand out as a fantastic tourist attraction. Still, there is more depth than meets the eye regarding the interiors of Royal residences.
While they experienced plenty of non-Royal sourced opinions regarding the designs of Clarence House, it was King Charles III who, of course, had to approve. As well as being a Royal landmark, it is also a family home they had to make uniquely theirs.
The Grand Entrance
If there's one aspect that any other lavish homeowner can relate to, it's that Clarence House opens its doors to an incredible grand entrance. This is known as the Entrance Hall. As their shoes walk along the Persian wool carpets, it is a trail through an historical aesthetic.
Besides the cultured floors, the carpet incorporates a Herati pattern, emerging from Afghanistan and quite prevalent in Iran. Extended portraits further surround the Grand Hall; starting from the left wall, and working its way up to the ceiling, is a painting of Augusta, the Princess of Wales, in the 18th Century.
Paintings of Honor
Continuing in the house's entrance is a prestigious painting of Henry V introducing himself to the Queen of France, which is beautifully set further along the wall. The picture was painted around 1782, the Gregorian period, and displays different features.
The painting was by William Kent, an English landscape architect, painter, and furniture designer in the early 18th century. While Kent was enduring himself in the painting, it is thought Queen Caroline approved it to be a memorable household item. Still, another display of the King of Hanover at a dinner service is in a glass cabinet.
Garter Banner of the Queen Mother
Next to the glass cabinet lies a fairly large banister that resembles a carpet's material. However, this carpet-like feature displays the Garter Banner of the Queen Mother, showing the harp, three lions passant, three bows, and three lions rampant, all hanging from a metal pole with a flame finial.
The three golden lions represent England, the red lion constitutes Scotland, and the golden harp is for Ireland. Combined with the Royal family is the coat of arms of the Earl of Strathmore, the Queen Mother's father. Just in the hallway alone, the rest of the tour denotes memorable moments in British history.
The Waiting Room
This is not the typical waiting room with chairs lined up against the wall. Still, if Her Majesty or any member of the Royal family were to meet someone, for a studying or therapeutic painting session, this was the perfect room to do so.
The serenity-filled room exerts a calming force. Watercolor paintings separate the walls, merely displaying Windsor Castle as remembered in the 1940s. These windswept-like paintings were by John Piper, who was also famously known for being a printmaker and a designer of stained-glass windows.
After walking through the Grand Hall and Waiting Room, we return to the beloved Morning Room. While this room is the Queen Mother's most preferred room of the house, it has been used for multi-purposes over the years. This includes family photo shoots.
King Charles III and his wife, Queen consort Camilla, favor this specific room for visitors. It is a warm, welcoming room perfect for all occasions, including newborn christenings. When Prince Louis was born and christened, the family chose the Morning Room especially to capture the eventful day.
The late Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Philip, enjoyed using the Morning Room for other purposes, including studying. While he enjoyed a more lavish full-English-styled breakfast, this was originally the sole reason for the room, hence its name.
The room includes a respected wood-and-gilt bronzed desk, which is also famously sustainable. King Charles III is proud and known for using sustainable products. That said, he uses this space proudly in the Morning Room while carrying out Royal duties.
After long academic hours, the Royal family members choose other therapeutic activities to wind down. A room that contains any book they want is The Library. This room is particularly unique as it was put together by the late Queen Elizabeth II and her husband.
The Library is famously known for the late monarch and her husband personally taking the bookshelves from the Entrance Hall and relocating them into the reading room. Still, they kept the tomes in their original places, which transposed the environment of the old space.
In 1947, the late Queen Elizabeth II wedded her husband, Philip. Following their marriage, the late monarch gave birth to their first son Charles. One year later, they moved into Clarence House, making it their staple home between 1949 and 1953 and the first home for Charles who made several childhood memories there.
While the family might have documented their early years spent at Clarence House, very little information of the Royals' lives was shared with the public. In fact, the closest depiction is from Netflix's The Crown, which shows the realistic and unsettling journey of Britain's future King through private education.
The Dining Room
Like any other family dining room, this is a space where the Royal family gathered for meals and other occasions. With only the finest silverware and crystal-infused glasses, this meal is cherished. One noteworthy occasion that took place here was the Diamond Wedding anniversary of the late Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip.
Now, seeing that there is a new King, different special activities will take place in the dining room. The new King Charles III supposedly loves to arrange large gatherings with light gourmet food and beverages. Regarding décor, a bronze coving was added when he moved into the house.
Portraits From the War
Fireplaces are placed anywhere, usually in a lounge or dining room. Typically, they are explicitly placed to complement the surrounding décor. While visitors are bound to gather around the warm setting from time to time after meals, it only seems right to put a portrait of the Queen Mother by Augustus John above to admire.
It was reported that the painting was left unfinished. However, it is highly unnoticeable due to the talent of Augustus John. The artwork was put to a halt due to the eruption of World War II. John was then too skeptical about finalizing his work. But, to his dismay, the Queen Mother was satisfied.
The Horse Corridor
Unfortunately, there is not much history behind this corridor or its name. The Horse Corridor was given this name simply because the hall is plastered with horse paintings. Although, it is heartwarming to learn the underlying reason for this feature of the home is because of how much the late Queen Elizabeth II loved horses.
The late Queen incorporated her interests into sporadic activities. She would attend many horse-related events, particularly the Grand National, where she had her first horse-riding lesson at three years old. In 1952, she even inherited her father's racing horses, and her favorite event has been the Royal Ascot ever since.
The Garden Room
Although the Morning Room has been established as the preferred favorite room of the Queen Mother, another room is tied at first place. The Garden Room is also a major highlight of the house as it is shaped similarly to the Garden Room.
The shape of Clarence House is designed to capture panoramic views of the property's gardens. The room is split into two but also has a unique feature: it imitates a music room. There is no better way to end the evening after a meal with a look into the gardens while warming up by the fireplace, and even singing themselves to sleep.
A House Warming
These notable rooms are not just for admiring and gathering family members. The new King and former Prince, Charles, previously invited many elite guests into his home, specifically the Garden Room. One of these guests included former New Zealand premier Helen Clark.
Oddly enough, we cannot imagine how the two spent time in the Garden Room. Apart from introducing her into his home and showing her around, it is a picture to imagine Prince Charles playing a tuneful piece on the grand piano. Still, we only are aware of the downstairs rooms.
Throughout the time the former Prince of Wales has been a resident of Clarence House, Charles has authorized every piece of artwork. Out of all the rooms in the house, the King Charles III has been able to personalize his private space. So we can get a sense of how this might look.
Still, these art pieces were uniquely and explicitly painted for the Royal family. Of course, this concludes why King Charles has not released any of the artwork. While the majority of their family information is shared with the world, it is only fair that he keeps this to himself.
Other than taking part in Royal duties, the residents of Clarence House enjoy wandering around the gardens and getting some fresh air. It is not secret that the King Charles, has always been fond of nature. With that in mind, the green spaces surrounding his home mean more to Charles than ever.
In 2002, Charles's grandmother unfortunately passed. While she favored spending time in the gardens, Charles refurbished them out of respect. Between 2004 and 2005, Charles decided to place a Doric-style portico - a Greek and Roman-styled roof held up by columns - at the house's entrance to greet visitors.
The Duke of Clarence
Originally, Clarence house was built between 1825 and 1827 for its first resident Prince William, Duke of Clarence, and the son of George III. Unfortunately, he passed at 71 years old in 1837. So, he only lived in the newly renovated house for 10 years.
The next in line for the throne soon took over residency at Clarence House. Prince Augusta moved in quite casually and lived there for the remaining three years of her life. Her previous home was a part of Clarence House, but this was quickly destroyed, forcing her to leave.
A Home During the War
They continued to pass down Clarence House to the next legacy of residents, such as the mother to Queen Victoria, the Duchess of Kent, who moved in by 1841. Not long after, she was accompanied by the monarch's children, Alfred, the Duke of Edinburgh, and Arthur, Duke of Connaught.
When World War II was about to commence, Clarence House became their safe haven. Just before late Queen Elizabeth II and her husband Philip became homeowners in the 1940s, they used it for war effort, to help the nation. Once the war ended, the Queen Mother lived there from 1953 until 2002.
As mentioned, Clarence House is open to visitors, especially during summer. This is the most pleasant time to allow guests in, as they admire the naturally brightened rooms as well as the flourishing gardens. But, they offer alternatives if it isn't possible to visit physically.
To this day, the house offers virtual tours that can be enjoyed at any time and place. With just a click of a button, virtual visitors can enter the Royal home, exploring the entire property grounds. The Royal family even choose to share special moments, like lighting the Christmas tree in order to engage with the British nation.
In the near future, it is not unknown whether there will be new residents at Clarence House. While the entire family has trademarked special places in the house, we can only wonder who the next generation of the Royal family will find their way to the Grand Hall.
Regarding the entire décor - interior and exterior - details may be subject to change. Still, that doesn't mean the house's history will fade away. The home to the new King Charles III for many years will likely stay in place as much as possible. Yet, it is questionable what the rest of the house and other Royal homes look like.
The 70 Year Reign
On September 8th, 2022, the world was struck with historical and sad news. Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, passed away at 96 years old. The late monarch reigned over the British nation for 70 years, the second longest reigning monarch in world history and the longest British-reigning monarch.
Queen Elizabeth II husband, Prince Philip, also passed away just a year earlier, on April 9th, 2021. They gracefully left behind their children, Anne, Princess Royal, Prince Andrew, Duke of York, Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex, and Charles III, who has been crowned the new King of the United Kingdom.
King Charles and Camilla’s Future Home
As the crown was passed down to the new King Charles III, he and his wife Camilla are about to relocate. While the monarch traditionally habituates in Buckingham Palace, this has not been officially confirmed. However, it will be amongst other residences of Royal homes nearby.
King Charles III and Camilla have lived in Clarence House since they wedded in 2005, where he initially served his title as Prince of Wales. Now that there has been a significant shift in the family, this ultimately affects everyone's residing situation.
There is no confirmation where the now King Charles III will live, but it is reported that His Majesty is relatively comfortable at Clarence House for the time being. He will most certainly have accommodation at the traditional monarch's home, Buckingham Palace, but there are other options.
With official Royal residences in Windsor, Scotland, and Northern Ireland, the Royal family has time to decide what future habitual situations will entail. As for the new Prince and Princess of Wales, William and Catherine, they have only just moved into Adelaide Cottage in Windsor, putting their move into Highgrove House on pause.
The Homes to Queen Elizabeth II
While the late Queen Elizabeth II spent the majority of her years serving duties from Buckingham Palace in Central London, she previously lived elsewhere. As the owner of various properties scattered around the United Kingdom, she had many to choose from and some favorites.
At the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, The Queen's primary residence was Windsor Castle, a 950-year-old property in Berkshire town. She lived there with Prince Philip until he passed. Following her loss, she remained in her Windsor home where she remained close to her family members and because it was where she secured fond memories with her late husband.
Inside Buckingham Palace
It is confirmed that Buckingham Palace is undergoing refurbishments and will not be completed until 2027. This might have explained why the Queen did not want to relocate from her beloved Windsor home. However, the lavish 39-acre residence - built in 1703 - contains 19 staterooms, 240 bedrooms, 92 offices, and 78 bathrooms.
The palace also contains an art gallery, drawing rooms, and beautifully grown gardens. Since the Queen's passing, the palace is temporarily closed and unavailable for assisted tours, but Royal sources believe Charles may "have other designs for Buckingham Palace and throw it further open to members of the public."