Government Houses of the British Empire and Commonwealth

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Government House is the name given to some of the residences of Governors-General, Governors and Lieutenant-Governors in the Commonwealth and the British Empire. It serves as the venue for the Governor's official business, as well as the many receptions and functions hosted by the occupant. Sometimes, "Government House" is used as a metonym for the Governor or his office.

Government House is the term used to describe the official residence of a Viceroy or governor; as many Commonwealth nations now operate without the British monarch as Head of State, to avoid confusion, several term their presidential palaces State House or President's House.

When Queen Elizabeth II or a member of the Royal Family visits a Commonwealth nation, they will often stay at Government House, which is reflected in the Court Circular. This privilege is sometimes extended to other dignitaries but usually arrangements are made for important visitors to be accommodated at hotels, or accommodation provided by their own country's embassy or consulate.


South Africa[edit]




Citadelle of Quebec

Caribbean and the West Indies[edit]

Government House of The Bahamas

South America[edit]


Government House of Singapore

British Indian Empire[edit]

Rashtrapati Bhavan, New Delhi
Raj Bhavan, the Government House of Kolkata (formerly Calcutta).
Rashtrapati Niwas, Shimla, former "Viceregal Lodge", built 1888

Middle East[edit]

  • Iraq, Government House of Iraq
  • Israel, Government House, Jerusalem
  • Kuwait, Government House of Kuwait



Pre-independence, the living arrangements of the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland varied according to the social calendar:

After 1922, the Viceregal Lodge served as the official residence of the first two Governor-Generals of the Irish Free State. The Governor of Northern Ireland resided in Hillsborough Castle, which is, since 1973, the official residence of the Northern Ireland Secretary.



Government House, Canberra

New Zealand[edit]

South Pacific[edit]

See also[edit]