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Unlike The Queen’s official residencies such as Buckingham Palace or Windsor Castle, Sandringham House, which is located in Norfolk, is a private residence and is typically home to the royals at Christmas time. Ahead of the Royal Family gathering for festive celebrations, what does the inside of Sandringham look like inside?
Set amongst 20,000 acres of carefully maintained land, Sandringham was bought by Queen Victoria in 1862.
For many years, the property hosts the Royal Family’s annual Christmas celebrations, the Christmas morning church service at the local chapel and is where The Queen films her annual televised Christmas Message.
As for what it looks like inside and out, the £48.5million property has had various additions and renovations.
Original parts of the house date back to Elizabethan times – late 16th century.
It was also one fo the first houses in England to feature gaslights, flushing toilets and working showers in the 1870s, and today retains its Edwardian interiors.
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The Dining Room
Very little of Sandringham’s decor has changed over the years, but the dining room has had the biggest stylistic evolution.
The original decor saw wall-to-wall murals surrounded by dark panelling, to being painted in a light shade of cream.
More recently, the walls have been painted a pale shade of Braemar green with “magnificent Spanish tapestries adorning the walls”.
In the middle of the dining room sits a small table which seats six.
Sandringham’s official Instagram account, @sandringham1870 explains how the table is in fact Queen Victoria’s and can be expanded to seat a larger group of people.
The post read: “Queen Victoria’s mahogany table sits pride of place in the dining room at Sandringham.
“Expanding to seat 22 it was brought back by her son King Edward VII from her residence on the Isle of Wight – Osborne House.
“The King and family would typically eat around 12-14 dishes at Christmas time around this table.”
The Drawing Room
As for the room where the Queen would house visitors and entertain, the Drawing Room is decadently decorated.
It has a pattered carpet in shades of red, pink and purple, while the walks are a soft cream.
Ambient lighting scatters the room in the form of small wall pictures and larger lampshades on tables.
There are several plush armchairs in view, while a small round table with four chairs is positioned in one corner of the room.
The walls and ceiling are highly decorated by Italian craftsmen who were brought to carve the intricate panelling on the walls, cornices and painted the ceiling.
“The golden pheasant in the Drawing Room keeps a beady eye from his striking trompe l’oeil ceiling panel perch. Queen Victoria in her journal in 1871 described this room as a ‘very long and handsome drawing room,’” the Instagram account revealed.
To one corner of the Drawing Room there is an ornate gilded screen.
Split into four gold panels, each one has a glass screen at the top and holds 24 black and white photographs per panel on the one side.
The images are of some of the earliest guests to the House, including actors, musicians, composers, and statesmen.
“Queen Alexandra was one of the first members of the Royal Family to be interested in photography and asked visitors to bring a photo of themselves,” the social media account reads.
The Small Drawing Room
“Overlooking the sweeping west lawns, the Small Drawing Room is musical and floral in style and houses many fine porcelain decorations, including the chandelier which is thought to be Dresden porcelain,” Sandringham Instagram reveals.
“Her Majesty the Queen recorded the 1992 Christmas message in this room, due to the terrible fire that destroyed much of Windsor Castle that year.”
There is a pink and white marble fireplace surround with a large curved mirror above.
The wallpaper is flowery in a diagonal pattern and short white wood panelling surrounds the room.
In the middle of the room is a small circular table with a white tablecloth covering it, and a small armchair is seen in a corner.
The Music Room
Sandringham revealed a smaller room off the Drawing Room on their Instagram account.
A piano was seen with a stool and an open music book place on top of it.
Fresh flowers were also on top of the piano, while one side of the room was glass windows which looked outside to manicured gardens and trees.
Sandringham’s saloon is an impressive part of the property.
Around the Saloon there is wooden panelling, as well as a wooden balcony, curves and columns.
Coats of arms are also hung above the balcony.
There is a large fireplace at the back of the room, and to the right, a portrait of The Queen, while to the left, there looks to be a large family portrait.
A piano is also positioned in one corner and is adorned with several black and white photographs, presumably of previous Royal Family members.
In another image taken from the balcony, the other end of the Saloon or “the heart of the house” can be seen.
More coats of arms are hung towards the top of the wall, while a giant tapestry is below which sits above another fireplace.
There are many plants scattered around the room, with large palms and smaller bushes.
In front of the fireplace is a long cushioned bend and a small armchair which looks out to the double doors leading to the gardens.
Another image shows a hallway which has a large painting of Queen Alexandra hung on one wall.
The portrait shows her holding a small black and white dog and is in an extremely thick gold frame with 3D leaves.
The carpet is a burnt orange and white pattern, there is white wood panelling around the walls, and a beige wallpaper sits above.
Through the hallway there are arches, green curtains, several cushioned ends and mahogany bookcases with bronze sculptures above.
St Mary Magdalene Church
The small Church at Sandringham has held memorials to members and relations of the Royal Family from Queen Victoria onwards.
It is used regularly as a place of worship by the Royal Family and Sandringham Estate staff.
The Instagram account says: “Considered to be one of the finest carrstone buildings it dates back in its present form to the 16th-century.
“The decorated chancel with its carved angels frames the silver altar and reredos which were presented to Queen Alexandra by Rodman Wanamaker (an American department store pioneer) as a tribute to King Edward VII.
“In addition Queen Alexandra also received a silver pulpit and a silver 17th-century Spanish processional cross from Wanamaker.”
The estate also houses York Cottage and Amner Hall which is the country home of Kate, the Duchess of Sussex and Prince William.
York Cottage was the country home of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry.
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