Queen Victoria Building, QVB, was on my list of places to visit each time we went had a trip to Sydney. It is a while since I last wandered through its tiled walkways or visited any of the eclectic array of shops which call QVB home.
Australia is still a relatively young country but it takes pride in preserving yesteryear’s architecture for future generations to enjoy. QVB is one such building in the centre of Sydney. The City Circle trains have a stop called QVB and one disembarks and enters the building in the basement. How very cool is that.
The main structure as it is now was completed in 1898 on the original site of the Sydney markets and built as a monument for Queen Victoria, the reigning monarch. Queen Victoria also has a statue outside the building as well as a wishing well with a bronze statue of her beloved dog Islay, who died aged five from the wounds inflicted by a cat. In the same area stand raised garden that provide a colourful splash in what is a fairly intense part of the city.
In the early days of our time in Australia a friend and I would visit in December when the shops were decked in their Christmas finery. Each year a Christmas tree is placed beneath the QVB’s copper dome and becomes the focal point for shoppers and sight seers. One year the tree was decorated with Swarovski crystals, I would love to have seen that.
There is a shop for everyone even the MOTH. Take the escalator to Victoria’s Basement and one enters a chef’s wonderland but more than that due to its popularity the stock is turned over quickly meaning every time we visit it is all new and exciting. Happiness is … an exquisitely maintained Romanesque building that is home to shops that offer something for every budget.
At one point I was a calligrapher and my first stopping point was an exclusive calligrapher’s emporium packed with papers, inks and nibs and pens. No fountain pens in the store. You chose your nibs and then a holder to suit your hand. My favourite purchase was a glass-nibbed pen with a spun glass shank. I have used it several times but mostly I take it out and just look at it. One visit later and the little shop was gone.
Posted as part of the 2015 A – Z Blogging Challenge.