Government House is the official residence of the Governor General of the Bahamas.
Built on a hill known as Mount Fitzwilliam and completed in 1806, this imposing stuccoed-coral-rock building on Duke Street is the Bahamian archipelago’s foremost example of Georgian Colonial architecture. In 1814, Colonel Don Antonio de Alcedo, a Spanish scholar and soldier, wrote admiringly of its effect. The Oriental Herald, in 1825, stated: “The new Government-House, standing on the centre of the ridge that overlooks the town, was built by a sum voted by the House of Assembly from the funds of the Treasury and cost upwards of 20,000l. It is built in the European style of architecture, and is universally considered the best building of the kind throughout the West Indies”.
The building’s original neoclassical aspect, as well as its stone construction, was directly influenced by the arrival of Loyalists from the southern United States in the 1780s. Previously most Bahamian buildings had been built of painted wood. Typically Bahamian elements, however, include louvred wood shutters and brightly painted exterior, in this case a brilliant shade of conch-pink. The primary façade, centred on a pedimented entrance supported by four stout Ionic columns, dates from the 1930s, when the building was remodelled following the hurricane of 1929.