Crystal Symphony recently called on Belfast. One of the key attractions in the capital of Northern Ireland is the Belfast City Hall, situated in the city center.
Free guided tours are offered daily, except Sundays. Monday through Friday the 45-minute to one-hour tours are offered at 11 a.m., 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. On Saturdays, tours are offered at 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. If you plan to join a tour, show up in the City Hall reception area 15 minutes in advance.
Plans for the City Hall began in 1888 when Queen Victoria awarded Belfast city status. The original proclamation can be seen in the reception area. City status was in recognition of Belfast’s expansion and thriving industries, including ship-building (Titanic was constructed here) and linen.
Construction of the city hall began in 1898 under the supervision of architect Sir Alfred Brumwell Thomas and was completed in 1906. Durban, South Africa’s City Hall is almost an exact replica of Belfast’s City Hall.
Belfast City Hall was officially reopened on October 12, 2009, following a two-year refurbishment. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton performed a ribbon cutting ceremony and unveilled a plaque to mark the reopening.