Leinster House (also known as the Houses of the Oireachtas) This is the home of the Irish parliament. Our tour included a visit to the Dáil and Seanad Chambers. Members of the Dail Eireann are known as the Teachtai Dala (TDs) and they are directly elected by the people at a general election. The Seanad serves as a second chamber where legislative proposals approved by the Dail are reviewed and any suggested amendments passed back to the Dail. Admission is free, but tours (Monday to Friday at 10.30 am and 2.30 pm) have to be arranged in advance. (I have read that it is possible to get in on a walk-up tour, if you are lucky. )
Government Buildings Our tour included a visit to the office and meeting rooms of the Taoiseach (Prime Minister of Ireland). In 1989 the building was extensively renovated and refurbished to provide modern accommodation for the department of the Taoiseach, the Office of the Attorney General and the Department of Finance. The Government Buildings was originally intended as a home for the Royal College of Science, then housed at 51 St. Stephen's Green. It was the last significant building project undertaken by the British administration in Ireland. The project began in 1904 and was completed in 1922, in time to be occupied by the new Irish Free State Government. Cabinet meetings have been held in the North block of the complex ever since.
City Hall Our tour took us into the rooms of the Dublin City Council meetings. The commission for Dublin’s City Hall was awarded through an architectural competition that attracted great public interest. The design included a grand entrance rotunda covered by a wide coffered dome. It was Ireland’s first Neo- Classical building and also the first public building in Dublin to be clad in Portland stone. The building was adapted for Dublin Corporation in 1852 by Samuel Roberts and the original layout was restored in 2000 by Paul Arnold Architects. All Victorian divisions on the main floor were removed to open up the space.

Ireland’s Parliament and Dublin’s Council

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