Government House Foundation
Government House, a Provincial & National Historic Site, opened in 1913 as the official residence of Alberta’s Lieutenant Governors. It played this role until1938; during that time it was a centre of social and political life in Alberta.
During the Second World War the house was leased to Northwest Airlines as office space and accommodation for personnel of the Northwest Staging Route, a major wartime defence initiative. Near the end of the war, the building was converted to a convalescent hospital for wounded veterans and later a veterans’ home.
In 1964 the Province of Alberta reacquired the building and its grounds as a site for the Provincial Museum and Archives, now the Royal Alberta Museum. The house found new use as a government conference and meeting centre, and venue for state entertaining, and as such underwent a major renovation and refurbishment, reopening in 1976.
Today Government House hosts a wide variety of government, vice regal and state functions, as well as public events, including Doors Open Festival, Alberta Culture Days activities and seasonal High Teas. The popular New Year’s Day Levee offers the public a chance to meet Alberta’s Lieutenant Governor in a social setting.
Government House contains a number of original artifacts and furnishings from its time as a vice regal residence, and an extensive art collection showcasing Alberta lives and landscapes by many notable Canadian artists.
Government House is celebrating its centenary in 2013. Two special exhibits illustrate, through photographs and artifacts, the significance and many historical roles of the house over the past century.
Free public tours of Government House are available on Saturdays, Sundays and holiday Mondays beginning February 16. Please note: due to official Government House events, tours will NOT be offered on the following dates:
- Saturday, May 25 – no tours available
- Sunday, May 26 – no tours available
- Saturday, June 1 – no tours available
- Saturday, June 8 – no tours available
Opening hours are from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Spring Tea Info
Because Government House is limited to state and government functions, it is not available for private functions such as weddings.
Wedding photos may be taken on the south side of Government House and in the gardens. There is no process or requirement for booking the grounds; as such, groups taking photos are expected to use the grounds on a first-come, first-served basis.
Upon entry to Government House, this is one of the first rooms you encounter.