Now a museum, ʻIolani Palace, was the palace home of King Kalākaua and Queen Liliʻuokalani until 1893. The structure that we see is the second on the grounds and was completed in 1892. The original called Hanailoia was built in July 1844. When the monarchy was overthrown in 1893 it became the capitol building until 1969.
The Palace was Built on the Site of an Ancient Heiau
Orginally on this site was an ancient heiau called Kaʻahaimauli. The grounds later housed the missonnary compound of Hiram Bingham, home of missonnary William Ellis, and the first stone house for Prime Minister Kalanimoku. After his death the "palace" became a meeting hall. The grounds contained other residences of royals.
A royal tomb, influenced by Wesminster Abbey, was constructed for the bodies of King Kamehameha II and queen Kamāmalu in 1825. Over time other graves were added to the compound.
'Iolani Barracks Housed The Royal Guard
A building called I'olani Barracks was completed in 1871 to house the royal guards. The other houses were removed and replaced by grass.
ʻIolani Palace features a unique architecture style known as American Florentine.
Kalākaua, while visiting Europe, saw the grand palaces owned by other monarchs. He commissioned the construction a new I'olani Palace, directly across the street to become the official palace of the Hawaiian monarchy.
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