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Sir Elly Kadoorie's Residence

The building of the Children's Palace used to be the former residence of Elly Kadoorie, a British Jew sho started his business with 500 Hong Kong dollars and then became a rich businessman famous both in Hong Kong and Shanghai. In 1919 his former house was burnt down by a fire and his wife died of the disaster but she helped her nursery maid escaped from the fire. Elly Kadoorie was in extreme grief and went back to London together with his children. He put Braun, his best friend, in charge of the building of a new house for him. Braun drank all the time and lived a dissolute life so he entrusted it to a contractor. In this way the contractor sedulously built the house a luxury one which was lasted four years. So Elly Kadoorie was surprised to get the bill of one million liang of silver for the building the house. But since the house was really splendid so he loved it dearly.

The house, occupying an area of 14,000 meters and with a building area of 3,300 square meters, was magnificently built with symmetry columns and long corridors showing an unequalled architectural skill. It was surrounded by large area of green grass looking like a royal palace. And another floor was added in 1929.

The house was built in reinforced concrete structure. Its first floor served as a ball room and dining room and there were many bed rooms Upstairs with each room having its own style and color and six bath rooms. At the same time the wall both inside and outside and the flat ground around the house were covered by Italian marbles and a marble colonnade could be seen at the entrance. At the top of the hall a cove was laid by marble and the floor of the four sides of the hall were also covered with marbles and the middle with teak, ideal for cances and even the stairs, rails and balusters were also made by marble. So people called the house a "marble house."

Since Elly Kadoorie was generous and fond of making friends so his big house was always full of guests. That is why it has become a Children's Palace today. His name will be remembered by the joyful children from generation to generation.


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