Many times I have walked past the Three Graces at the Pier Head, the Royal Liver Building, the Cunard Building and the Port of Liverpool Building, in Liverpool by the Mersey River. On a recent visit to Liverpool I followed an uncle’s advice and I went inside the Port of Liverpool Building for a closer look. Though visitors can only walk around the ground floor, unless they have business at one of the offices in the building, it is still worth going inside to see the granite staircase, stained glass windows, detail around the elevators, and the impressive dome in the middle. If you ask the commissionaire at the desk, he will provide you with a one page (two-sided) sheet about the history of the building. It contains interesting facts such as: although the building opened in 1907 as the Mersey Docks and Harbour Board, it now houses private offices and went through extensive refurbishment between 2006 and 2009 at a cost of £10 million, approximately 28 times what it originally cost to build.
From what I could see on the ground floor, the design around the elevators is different on each level. On the ground floor there are brass globes surrounded by seahorses above the doors. The lobby is in the centre of the building with the dome towering overhead. According to the leaflet, the saying that you can see around the central balcony is from Psalm 107 vs 23 and 24. There are many nautical touches, of course, including in the stained glass windows, and the blue and white theme reflecting the sky and the white caps on the ocean waves. The white calacatta marble walls are 8 feet 6 inches high and add grandeur to the building. We approached the building from the east and noticed at one point a difference in the wall construction. We later discovered this was a result of a bomb in WWII.
Next time you are down by the river, instead of walking by, go in. If you have a few million to spare, I hear it is for sale!