Dublin City Photos

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The Lafayette Building, D'olier Street

If walls could talk the walls of this building located in the very central heart of Dubln could write volumes. Looking down O' Connell Street since the original building was constructed in the 1890s for the Liverpool and Lancashire Insurance Company. The Lafayette Building dates from the 1890s and got its name from the Lafayette family of photographers who had their main studio in the building. After photographing Princess Alexandra during a royal visit to Ireland, James Lafayette was invited to photograph her mother-in-law, Queen Victoria, at Windsor Castle. The Dublin branch was sold off in 1961 and continues to trade. Most Dubliners' see this building when in the city but very rarely look at it. Made of Portland stone, the same stone used in construction of The Customs House the version we see before us today was designed by JJ O' Connell who also designed The Dolphin Hotel, the magnificent red brick building just off Parliament Street. The dolphins are still visible on the ediface. The building was taken over by 'John Purcell' who imported tobacco. Below is a shot of the building in its' former glory.

in 2001, the building was used as a Manchester United store, but the less said about that the better. Recently one of the apartments within the building sold for €3.5 million in 2013. One of the most under rated and visually pleasing buildings in the city, the next time you are passing it, don't just see it....look at it!!!

This picture is believed to have been taken around 1900. As of February 2017 I can't trace any information on the statue sitting outside. Anyone with any information on it I would ask you to email me at info@dublincityphotos.com

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Mike O' Brien