Palais de Lomé Opens in Togo West Africa

Once the headquarters of former colonial powers, the Palais de Lomé and its spacious park will open in April 2019 to the public for the first time in their 121-year history, as a spectacular exhibition, design, visual and performing arts venue without parallel in West Africa.

Right at the heart of the city, facing the Atlantic Ocean, the Palais de Lomé and its park will boast an exhibition space, a bookshop, a boutique and two restaurants in addition to facilities for musical, dance and theatrical performances.

Part of an initiative by the Togolese Head of State, this once derelict space reclaims and reimagines the heritage of the Togolese people.

The Palais will feature a permanent gallery space devoted to the story of the city of Lomé and its future. There will be an ambitious programme of changing exhibitions of international importance. The opening exhibition "Togo of the Kings", an immersive and interactive deep dive into the history of Togo, will explore the country's role in the region.

The ground floor of the Palais will showcase the very best of contemporary Togolese and West African design, the first space devoted to exhibiting design in West Africa. The opening exhibition is dedicated to the ground-breaking Togolese designer Kossi Aguessy, whose work features in the permanent collections of The Museum of Modern Art in New York (MoMA) and the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris.

New commissions and installations of contemporary design and sculptures will be displayed in the grounds of the Palais. The outdoor area will provide a spectacular backdrop to an inspirational season of performance, theatre, dance and music

The park offers a peaceful oasis in the centre of Lomé, displaying the biodiversity of the different landscapes in Togo. Covering over 25 acres and stretching down to the Atlantic coast, it provides a vital habitat for flora and fauna to flourish under tropical trees which are centuries old.

History of Palais de Lomé

The Palais de Lomé was formerly known as the Palace of the Governors and was built over seven years between 1898 and 1905. It housed the German, then French, colonial powers. After Independence, till 1970, the Palais became the headquarters of the Togolese government. For the last two decades it has been been empty and closed to the general public.

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December 6, 2016

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