Once upon a Tyne, did you get it (?!), sorry, time. 1776 to be precise, a fine Georgian building entirely in it’s own grounds was built in the heart of Newcastle.
For centuries she was known for her beauty and was home to the most decedent entertaining in the city, prestigious balls, dinners and dances. Then the most awful thing happened. Enchanted rooms lay forgotten, crystal chandeliers gathered inches of dust, then silence. A silence that lasted ten years.
Once a proud building full of life, she started to shrink away. Slowly she lost her sparkle, the exterior became blackened, water seeped into rooms and windows smashed in their frames. Demolition was ordered during the seventies the unsightly wreck was sat on prime Newcastle developing ground. She had to go.
Then at the eleventh hour a Greek family by the name of Michaelides stepped in and saved her from extinction. Slowly they started to breath life back into her and she started to twinkle again. She began to charm the people of the city again and still remains one of the most popular, historical venues Newcastle. Owned by the same family, only now ran by the next generation.
A little about Mr Homer Michaelides, the man who saved the show and insisted it must go on.
Usually found in warmer Greek climates, but, because it’s Christmas he has returned to visit family, friends and his lovely Assembly Rooms. Everyday he can be found warmly welcoming guests to Christmas parties, functions and conferences. Hospitality could be his middle name. Mingling through crowds at balls and parties, topping up glasses and handing around gravy boats, he keeps the magic alive at Christmas. Maybe you’ll be lucky enough to meet Mr Homer if you’re visiting this year, and if you do make sure to thank him. Thank him for saving and giving one of the most historical and beautiful buildings back to Newcastle.