Starting 15th of December 2023, there’s an exciting update for couples getting married in Gibraltar. The new venue for Registry Office wedding ceremonies is the Mario Finlayson National Art Gallery, located within the City Hall.
Before exchanging vows in this beautiful setting, couples must still visit the Civil Status and Registration Office at Joshua Hassan House to finalise paperwork with original documents and proof of stay for verification.
The History of Gibraltar City Hall:
Constructed in 1819 by Aaron Cardozo, a prosperous merchant of Jewish Portuguese descent, this mansion initially served as his private residence. Despite property ownership restrictions for non-Protestants, Cardozo gained permission to build this impressive three-story house in John Mackintosh Square. It replaced the former hospital, chapel of La Santa Misericordia, and a prison.
After Cardozo’s death in 1834, the mansion became the Club House Hotel under John Ansaldo’s lease. In 1874, Pablo Antonio Larios, a wealthy Gibraltarian-born businessman, purchased the property and oversaw its renovation. Eventually, it passed to the Gibraltar colonial authorities in 1922, initially as a post office but later becoming the Gibraltar City Council’s headquarters.
The building played a significant role in Gibraltar’s telecommunications, housing an automatic telephone exchange in 1926. Over time, it underwent expansions, including a new floor and a northern extension, altering its original design. Today, this historic structure houses the Mayor’s Parlour and the Mario Finlayson National Art Gallery.
In June 2015, the Mario Finlayson National Art Gallery opened, realizing a long-held dream of Gibraltar’s art community. Local artist Mario Finlayson BEM, a leading advocate for a National Art Gallery since 1954, championed this cause.
As you plan your Registry Office Wedding in Gibraltar, remember that you’re not just celebrating love in a stunning venue; you’re also becoming a part of Gibraltar’s rich history and artistic heritage. It’s a unique and meaningful start to your journey as a married couple.