The city hall or town hall is usually the most important building in a city because it houses the local government offices.
These buildings have been constructed in a wide variety of architectural styles which makes it very interesting to see how they blend into the city’s architectural landscape.
Some feature distinctive bell towers while others are topped with incredible domes. Yes, they are more often than not the highlight of the city.
In this article, we have compiled a list of some of the most beautiful city hall buildings from all around the world.
1. Los Angeles City Hall
Los Angeles City Hall is the most prominent building in the Civic Center of downtown Los Angeles. It’s one of the most famous buildings in LA and has served as the city’s mayor’s office and city hall since it was completed in 1928.
The building was constructed in the Art Deco architectural style and features an observation platform that is free for visitors. It stands 138 meters (453 feet) and was completely renovated at a whopping cost of $135 million in 1998. This ensures that this remarkable landmark stays safe during earthquakes.
2. Antwerp City Hall
Antwerp City Hall is the most amazing building in Antwerp, the second-most popular city in Belgium. It dominates the western part of the Grote Markt, the most important square in the city. It has an extended history because it was completed between 1561 and 1565.
It’s one of the most famous Renaissance buildings in the northern part of Europe and reflects the status of Antwerp as a major port city in the 16th century. This was the time that the city became the most important city in Flanders following the decline of the port of Bruges.
3. San Francisco City Hall
San Francisco City Hall is one of the most beautiful city halls on this list that features a stunning dome. It’s the epitome of Beaux-Arts architecture in the United States and was constructed between 1913 and 1916. This was shortly after the 1906 Earthquake flattened large parts of the city.
The antenna on top of the dome reaches a height of 93.73 meters (307.5 feet) which makes it significantly taller than the Capitol Building in Washington D.C. Designed by Arthur Brown Jr. (1874-1957), it’s one of the most stunning landmarks in San Francisco.
4. Leuven Town Hall
Leuven Town Hall is an incredible Gothic building in the city of Leuven just east of Brussels. It’s one of the most famous buildings in Belgium and is situated in the heart of the city called the Grote Markt. It’s a prime example of Late Brabantine Gothic architecture.
Like most Gothic buildings, the amount of ornamentation is really a sight to behold. The façade of the town hall features niches that are decorated with 236 sculptures of saints and people related to the city’s history. Although the town hall was completed between 1448 and 1469, these sculptures were only added in the 19th century.
5. Hôtel de Ville (Paris)
The Hôtel de Ville is the city hall of Paris and faces the square that was named after it, the Place de l’Hôtel-de-Ville in the 4th arrondissement. It’s one of the most fantastic buildings in Paris and to be referred to as such is definitely an achievement in itself.
The original city hall was built in its location in 1357. The south wing of the building was completed in the 16th century followed by the north wing in the 17th century. These were burned down during the Paris Commune in 1871 and rebuilt in the Renaissance Revival style between 1874 and 1882.
6. Stockholm City Hall
Stockholm City Hall is the amazing city hall of the Swedish capital and stands majestically on the eastern end of Kungsholmen island. The location of the building in Sweden alone is worthy of being featured in this list of beautiful city halls as it looks pretty amazing from the water nearby.
The building was constructed in the early 20th century at the height of the National Romantic architectural era. This Scandinavian style is described as a spinoff of the Art Nouveau style that emerged in various other parts of the world. It features 8 million red bricks and the Nobel Prize Banquet is held in the Golden Room inside the building.
7. Vienna City Hall
Vienna City Hall or the “Winer Rathaus” is the city hall of the Austrian capital and faces the Rathausplatz in the heart of the city. This building in Vienna is one of the most stunning examples of Gothic Revival architecture and was constructed between 1872 and 1883.
The design of the structure is dominated by 5 towers of which the tallest one in the center reaches a height of 98 meters (322 feet). This tower features a sculpture on top known as the Rathausmann, a statue that has since become one of the symbols of Vienna.
8. Minneapolis City Hall
Minneapolis City Hall is officially known as “Minneapolis City Hall and Hennepin County Courthouse” and that’s because it’s used by both the city and the county. It was constructed between 1888 and 1909 and is a prime example of Romanesque Revival architecture.
More specifically, this building in Minneapolis incorporated the Richardsonian Romanesque style which was popular in North America in the late 19th century. What’s remarkable is that it originally featured a red terracotta roof which has been replaced by a green copper roof because it started leaking.
9. Manchester Town Hall
Manchester Town Hall is the magnificent Victorian-era Gothic Revival city hall of Manchester, England. It was constructed between 1868 and 1877 and remains the sixth-tallest building in Manchester with a height of 85 meters (270 feet).
The most prominent feature inside the building is the Great Hall, a room that is decorated with frescoes depicting scenes from the history of the city. The entrance hall features a large number of sculptures depicting people that have been important in Manchester’s history.
10. Brussels Town Hall
Brussels Town Hall is without a doubt the most amazing building in Brussels, the capital city of Belgium. It was constructed between 1401 and 1455 in the distinctive Brabanntine Gothic architectural style and it’s quite a miracle that it still stands today.
It’s by far the tallest building in Brussels’ Grand Place and the only one that survived the bombardment of Brussels by King Louis XIV of France in 1695. It stands 96 meters (315 feet) tall and is topped by a gilded sculpture of Saint Michael, the patron saint of the city.