The 1 Logical Reason Justin Trudeau Doesn't Live in the Prime Minister's Estate
The yoga-loving, baby-twizzling, pride-marching, tattoo-sporting Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has blown a breath of fresh air through the dark clouds of recent politics, and we can't get enough of what he does and how he does it. So where does he lay his head every night, and what do we know about his home? Well, for a while after he came to office, there was some uncertainty about where he, wife Sophie Grégoire, and their three children, Xavier, Ella-Grace, and Hadrien, would live. Two years on, their supposedly temporary digs have turned into the long-term family home. Let's break it down . . .
Rideau Cottage — Home Sweet Home
The Canadian prime minister usually resides at the address 24 Sussex, but soon after the 2015 election, it became clear that the property needed extensive, safety-related refurbishments to the tune of $10 million. So Trudeau and his family took up residence in the 22-room, two-level Rideau Cottage. It was usually home for the secretary to the governor general, but the Trudeaus have now been there for the past two years.
Rideau Hall — Trick or Treat
The property is located on the sprawling 88-acre grounds of Rideau Hall — home to the governor general — and was built in 1867. It follows a classic Georgian design, with symmetrical sash windows, paired chimneys, and a pedimented porch. And the couple have made themselves quickly at home here, posing scary in front of the property at Halloween.
When the Trudeaus last opened their doors to the cameras before he became prime minister, it showed that the couple favor a light, uncluttered space, deep comfy sofas, luxurious fabrics, and a fridge covered in family photos and magnets. We're guessing this home features more of the same.
So Rideau Cottage is not to be confused with Rideau Hall — the lavish, 175-room property that is both home to the governor general and location for all official and ceremonial functions including incoming royalty. It was built in 1838 and has been vastly expanded over the years. It even has space for a skating rink in the Winter and cricket pitch in the Summer.
24 Sussex — Childhood Memories
As the son of former Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, Trudeau's home for much of his childhood was the traditional PM's residence. The limestone property was built in 1868 and is set in four acres on the south bank of the Ottawa River. It has 35 rooms spread over four floors, interconnected by an elevator, and a sweeping oval-shaped spiral staircase. The public rooms were elegant and classic rather than grand, with sculpted ceilings, modest chandeliers, and exquisitely upholstered furniture suites. Trudeau's father had a swimming pool installed, and Trudeau (on the left in this picture) and his brothers would utilize the tumbling mats in the basement.
24 Sussex — No Frills
The pictures taken while Trudeau was living there as a young boy show how unfussy the family's living quarters were, looking more like a young artsy family's starter home with its no-frills decor, flower-power scatter cushions, and potted plants.
24 Sussex — What Next?
In a picture taken of Pierre Trudeau and US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, it's possible to see the simplistic decor of the property, showing exposed limestone walls, simple furniture, and bold wall hangings. When assessments were made to price up potential refurbishments, it was reported that among many other concerns, the 50-year-old electrical system was at capacity and the kitchen and laundry room were deemed "not functional." Justin Trudeau's mother, Margaret, has said that 24 Sussex was "a residence, never our home" and called it "drafty." With the $10 million price tag attached to required renovations, it seems that Trudeau and his family will be at Rideau Cottage for the foreseeable future.