Minister of Community Development Culture and the Arts Dr. Nyan Gasby Dolly and Port-of-Spain Mayor Joel Martinez lisen to I’m All A-Tremble Over You by Dorothy Lamour on the gramophone during the official tour of the refurbished Mille Fleurs Building during its handover to the City of Port-of-Spain yesterday.

Rishard Khan

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A historic piece of the Magnificent Seven has been returned to its original glory, Mille Fleurs, 116 years after it was initially constructed. And while standing a testament to history, it would also hope to guide the way forward as it would now house the National Trust, non-governmental organisations, and host cultural events.

The building which underwent restoration works in 2016 was completed at a cost of $10 million, Minister of Ministry of Community Development Culture and the Arts Nyan Gadsby-Dolly said. It would now house the National Trust in an annexe which is converted from the stables during the restoration.

“They are going to rent out to NGOs for office space. There are quite a number of NGOs that come to the ministry…and they don’t have office space and that’s always a problem in terms of them progressing,” Gadsby-Dolly said.

“The space within the building itself, that’s going to be rented out for cultural events, weddings, that kind of thing of course with particular guidelines.”

The house was built by Mrs Prada as a gift for her husband Dr Enrique Prada, was the home of the Prada family for 19 years. The name Mille Fleurs is original and was bestowed upon the structure by Mrs Prada herself. The house was built in 1904 by George Brown of the Trinidad Trading Company, under the guidance of Dr Prada, who had a particular interest in the building.