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Balcony House

History from 1880-present


Mr. Stephen Dillet died in 1880 at Balcony House. He bequeathed the property to his wife, Charlotte, and his daughter, Charlotte Augusta.


In 1899, Stephen Dillet’s widow Charlotte died, leaving their daughter, Charlotte Augusta, as the sole owner of the property.


Charlotte Augusta Dillet died in 1913. The house was willed to Mr. Alexander Martin Cunningham, friend and nephew-in-law, of Mrs. Charlotte Dillet.


Mr. Cunningham died in 1943, and the property sold as was his wish with the proceeds repatriated to his sister in London.


On 31st January 1944, the property was conveyed to the Victory Hall Corporation. In the same year it was mortgaged for the sum of £1,000 to Bahamas Investments Ltd.


Soon after the mortgage settlement in 1947, the property was leased to the Hon. William Maxwell Aitken, Baron of Beaverbrook & Cherkley. The property was later sold to Mrs. Marie Josephine Bryce, a wealthy American woman and major shareholder in the chain of A & P foodstores in the U.S.A.

Mrs. Bryce hired Grace Richards Inc., a New York interior design firm, to redesign the interior of the House. By the mid 1970s, Mrs. Bryce had stopped visiting The Bahamas, leaving the House in care of her maid, Mrs. Rosalie Armbrister.


In 1985, the Central Bank of The Bahamas acquired Balcony House and its property.


The Ministry of Public Works began restoration of the property, with the costs fully underwritten by the Central Bank of The Bahamas.


The Central Bank of the Bahamas partnered with the Department of National Archives, opened Balcony House as a The Balcony House Museum in 1994.

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