Spanish Tourist Office Wins Silver-Gilt for First Hampton Court Flower Show Garden

Spanish Tourist Office Wins Silver-Gilt for First Hampton Court Flower Show Garden
4th July 2016 James Brooke

Spanish Tourist Office Wins Silver-Gilt for First Hampton Court Flower Show Garden


The Spanish Tourist Office and Turismo de Galicia were awarded silver-gilt for their ‘Route of the Camellia’ garden in the World Garden Category at The Royal Hampton Court Palace Flower Show.

The Spanish Tourist Office and Turismo de Galicia are delighted to announce they were awarded silver-gilt after exhibiting at the RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show for the first time ever. The ‘Route of the Camellia’ Garden competed in the largest ever ‘World Gardens’ award category this year.

Designed by Rose McMonigall, the garden celebrates the beauty of the Galician Camellia territory and the iconic and ancient pilgrimage route, the Camino de Santiago. A path of scallop shells, sourced from Galician waters, will lead visitors through this mystical garden on a journey symbolic of that taken by pilgrims travelling to Santiago de Compostela, whist a carpet of camellia petals will represent the ancient Camellia trees which populate many of the gardens of the region’s Pazos (Palaces).

“The Spain garden aims to encapsulate the journey of the pilgrimage, drawing the viewer’s imagination into the garden and emphasising the wild and beautiful surroundings of this special corner of Spain” said garden designer, Rose McMonigall.

The plants, mosses and wild flowers found in Spain’s ‘Route of the Camellia’ garden can be found in Galicia. The garden will feature an authentic seven foot specimen camellia tree, a 12 foot, pink-barked Birch, hydrangeas, weathered cobbles, a granite Virgin Mary shrine and the symbol of St James the Great, the scallop shell.

The Camino de Santiago, dating back as far as the 9th century, is today enjoyed by many ‘pilgrims’ from across the globe, not only for religious purposes, but also as a way of experiencing a spiritual adventure, an opportunity to bond with friends or loved ones, a unique travel experience or a physical challenge. Modern day pilgrims have travelled the route by bike, on horseback and even on a skateboard.

Galicia is a renowned flower destination, also known as ‘the land of camellias’. These traditionally south Asian flowers have become such an integral part of the region that visitors to Galicia can follow a dedicated ‘Camellia Route’; a journey that passes from northern to southern Galicia through 12 manor houses and gardens where the camellia reigns in all its glory.

Enrique Ruiz de Lera, Director of the Spanish Tourist Office UK, says: “The Camino de Santiago is one of Spain’s most famous routes, whilst the lush and rugged landscapes, charming villages, spectacular beaches, delicious seafood centric cuisine, and the wine routes of Galicia are largely underrated by the UK holidaymaker. Rose’s design has successfully captured the nostalgia and romanticism of this very green and historical part of Spain, using not only all-important plant-based references but also incorporating architectural and even climactic features to represent the region. We hope visitors to the show will be enticed to visit thanks to her triumphant interpretation of the region’s appeal and her encapsulation of Galicia in a garden.”

“We are thrilled to be able to showcase the appeal of taking part in the Camino de Santiago and enjoying the region’s lush and floral landscapes at the world’s largest flower show. We feel confident that this garden will effectively highlight the rich history of Galicia and also encourage all types of travellers to visit and enjoy all that is on offer in this part of Spain” said Maria Otero, Promotions Executive at Turismo de Galicia.


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