Come on in! The First Family throw open the doors of the White House for a virtual tour
It is par for the course for the President and the First Lady to welcome world leaders, state dignitaries and even A-list celebrities into The White House but now the Obamas are throwing open the doors of their home to everyone else too.
The First Family have collaborated with Google Art Project to allow people to take a 360-degree tour of 1600 Pennysylvania Avenue from the comfort of their own living rooms.
The initiative - where people can take a virtual tour of the building’s public rooms and zoom in on 139 works of art - was launched today as part of the Obamas' efforts to make the White House ‘The People’s House.’
Opulent: In the 'Cross Hall' on the State Floor is a 1982 portrait of Jimmy Carter by Herbert Elmer Abrams, Google Art Project lets you zoom in to the portraits
In the 'Blue Room' a bust of Christopher Columbus is positioned under 'Boys Crabbing' - an 1855 painting by William Ranney
'Green Room': This smart sitting room boasts dozens of artworks, which Google Art Project allows you to click on for more details
Michelle Obama filmed a welcome video for the online tour in which she emphasizes the White House’s role as 'the people’s house.'
'The White House isn't simply a home to First Families or meeting space for world leaders, it's also known as 'The People's House,' a place that should be open to everyone. And that's why we've made it a priority to invite young people, military families, and Americans of all ages to join us here at the White House,' she says in the video.
'Thousands of people have walked these halls and gazed at the artwork,' she continues. 'They've examined the portraits of Washington, Lincoln and Kennedy. They've imagined the history that's unfolded here. And now you can do all of that without leaving your home. So go ahead, look around, enjoy the history and the beauty of these rooms. Because after all, this is your house, too.'
The project focuses on 139 artworks by 98 artists which are found within the White House, including portraits of former presidents and First Ladies.
State Floor Room: This opulent room on the first floor has been used to entertain countless dignitaries and world leaders over the years
Stunning: The new 360-degree tour lets people explore 13 public rooms including this formal dining room
Library: The ground floor library shows various paintings of Native American Indians, including three paintings by Charles Bird King
The tour allows people to explore thirteen of the White House’s public rooms over the two floors, including an extravagant dining room, an extensive library and impressive halls lined with famous artworks.
Portraits of former presidents, and some of the previous First Lady's, are around every corner as well as an extensive collection of Lennox and Haviland china and even a steel and mother-of-pearl sabre which hangs in one room. Each piece comes with an explanation on the Google Art Project site.
While you can peer into the 'Blue Room', the 'Green Room' and the 'China Room' there are certain areas you cannot explore such as the Oval office and the more personal parts of the property including any bedrooms.
The new collection comes as part of an expansion of Google Art Project, which launched last February, and includes 360-degree tours of 46 museums around the world including the National Gallery and London’s Tate Museum.
Former Presidents: In the East Garden Room hang portraits of (from left to right) Chester Alan Arthur, Millard Fillmore, Calvin Collidge and Grover Cleveland
Woman in Red: Former First Lady, Grace Goodhue Coolidge takes prime position in the 'China Room'
A 1994 portrait of George H.W.Bush, America's 41st president, hangs above a grand piano in the 'Entrance Hall'