The Osaka Prefectural offices were considered leading edge architecture when their construction began in 1926. The five-story central area has a special room called the “Seicho no Ma,” where New Year ceremonies and other activities were conducted. At present, the building has become too small for such activities and has been used as an executive office; but more recently it underwent restoration to its original condition and from January 25 of this year, was opened to the public and free to enter. The building boasts many elegant touches to appeal to visitors, including Japan’s largest stained glass ceiling, beautifully ornamented interior, and chandeliers restored using original materials and parquet (wooden mosaic) flooring, along with an east window offering a panoramic view of Osaka castle. Also on exhibit in a room off to the side is a collection of priceless toys, designated tangible cultural properties by Osaka Prefecture.
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