If you’ve ever been to Harry Potter World in Hogsmeade, then you know that it’s home to some of the most iconic film locations in the history of cinema. From Harry’s Room to the Knight Bus, each house contains treasures that Potter fans the world over have come to cherish.
Now, it’s the turn of the real houses to shine, as a group of architects have reimagined what life would have been like at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Weaving together the best of both worlds, they’ve brought the magic of cinema to life in their designs for real-life Hogsmeade.
Hogsmeade, the fictional village that serves as the setting for the Harry Potter series, is actually a real place in the UK. Located in the Cotswolds region, it’s got a population of around 2,600 people and is known for its cobbled stone streets, Tudor-style buildings, and enchanting market.
The UK has a long history of witchcraft and wizardry, which can be traced back to King Henry VIII’s reign in the 16th century. It was during this time that he established the Church of England, breaking away from the Roman Catholic Church in the process. You may have heard of one of Henry’s famous wives, Queen Elizabeth I, who was himself a keen student of the occult, studying witchcraft and demonology at Oxford University. She’s the reason behind many of Britain’s legendary magical traditions, including those associated with Harry Potter.
In the Harry Potter universe, Hogwarts is a renowned boarding school for wizards and witches that was founded in 1883. The magical school is steeped in tradition, boasting a library that is said to be the largest in Europe and a quidditch pitch that is bigger than any other in existence. The school year is divided into two terms, with students having an increasingly active social life between them. It is believed that there are 17 distinct house styles located at the school, all of which have a magical element to them. The houses are named after famous wizards and witches, with students in the same house often working together to maintain a high degree of friendship.
As well as the houses, Potter fans will also be able to enjoy an outdoor butterbeer bar, Diagon Alley, and the infamous Hogwarts Express, which ferries students to and from the school each day. And of course, all of this will be set inside the magical moat known as the Hogwarts Lake. It’s an exhilarating and exhilarating place to be.
How Did They Do It?
If you’ve ever been to the UK, you’ll already know that it can be tricky to find a truly representative image of the Potter series. Although the settings and décor are accurate, the films were actually shot in Spain and Portugal, using a large amount of green screen to help the director James Watkins blend the locations with the cameras’ own artifice. So the reason behind these architectural recreations is that the designers wanted to see what life would have been like at Hogwarts during the peak of the series’ popularity.
There are 24 official houses located in Hogsmeade, with three additional structures built for the Potter films, the Hog’s Head pub, the Magical Menagerie, and the Knight Bus. The houses are named after Hogwarts’ headmasters, with two exceptions; the Slytherin house is named after Percy Wyndale-Springfield, the man who founded the school, and the Dumbledore house is named after Albus Dumbledore, the school’s most famous headmaster. Each of the 24 houses is furnished and decorated in a faithful recreation of the films, with each room dedicated to a different Harry Potter character or theme. From Hagrid’s Hut to the Room of Requirement, you can see what life would have been like at Hogwarts during Harry Potter’s time.
The Merits of Bronze and Brass
With an emphasis on detail, the designers of these recreations have sought to create an authentic atmosphere by using materials that evoke Harry Potter’s surroundings. The largest of the 24 structures is the Hogwarts Castle, which is made up of alternating bands of metal, stone, and brick. Other prominent buildings in the village include the Hog’s Head pub, the Three Broomsticks restaurant, and the Magical Menagerie.
The UK is rich in medieval architecture, and it is a unique artistic triumph that this golden era of design is being brought to life through Harry Potter.
Bringing the Magic to Life
For those looking for a taste of what it would have been like to attend Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, these magical recreations of real houses bring the magic of cinema to life in a way that feels as real as can be.
It’s fascinating to think about how much this little film franchise has evolved over the years. From humble beginnings as a novel written in 1971 to one of the largest entertainment franchises of all time, this unlikely story has inspired generations of Harry Potter fans around the world and will continue to do so for years to come.