Front street in Hamilton.
|Council:||City of Hamilton|
|Website:||The Corporation of Hamilton|
Hamilton is located on the north side of Hamilton Harbour, and is Bermuda's main port. Although there is a parish of the same name, the city of Hamilton is in the parish of Pembroke. The City is named after Sir Henry Hamilton, governor from 1778 to 1794; the parish of Hamilton pre-dating it.
Notwithstanding that it is Bermuda's governmental and commercial capital, Hamilton has a permanent population of only about 970, though some estimates have it as high as 1,500. Hamilton is the only incorporated city in Bermuda, but actually is smaller than the historic town of St George's. A more representative measure of Bermuda population tends to be by parish.
As the offshore domicile of many foreign companies, Bermuda has a highly developed international business economy; it is a financial exporter of financial services, primarily insurance, reinsurance, investment funds and special purpose vehicles. Finance and international business now constitute the largest sector of Bermuda's economy, and virtually all of this business takes place in Hamilton.
Large numbers of leading international insurance companies are based in Hamilton, making it a global reinsurance centre. Those internationally owned and operated businesses that are physically based in Bermuda - of which there are around four hundred - are represented by the Association of Bermuda International Companies. In total, over 1,500 exempted or international companies are currently registered with the Registrar of Companies in Bermuda.
The city is the registered headquarters of Accenture (formerly Andersen Consulting) - the global management consulting, technology services and outsourcing company; and the spirits manufacturer Bacardi. Of the same reason Hamilton is well known to hold the headquarter of many international shipping companies, like DryShips Inc., Frontline Ltd. and Dockwise among others.
The history of Hamilton began in 1790 when the Bermuda Government set aside 145 acres for its future seat, and was officially incorporated in 1793 by an Act of Parliament. The Colony's capital relocated to Hamilton from St George's in 1815. The City lay at the political and military heart of Bermuda over the last two centuries. In addition to the parliament within it, Government House sits to its north, the former Admiralty House of the Royal Navy to its west (both in Pembroke, and the British Army garrison headquarters at Prospect Camp to its East.
The Town of Hamilton became a City with the erection of the Cathedral of the Most Holy Trinity (Church of England) in 1897. A Roman Catholic cathedral was later constructed.
Today, the city overlooking Hamilton Harbour is primarily a business district, with few structures other than office buildings and shops. The City of Hamilton has long maintained a building limit, which states that no buildings may obscure the Cathedral, but in recent months buildings have been planned and areas have started construction on buildings as high as 10 storeys in the city. Bermuda's local newspaper The Royal Gazette reports "If you don't recognise the city, from 15 years ago, we don't blame you as it has changed so much".
The city of Hamilton has many parks for its size. Probably the most notable park in the city is Victoria Park. This park occupies a whole block and was named after the former Queen Victoria. Other parks in the city are Par La Ville Park, Barr's Park, All Buoy's Point Park, and the hidden Cedar Park.