Adapted from, Alexander Thomson - The Unknown Genius by Gavin Stamp. Laurence King Publishing 1999.
Alexander Greek Thomson was chief architect to the Second City of the Empire and drew his inspiration from far off lands despite never once leaving the country of his birth. From unique houses to churches, villas to significant commercial developments such as the Egyptian Halls, Thomson's signature is writ large around Glasgow. Ornate pillars and intricate design mean that a Thomson property is more a work of art and an attractive always-functional building. Throughout his working life he showed that the design of city buildings can rise above both the boring and mundane.
Thomson's finest commercial building was the Egyptian Halls. Work started in March 1870 to provide new commercial premises for iron manufacturer James Robertson but in true Thomson style the completed work was far more than a mundane commercial property. A trade journal of the time described the halls as 'probably the architect's most successful effort... we doubt if its equal for originality and grandeur could be found in any city'.