Day 180 - A little Culture NEVER hurts - does it?

Trip Start May 01, 2013
Trip End May 01, 2014

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Flag of United States  , California
Saturday, October 26, 2013

Saturday - Nick's cousin Mike took us to the Huntington Art Gallery, Botanical Gardens and Home of Henry E Huntington (Railroad and Real Estate Magnate) built in 1911.  At first Huntington thought to have a modest home; however his Uncle's widow whom he married (ok, strange) in 1913 had other plans for the home and it grew to 55,000 square feet - OMG.  
Included in the galleries are works by Gainsborough (Blue Boy (c. 1770)); the portrait of George Washington by Gilbert Stuart;as well as countless other famous artists. The European art collection focuses on works from the 15th to early 20th century.  Begun in 1908, it currently consists of about 400 paintings 300 sculptures, 2,400 objects of decorative art, and some 20,000 prints and drawings.  About 1,200 of these objects are on view at a given time.  There is even in the Library the Gutenberg Bible; and the Canterbury Tales, and even the early works of Shakespeare.  Must be nice!!

I was particularly interested in the architecture and the amazing rooms that would have been part of the formal rooms, dining rooms, sitting rooms, hallways and grand staircases and the furnishings and crystal chandeliers.  I was joking with one of the docents saying how he and I would sit down at the formally set table for a little lunch and he said that would be fine, but it would cost $1,000,000 to rent the room.  I asked, does that come WITH the food"??  Yikes...

The grounds are right up there with Buchard Gardens on Vancouver Island.  They had a huge Chinese Garden with large Japanese style buildings, water features, and even a tea room.  We then walked though the Australian Gardens.  There was also a Desert Gardens, Rose Gardens and countless others, including Formal Gardens and lawns and Statues all around.

The total acreage is about 120.

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Pamela on

That mansion and gardens are incredible. Yet another part of California I've not seen. What was I doing all those years anyway?!!! Sheesh

Caroline Jenkins on

Another WOW!

Claudia on

Again, you have provided us with a grand tour! Thanks!! Dick and I will add it to our must see list.

Diane on

We need to see this!!!

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