Friday, October 3, 2014

Day tripping close to home

I don't know how I happened across this place on the internet, but was amazed that there was such a neat gem only an hour from our house. Located in Stockbridge, MA, Naumkeag was the 44 room summer cottage of the Choate family. It was donated to the Trustees of Reservations in 1959 and is open to the public. One thing that makes it unique is that all the furniture are actual pieces that were in the home--not period pieces like in most museums or home tours.

We started with the inside guided tour. It is filled with unique furnishings and rooms with beautiful views and two turrets.

This was the gong that sounded the begin of our tour. Its loud gong could easily summon anyone from the surrounding gardens. 

These were the chaise lounges by the door we entered. The "Great Seat" facing to view the sun setting beyond Tom Ball Mountain.
First was the dining room. President McKinley was a guest here.

They loved books as much as we do.

I love the piano in the turret.
This is the view from the front hall.
I love this bench in the front hallway. It is opposite a beautiful fireplace.

One of the many bedrooms.
Another view of this same bedroom.

The other part of the bedroom above.


The reflection from the lamp shows in this picture but I wanted to post it because it is interesting. First the bedroom had many pictures. These pictures were actually hat boxes that the ladies liked so much that they had them put in picture frames. This one that caught my eye said Sandy Hook with a picture of a lighthouse.


This is my favorite bedroom. It is on the 2nd floor and the door opens to an enclosed porch overlooking a beautiful garden and a mountain view. There was a refreshing breeze drifting in the room. I could just imagine sitting on that porch with a hot beverage and reading or writing in the fresh air surrounded by such beauty.


This is a view of the garden from a different bedroom window.

Fireplace in a bedroom.

Another neat turret area.


This is from the third floor--servants' quarters.

Servants' quarters and where visiting children slept.

After the 45 minute tour of the house, we went outside on this perfect day to explore the many beautiful gardens.


Bronze statue: Young Faun with Heron 1887
My friend, Kathy, is right at home here!


Water Runnel 1938 Water collects in the middle and connects to the fountains in the Blue Steps.

This swamp white oak tree was the place the Choates picnicked and is said to have been influential in their decision to purchase the 49 acre estate.
Pagoda 1936
Chinese "philosopher stone" on marble base.
Long teak bench

Linden Walk
View from the top
There are fountain in this blue area.
The Blue Steps. 1938. This is said to be considered one of the most famous built landscapes in America.
Evergreen garden
Kathy and I. A road trip again after many, many years.
Rose garden


Mable Choate had a love of China, hence this Chinese-style temple.
Circular Moon Gate

Of special note, this is also quite close to the Norman Rockwell Museum and across the street, we did not have enough time, but there is the National Shrine of Devine Mercy. We rode through quickly. and will have to put this on a list to return.
I highly recommend a visit to Naumkeag. It is only open seasonally. I am often one to say, "Been there done that," but I would go see this again.

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