Friday, July 24, 2009

Filoli - House Tour

Before we start the tour, I want to mention that I was not able to take many of the pictures I wanted. There were others touring the house while we were, and finding a view that did not include them was difficult. (Those you do see are my sister & her sister-in-law and one of the docents.) In several cases, I took photos of just one or two elements in a space. Added to that, the light was not particularly good in some rooms. But probably the biggest problem is that I am a rotten photographer! So I'll apologize now, and hope you can get some sense of the beauty & grandeur of this wonderful place from my photos and the online tour!

Here's the Room by Room Tour from the Filoli website. I would suggest you view this to get a good idea of the layout of the house and the room overviews. Then, I'll supplement with my photos in the same order as the on-line tour.
Portico: I did not get a full photo as it was lined with people. There are two of these marble fonts, one on each side of the portico. I love them!

Foyer: Interestingly, like the tour photo, I took one of the plants (begonia) on the either side of the foyer. The metal plant stands are beautiful.

Ladies' & Men's Wating Rooms (Cloak Rooms): The drapes in the Ladies' Cloak Room are original to the house and still pretty.

Transverse Hall: Looking down this 174 foot hall really gave me a sense of the size of the house. We were told that by opening the french doors at each end of the hall, the breezes were able to keep the first floor cool on most warm days.

Reception Room: This is the grandest, most beautiful room in the house. Check out those door aedicules! (New word for me! Wikipedia: Aedicular door surrounds that are architecturally treated, with pilasters or columns flanking the doorway and an entablature even with a pediment over it came into use with the 16th century.)

Here is a closer view of the tapestry. Once, when it was cleaned, it was discovered that the center medallion had been reworked, probably to reflect the new owner's crest, sometime in its 400 year history!

This beautiful 12 panel Chinese screen is massive!

Breakfast Room (Ship Room): The breakfast room was transformed into a model ship room by the Roths. (Matson Navigation)

Kitchen: It's a beaut! I'd love to cook there, but to clean it would be a killer! Luckily for the Bourns, they had 23 live-in servants!

The pastry room! Wouldn't you love to have a room just for pastry?

Butler's Pantry: I loved this room with it's silver vault & dumb waiter!

Dining Room: I only got one photo in the dining room that really turned out...too dark! The second is a close-up of the marble fireplace surround. Gorgeous!

Drawing Room: Love the piano!

See those panels in the window frame? These indicate how thick the walls are. They are actually shutters that could be pulled across the window/french doors to secure the house when the owners were away.

I had to show this French door hardware. (The hardware all over the house is absolutely wonderful!) That little rail with the incremental "bumps" can be pulled up into the catch on the opposite door to hold the door open at varying widths! No doors slamming in the breeze. Clever!

Library: I loved this room. As large as it is, it feels warm and friendly.

I wish I could have taken a better picture of this tapestry chair. It is the original fabric & I want it for MY house!

Study: The only photos I took in the Study were of the wet bar and wine vault. Hmmm...what does that say about me?

Stairwell: My view... I can't tell you how much I would love to see the upstairs room, which are not open on the tour!

Holding Room: This is one of the Filoli Collection display cases and the silk tapestry that hangs between the pair of cases.

Ballroom: What a fairytale room! Every year, on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, Filoli hosts a formal dinner & ball in this room. Sis and I are trying to convince the guys that they WANT to get into a tuxedo and attened! We'll see...

Remember the Sesame Street song, "One of these things is not like the others...One of these things just doesn't belong!"? Hmmm can you guess which thing it is??

Whew! That's it for now. I do have some other detail shots of floors & carpets, etc., I might post one day. I'll post the Formal Garden photos next week sometime. If you can't wait, there is a tour of them on the Filoli website too!
Suffering with house envy, Chris


  1. Hi Chris!

    What a gorgeous place! I love places like that. My favorite is the piano - magnificent!

    Have a great weekend! Hugs, Sherry

  2. Can't think of a better way to spend a afternoon. Wanted to welcome you to my humble blog and say, Now don't be a stranger!

  3. Wow! That house is gorgeous! I can't believe that one door way with the huge crown moulding around it! Awesome!

  4. Thank you so much for visiting me. I was browsing your blog and really love it. I am not sure where Woodside is at the moment. But I can look at a map for that. I see you are in Northern California. So am I. In the wine country area. I love The Cat Who books also. I am thinking that piano may actually be a harpsichord because of the size and shape. It is a beautiful one! My aunt has a harspsichord and has done concerts on it. She also wrote book about harpsichords or something to do with harpsichords anyway. Thank you again for visiting. I will come visit you more.

  5. Oh be still my heart !! That desk is gorgeous ! And the crown moldings are to die for ! I wished I could afford to have a house like that.I'd have a ball decorating it , LOL .

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