Monday, June 27, 2011

Lynnewood Hall, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

"Lynnewood Hall is a 110-room Neoclassical Revival mansion in Elkins Park, Montgomery County designed by architect Horace Trumbauer for industrialist Peter A. B. Widener between 1897 and 1900. Considered the largest surviving Gilded Age mansion in the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area, it housed one of the most important Gilded Age private art collections of European masterpieces and decorative arts assembled by Widener and his younger son Joseph...

...Built from Indiana limestone, the "T"-shaped Lynnewood Hall (dubbed "The last of the American Versailles" by Widener's grandson) measures 325 feet (99 m) long by 215 feet (66 m) deep. In addition to the large art gallery, the 110-room estate also included a ballroom, swimming pool, wine cellars, a farm and an electrical power plant."


 Great Hall

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Le Petit Trianon, Paris, France

The Petit Trianon is a small château located on the grounds of the Palace of Versailles in Paris, France.

"It was designed by Ange-Jacques Gabriel by the order of Louis XV for his long-term mistress, Madame de Pompadour, and was constructed between 1762 and 1768. But Madame de Pompadour died four years before its completion, and it was subsequently occupied by her successor, Madame du Barry. Upon his accession to the throne in 1774, the 20-year-old Louis XVI gave the château and its surrounding park to his 19-year-old Queen Marie Antoinette for her exclusive use and enjoyment. Marie longed to escape Louis and his court, and he gave her just the place..."

 ...The château of the Petit Trianon is a celebrated example of the transition from the Rococo style of the earlier part of the 18th century, to the more sober and refined, Neoclassical style of the 1760s and onward. Essentially an exercise on a cube, the Petit Trianon attracts interest by virtue of its four facades, each thoughtfully designed according to that part of the estate it would face. The Corinthian order predominates, with two detached and two semi-detached pillars on the side of the formal French garden, and pilasters facing both the courtyard and the area once occupied by Louis XV's greenhouses. Overlooking the former botanical garden of the king, the remaining facade was left bare. The subtle use of steps compensates for the differences in level of the château's inclined location."

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Hôtel Camondo, 63, rue de Monceau, Paris, France

"The mansion was built in 1911 by the Comte Moïse de Camondo, a banker, with architect René Sergent, to set off his collection of eighteenth-century French furniture and art objects. Its design was patterned upon the Petit Trianon at Versailles, though with modern conveniences. Both house and collections were bequeathed to Les Arts Décoratifs in honor of his son, Nissim de Camondo, killed in World War I, and opened as a museum in 1935. More tragedy followed when a few years later Moise’s daughter and her family were deported to Auschwitz where they died.

Today the house is maintained as if it were still a private home preserved in its original condition."