When architect Henry Hobson Richardson designed a 27-room home for John and Frances Glessner in 1885, he created quite a ... More
Glessner House Museum
When architect Henry Hobson Richardson designed a 27-room home for John and Frances Glessner in 1885, he created quite a stir. With its oak-paneled English arts interior and rustic granite exterior flanked by a central courtyard, this home was a sophisticated redefinition of American architecture. The home was the subject of a $850,000 renovation, but nearly all the furnishings are original family appointments. Guided tours available. See website for visitor info. Call for open hours.
This was our first trip to Chicago and a friend had suggested visiting the famous Prairie Avenue district (the original Gold Coast I was told). I am sure glad we took the time to venture a little south of our other destinations. The Glessner House is wonderful and our tour was very infomative - we learned not only about the house but about the history of Chicago and more. We also took the Clarke House tour - the price for the combo was very reasonable for how long they are and how much info we walked away with never knowing before!
It's not often you can visit a museum and feel like moving in but that's what happened here. This 1887 house by a famous Boston architect has a nice collection of antiques but the house itself is the treasure. It might be 120 years old but it feels totally modern. The open, flowing floor plan, the red & sage & terra cotta colors on the walls, the home office off the foyer, the main floor master suite, the big windows, the marble sink, the copper counters would be at home in a brand-new house. We picked up a few ideas we'll incorporate in our own home when its time. No wonder this place is famous.
Our tour guide was friendly and the only negative was this was a little off the main drag but it was worth it. There's a nice little coffee shop next door.
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