Sunday, June 2, 2013


On a recent Saturday, I spent an enjoyable few hours at Hillwood, the Washington, D.C. home of Post Cereal heiress Marjorie Merriweather Post.
Marjorie Merriweather Post bought Hillwood in 1955 and soon decided her home would be a museum that would inspire and educate the public. Her northwest Washington, D.C. estate endowed the country with the most comprehensive collection of Russian imperial art outside of Russia, a distinguished 18th-century French decorative art collection, and twenty-five acres of serene landscaped gardens and natural woodlands for all to enjoy. Opened as a public institution in 1977, today Hillwood's allure stems from the equally fascinating parts that make up the whole. From the captivating life of Marjorie Post to the exquisitely maintained Mansion and Gardens, the experience of Hillwood outshines even the Fabergé Eggs.
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 The front of the mansion

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A Faberge egg

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In the garden

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Another garden picture

The estate was surprisingly easy to get to, even on a traffic-filled Saturday late morning: from the top of the Beltway, Connecticut Avenue south about five miles, into the District, just past the Van Ness Metro stop, turn left into Rich People Territory, left again into Really Rich People Territory, and past the gates of the property. They even have parking.

Back when the property was first built, in the 1920s, the trees were no doubt much smaller and the hill-side view into DC must have been spectacular. Now, surrounded by mature trees, the property feels entirely cut off from the city.

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