“Behind Mansion Walls . . . In Duluth, Mn”
My wife and I have just having a great night's sleep in our first night at the Comfort Suites Hotel on Canal Park Dr. and now it would be our first day to leave our room and go see a few things and take pictures. My wife had seen an advertisement in a magazine in the hotel room about the Glensheen Mansion out on 3300 London Road. Drive east on Superior St. until London Road. At the signal light turn right and continue straight on London Road until you come to 3300 London Road which is on the right side of the street.
Anyway, there is a large area for self parking and a clearly marked ticket office where you purchase the tickets. My wife paid our $25.00 apiece for the tickets and proceeded to the stable building where the tour begins and you are escorted up to the house. The outside portable potty is the last chance there for restroom until the end of the tour in the basement of the mansion. The escort through the house talks throughout the tour as you are taken throughout the house. It is a guided tour and you must stay with the tour! A word of caution, NO CAMERA FLASH, NO LEANING AGAINST FURNITURE OR WALLS, NO STEPPING ON THE CARPETS, NO TOUCHING ANYTHING. The tour is interesting and it is amazing how someone can afford a house in 1908 with a cost of over $800,000 then, which is worth over $30,000,000 in today's dollars, but then be afforded "no" rest room (in the basement only) until the end of a hour long walking, talking tour. Why I say amazing there is gold ceilings, walls, gold furniture & decorations imported from all over the world and they don't have the necessities that go with most attractions where admission is paid.
Furthermore there are 5 or 10 gallon jugs throughout the house to put your donations into.
Well, with all the money that house and grounds represent and the $50 admission to walk through a house - it is kind of a slap in the face to me to see donation jugs in a house worth that much money. Another rule -- don't attempt to engage the tour guide in a conversation regarding the Glensheen murders. They are not allowed to talk about it - at all.
On a positive note - they do allow photography without flash and will set your digital camera for you so that it does not flash. There is still plenty of light throughout the house for great pictures with no flash. Better than that, the outside mansion patios, grounds, gardens, creeks, and buildings are very beautiful and this makes for a very interesting and photogenic experience. I'll share all my great photos now accompanied with very brief descriptions attached.
It is my understanding that the mansion was donated to the University of Minnesota and the Congdon family remaining alive have an even bigger estate out somewhere on the West Coast Oregon or Washington. Considering the $25.00 admission charge I think it is in extremely bad taste to have the donation jugs throughout the house. Better yet, charge "less" admission. I have no problems with paid admissions for public attractions. however. it is a little bit of a conflict of terms with the display of all this "wealth and excess" and then ask for donations during the viewing of the same.
Actually, I had much more fun walking through the wealthy downtown stores, shops, & restaurants in the streets of downtown Minneapolis. There I could freely use the flash on my camera for my picture taking as well.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.