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The Mount, Edith Wharton's Home

897 Reviews
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The Mount, Edith Wharton's Home

897 Reviews
Sorry, there are no tours or activities available to book online for the date(s) you selected. Please choose a different date.
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kzsull01 wrote a review Sep 22
Windsor, Connecticut284 contributions212 helpful votes
My husband and I visited the Mount, the home of author Edith Wharton in Lenox, Massachusetts on Friday, September 18th, 2020. We have visited the house, gardens and grounds in the past and have always enjoyed our visits. This is a very historical and inspirational place in the beautiful Berkshires. During our most recent visit, we took the self-guided tour of the house and gardens having timed tickets reserved for 10:30 AM. This self-guided tour was excellent. The guided house and garden tours, which were not available at the time of our visit, have also been excellent, providing different and unique perspectives each time we have taken them. However, we were still able to enjoy our self-guided tour very much. The hand-outs/visitor’s guide provided to us as we entered the estate at the ticket booth and at the gate of the house were quite helpful and provided good background information, being both informative and educational. The hand-outs were interesting to read over even after our visit!! There was an introductory film at the stables. We did not view this film, due to lack of time, having seen it before at the end of our visits and having been at the house multiple times in the past. It is recommended to see this film if it is your first visit and/or if you have the time. This time we started our tour with the self-guided tour of the house, which was immaculate with beautifully well restored rooms. There were capacity limits for each room in the house and direction signs on the floor to help navigate your way through the house and aid in social distancing, which was quite nice. Also, the windows in many of the rooms were open to provide some nice fresh air. There were helpful interpretive staff members/guides available throughout the house to answer any questions. The exhibits throughout the house were all very well done with nice supporting detailed write-ups, all very informative and educational, providing a good lesson in history. My favorite part of the tour was Edith Wharton’s suite, which was nicely laid-out, in particular, her impressive Boudoir!! It was quite nice that she was able to do much of her writing in her bed during the morning hours!! . The self-guided tour also included details on various aspects of Edith Wharton’s life, including details about her writings, her many different humanitarian efforts both during and after World War I, her travels, her time with Teddy Wharton, Walter Berry, William Fullerton, Henry James, who even had his own separate suite in her house, and even with her dogs. Her humanitarian efforts, for which much interesting historical information was provided in the exhibits, were both very impressive and admirable!! There were also rooms with exhibits describing who owned the house and how the house was used after she left. Thankfully the house was able to be restored to its current beautiful state, the way it was when she was living there. It is very unfortunate that she had to leave this impressive house behind when she moved to Paris. The self-guided house tour, as the guided house tour has done in the past, involved touring several rooms in the house, all beautifully restored. The tour gave a great history of the house and Edith Wharton’s life, including the time period prior to when the house was built, while she was living at the house and after she left the house. It was definitely recommended!! After touring the house, we walked through the beautiful gardens of the estate, which was originally Laurel Lake Farm. All the gardens, including the Rock, American, Italian and French Flower gardens. were well organized and beautiful, with many flowers in bloom at the time of our visit and many opportunities to take some nice pictures. The gardens and surrounding landscape were very well maintained and were quite impressive, as they have always been when we visited. This includes the interesting grass staircase built into the landscape and the Lyme Walk with amazing Linden Trees in the American Garden connecting the French Flower and Italian Gardens. Edith Wharton’s love of architectural design, which techniques she used in her design of both the house and outdoor landscape, as well as the symmetry used both within and between the two, could be seen as we walked-through the house and gardens. This was very interesting as well as quite impressive. Also, Edith Wharton’s love of nature and how the estate interfaced with the natural landscape was quite evident from our tour. It was amazing that the gardens were recreated based on photographs and correspondence, which we learned from previous garden tours where the tour guide showed various photographs of both the gardens and house at different points in time. We highly recommend the garden tour when it is available again, but enjoyed the gardens during our self-guided tour, as well. Although we did not take the guided house or guided garden tours this time, because they were not available to take, both of the them have always been excellent and highly recommended when they are being offered. Both provided great details and perspective on the estate, information you may not get from the self-guided tour. We enjoyed our visit to the Mount and would go back again. We highly recommend touring this house and gardens, either on a guided tour or self-guided tour or a combination of both when the guided tours are available. Our tour, which included walking to and from the parking lot to the house, walking through all the beautifully restored rooms in the house, reading the write-ups in each room, touring the gardens and taking pictures both inside and outside the house, took about an hour and a half. This has always been a beautiful place to visit in the Berkshire area, with plenty of free parking, with about a quarter mile walk from the parking lot to the house. So you may need to plan some time to walk to the house from the parking lot, including going through the stables and seeing the video there, which you could also see after touring the house and garden, if you have time. The walk between the parking lot and house is quite nice with scenic well-maintained landscape along the way. We hope that you have the opportunity to enjoy this place as much as we have!  
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Date of experience: September 2020
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SD5 wrote a review Sep 18
Boston, Massachusetts94 contributions30 helpful votes
The Mount is a beautiful large home that has a lot of warmth. Unlike some of the big mansions in Newport, RI you get a sense of living in this one. Depending on how much you decide to read about the occupants it can take an hour or more. Edith Wharton was an interesting lady and ahead of her time. We toured during Covid precautions. If you are with a group (we had 4) you are allowed to stick together as a party and use common sense with room limits. We entered a room with one other occupant in it who was on the other side of the room. The grounds were nice for a short stroll. We also had lunch on the terrace to get more of the scenery and experience. We all had salads that were generous and tasty. Two of us had a glass of the sangria which was refreshing yet with no detection of any alcohol in it. This is a great place to visit on a beautiful day. Visit as a couple or with friends and catch up with one another while enjoying this lovely home.
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Date of experience: September 2020
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Margaret S wrote a review Sep 13
3 contributions
I visited The Mount back in the mid 90’s when they were raising funds to restore. Great exhibit and the grounds are beautiful for a woodland walk. I would watch the movie in the carriage house before doing the house tour.
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Date of experience: September 2020
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David C wrote a review Sep 6
Coventry, Rhode Island2,431 contributions183 helpful votes
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When we planned this trip I kind of felt bad that we didn’t know much about Edith; I hadn’t even heard of her most famous books. Nevertheless she was quite successful in the early 1900s and was the first woman to win the Pulitzer price for “the age of Innocence.” She was only able to live in the “The Mount” for 10 years. Come learn the story. The house is only open till 5pm but the grounds never close and they are beautiful and lovely to walk (Edith and Teddy loved nature). The house is big and beautiful but much more modest then the other “cottages” in Newport, RI and elsewhere. Her home is very practical and simple compared to say “The Breakers.” The gardens are lovely and very photogenic. We all got in for $20.00 as kids and military is free. It was a nice time. Great spot for family pictures and to enjoy some trails.
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Date of experience: September 2020
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marvi62 wrote a review Sep 5
Lafayette Hill, Pennsylvania445 contributions143 helpful votes
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Three of us had a lovely self-guided tour of Edith Wharton's estate yesterday. We knew nothing about her previously. She published over 40 books, was the first woman to be receive an honorary PhD from Yale University, and was the first woman awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. We were actually just looking for things to do in the Berkshires, where we rented a house for a week for a change of pace during this Covid era. We were very pleasantly surprised by what we learned not just about Edith Wharton, but about expectations for women of her era, how advanced and progressive she was for her time, how servants were treated etc. There are about a dozen rooms to tour inside the house, and the signage in each room is well worth reading. There is a beautiful Cafe set up on the covered porch that runs across the rear iof the house in the 2nd floor. The Cafe offers drinks,, snacks and light salads and such. Outside the home, the grounds are beautiful. You can easily spend a few hours relaxing outside if you want. Go online to make advance reservations for the house tour (i think you try walk-in / last minute rsvps too, but capacity is tightly limited to comply with Covid).
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Date of experience: September 2020
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