Thursday 3 March 2011: Arches
This is part of Eolia, the elegant summer mansion of the Harkness family set on over 230 seaside acres of sweeping lawns, with stately trees and spectacular gardens. It is located in Harkness Memorial State Park.
Named Eolia, for the island home of the Greek god of winds, the mansion was built in 1906 and purchased by Edward and Mary Harkness in 1907. The 200+ acres were a working farm and the mansion served as the Harkness summer home.
The Roman Renaissance Classical Revival-style mansion has 42 rooms and includes a pergola (tearoom) and carriage house. Lush formal gardens flank the mansion on both the east and west lawns, and an Alpine Rock Garden adds to the beauty and splendor of the seaside panorama.
Oddly enough, I have lived in CT all of my life, spending 37 of my 43 years on the shoreline, and I have never been here before! I've always heard of people going here for walks, to view the formal gardens, to listen to concerts....but for whatever reason, I've never been here until today!
It was breathtaking....the mansion was incredible, the gardens were pretty even in the winter time. I can't imagine what they will look like in the Spring and Summer!! It was COLD and very windy, especially on the water, I am now 'cold to the bone'.
Needless to say, I will be visiting often...maybe too often, and you'll be seeing many photos from here. It is a photographers goldmine. Photographers come here for family portraits, engagement photos, and many weddings are held here. I really want to take Jack here for a 'not so professional' photoshoot. There are so many incredible spots, I could probably spend days here and not find all of the little hidden nooks, tucked away in the gardens.