Exploring the Historic Filoli Estate in Woodside

Unearth the charm of the Filoli Estate in Woodside, steeped in rich history and enveloped in breathtaking beauty, perfect for a delightful day exploring the back roads of the Bay Area.

History of the Filoli Estate

Filoli Estate, tucked away in Woodside, traces its intriguing roots back to the gold rush entrepreneur, William Bowers Bourn II. Known intimately as the ‘Bourn-Roth Estate,’ it stands as a monumental testament of the Bold Period, animation rich tales of California’s robust history.

The Filoli Estate serves as a vibrant reminder of California’s golden age, heavily influenced by the rich tastes and eclectic interests of the illustrious Bourn family.

The Bourns were an illustrious family, known not only for their wealth but their distinguished aesthetic sense. Their eclectic interests and rich tastes significantly influenced Filoli’s architecture and landscape. Today, their legacy serves as a captivating window into the quintessence of the gilded age.

The Origins of Filoli

The Filoli estate’s design was heavily influenced by the love for European art and the changing social scene during the turn of the 20th century by its creator, William Bowers Bourn II. He desired an abode that reflected elegance, sophistication, and charm, akin to the high society lifestyle he admired.

Bourn sought to create Filoli as a peaceful retreat away from the hustle-bustle of city life. His chief motivation was rooted in his longing for a self-sustaining, sophisticated country estate where he could entertain guests, cultivate natural beauty, and enjoy his later years in tranquility.

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Notable Features and Architecture

The grandeur of Filoli’s architecture is a sight to behold. Craftsmanship resonates in every corner, from the stately Georgian manor to the elegant Gothic-style library, creating an immersive journey through design history.

Filoli’s distinctive allure lies not just in its architectural prowess, but also in its bespoke attractions. Stroll the eloquent ballroom or the tranquil reflecting pools, and experience firsthand the timeless charm this estate emanates.

Filoli in Popular Culture

Hard to forget, Filoli’s stunning manor and gardens have decorated the silver screen in numerous hits. Its grandeur served as a backdrop in blockbuster films like ‘Heaven Can Wait’ and the unforgettable ‘Joy Luck Club’.

Popular media has often showcased Filoli; its classic elegance resonating through shows and films. Remember the 80s? Those were grand days for Falcon Crest viewers, who may recall Filoli posing as the series’ central mansion.

From remote TV series to modern Hollywood movies, the Filoli’s magic endures. Most recently, it graced viewers in the widely popular Netflix series, ‘The Last Letter From Your Lover’, cementing its perennial charm in popular culture.

Exploring the Estate Gardens

Submerge yourself in Filoli’s blossoming gardens, a sensory feast of vibrant hues, sweet scents, and the gentle rustle of nature’s symphony. Spend a day marveling at nature’s artistry, meticulously crafted and diligently preserved over the years.

Feel the thrill of navigating through Fioli’s lush gardens, a labyrinth of color and aroma. Be it the burst of color in the Rose Garden or the serene elegance of the Sunken Garden, every corner offers a refreshing surprise waiting to be discovered.

Overview of the Gardens

The Filoli Gardens are a horticultural playground overflowing with beauty, history, and charm. It’s no wonder why this should be your top daycation option.

  • Enter a world of floral wonder with more than 500 varieties of roses.
  • Explore the diverse blends of colors in the Sunken Garden.
  • Treat your senses with rare flowers, be they early spring bulbs or dramatic summer annuals.
  • Take part in seasonal festivities and events celebrating horticulture.
  • Find inspiration and unique garden essentials at the Garden Shop.

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Highlights of the Rose Garden

The Rose Garden at Filoli is an enchanting spectacle, adorned with a profusion of roses in a mesmerizing array of colors and fragrances. It’s the ideal spot for a romantic saunter or a delightful picnic amidst the blooms.

  • Expect to find roses from different time periods, including varieties dating as far back as the 17th and 18th centuries.
  • Take your time to inhale the intoxicating scents, identifying the subtle differences.
  • Appreciate the masterful design, which optimizes the mix of sun and shade for the roses.
  • Pack a picnic basket to soak in the beauty while enjoying a meal.
  • Consider having an afternoon tea in the garden during the open tea time.

The Sunken Garden Experience

Immerse yourself in the serene beauty of Filoli’s Sunken Garden. Full of stunning ornamental features, it’s the perfect spot to unwind and soak in the history and quiet tranquility.

  • Stroll around the charming pool circled by Italian cypress trees.
  • Relax on one of the benches and enjoy the peace that the garden brings.
  • Admire the bronze work and the moss-grown, tiered fountain.
  • Discover the colourful array of seasonal blooms accenting the walkways.

Don’t Miss the Garden Shop

Curate your dream garden with treasures waiting for you at Filoli’s Garden Shop. It’s a haven for every green thumb, seasoned or budding, filled to the brim with unique finds to transform your space.

Explore the wealth of the Filoli Garden Shop. Bursting with unique, horticultural treasures, it’s where green thumbs can unearth an array of special pieces to take their garden to the next level.

Touring the Historic House

Every step you take on a tour through the historic Filoli House is like walking through the pages of history. The intimate setting of ornate rooms, filled with period artifacts perfectly preserved, is a fascinating display of old-world grandeur.

The Filoli House tour is a rare opportunity to experience the essence of San Francisco as it was a century ago. The exquisite architecture, detailed interior design, and priceless art collections demonstrate a rich narrative of this Bay area treasure.

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A Glimpse into the Past

Stroll past preserved parlors and bedrooms at the Filoli Estate, where each corner captures a bygone era. It’s a photo haven, particularly the grand Ballroom and the serene Drawing Room, brimming with rich history and artistic elegance.

Did you know the Estate was named using the first two letters of each word in William Bourn’s life motto ‘Fight for a just cause; Love your fellow man; Live a good life’? This special touch adds another layer to the magnificence of the Filoli Estate.

Rooms and Artifacts to See

Venturing into the nooks and crannies of Filoli unearths a goldmine of antiquities. Discover pristine vintage treasures, from authentic period furniture to timeless art pieces, which grace every corner of this iconic mansion.

Beyond the main rooms lies Filoli’s best-kept secret—underappreciated niches filled with hidden gems. From quaint, beautifully adorned servant quarters to the treasure-filled attic, each corner reveals a new facet of Filoli’s history worth exploring.

Filoli Estate Events and Activities

Filoli’s calendar is peppered with events for every season — the Tulip Days in spring are a riot of color; the Summer Nights host a variety of live performances; fall sees the Harvest Festival, and Winter Lights illuminates the grounds beautifully. A joyous occasion for any visitor.

When it comes to family-friendly activities, Filoli has got you covered. Weekly Family Fun Days, including bug hunts and storytelling sessions, can easily keep the young ones entertained. Even better, regular Art After Dark events offer a creative outlet for teens.

For those looking for more immersive experiences, Filoli’s themed self-guided tours and horticulture classes are a huge hit. The estate also hosts special holiday events. Everyone leaves Filoli with memories of an unforgettable day spent exploring a historic treasure.

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