Saturday, May 8th, Rhonda and I arrived at our appointed time to walk the grounds of the Filoli Estate. Sitting in the foothills of the Santa Cruz mountains, at the south end of Crystal Springs Lake, Filoli, a protected watershed, has offered magnificent valley and mountain views for over a century.
William Bourn privately owned the property from 1912 to 1977. He built Filoli to fulfill his dream to build a self-sustaining country estate. Constructing the name from his motto, FIght for justice, LOve your fellow man, LIve a good life, Bourn dubbed this unique property, Filoli.
William and Lurline Roth purchased the estate after the Bourns passed in 1936, and from 1975-1981, Lurline gifted the house and the formal garden to the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The Filoli Center purchased the remaining property from the Roth family, and the estate opened to the public in 1977. Today all 654 acres of this estate are designated as a National Historic Landmark.
I am so happy to have discovered this gem, reminiscent of the spectacular garden dreams of a bygone era. Most garden enthusiasts I spoke with were unaware of Filoli and its 16 formal garden acres.
One last interesting point about Filoli; remember the hit 1970's show Dynasty, the weekly television drama that took us into the lives of the Carrington's - Blake, Crystal, and Alexis?
It turns out the pilot episode was filmed at the Filoli estate and that the outdoor scenes for the first two seasons were filmed in the gardens and on the grounds of the property.
To learn more about this historic garden and to make your reservation visit The Garden | Filoli