Jennifer Bradley Franklin 2017-12-28 01:29:44
Good Bones If you build it, they will come. Georgia boasts exquisite architectural structures far and wide, from stately Greek Revival estates to ornate Victorian homes and sprawling antebellum plantations to soaring modern marvels. With guided tours and behind-the-scenes access, Georgia’s architectural gems are just waiting to be explored. These destinations offer visitors a well-rounded architectural education that includes history, culture, and art, all with a touch of Georgia’s signature Southern hospitality. 1 Day One The Crescent, Valdosta Start your pilgrimage with a visit to this stately neoclassical structure, built in 1898. The three-story building is on the National Register of Historic Places and features a two-story, crescent-shaped portico with thirteen enormous columns (representing the original thirteen colonies). Guided tours for groups of ten or more are led by volunteer members of local garden clubs and may be arranged with a donation. thecrescentatvaldosta.com Pebble Hill Plantation, Thomasville This sprawling former shooting plantation spans 3,000 lush acres, so allow plenty of time to explore. The centerpiece is the expansive, two-story 26,000-square-foot main house, featuring a blend of neoclassical and colonial architecture. Don’t miss the stables complex, log cabin school, pump house, and formal gardens, which are filled with native plants. House tour audio narratives are available in French, Japanese, German, and Spanish, in addition to docent- led tours in English—with a Southern accent, naturally. pebblehill.com Lapham-Patterson House, Thomasville Round out your tour day at this Queen Anne–style property, named a National Historic Landmark. Built as a winter getaway for wealthy Chicago merchant C.W. Lapham in 1884, the home is exemplary of Victorian ingenuity, featuring a hexagonal dining room, fish scale shingles, and a cantilevered balcony. Lapham, who survived Chicago’s Great Fire of 1871, designed the nineteen-room home to have ample escape routes, to the tune of twenty-four exterior doors. The property welcomes tour groups of all ages, with a focus on students. thomascountyhistory.org OVERNIGHT IN THOMASVILLE 2 Day Two Hay House, Macon The Hay House is a stunning example of Italian Renaissance Revival style, topped by a two-story cupola and featuring sparkling stained glass. Though dating back to 1859, the four-story, 18,000-square-foot mansion was technologically advanced for its day and featured central heat, a speaker- tube system, and even hot and cold running water. Groups of twenty or more receive a discount with an advance reservation. For a chance to see a secret room, book the behindthe- scenes tour, offered twice a month. hayhousemacon.org History & Heritage Tour, Madison Don’t miss a chance to view some of the state’s finest examples of antebellum architecture in charming Madison, where knowledgeable local guides lead custom group tours. Choose your tour highlights from properties in the quaint city’s historic district. Visit the 1809 Piedmont Plain–style Rogers House; the Morgan County African American Museum; the 1811 Greek Revival–style Heritage Hall; and Rose Cottage, built in 1891 by Adeline Rose, who was born to enslaved parents. visitmadisonga.com OVERNIGHT IN MADISON 3 Day three High Museum of Art, Atlanta Whether you come to see its 15,000 works of art or jaw-dropping architecture, a visit to the High is a must. The original 1983 building, with its dynamic, sculptural design, won celebrated American artist and architect Richard Meier the 1984 Laureate of the Pritzker Architecture Prize. In 2005, Italian architect Renzo Piano added three new buildings and a special roof system featuring 1,000 scopes to filter ethereal natural light into the upper galleries. In addition to live music performances, lectures, and classes, the museum offers group tours with advance reservations. high.org Southern Trilogy Historic Homes, Roswell Historic Roswell is an architecture buff’s dream, with three stately homes built between 1839 and 1845 in close proximity to one another. Start with Bulloch Hall, the childhood Greek Revival–style home of Mittie Bulloch, mother of President Theodore Roosevelt. Barrington Hall, constructed by Roswell’s founders, features metro Atlanta’s only open-to-the-public antebellum gardens. Georgian-style Smith Plantation includes ten original outbuildings and artifacts from the original family. Tours of fifteen or more guests should book in advance and are available in French and German. southerntrilogy.com BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, Lilburn Opened in 2007, this Hindu place of worship is the largest of its kind outside of India, and features five towering pinnacles, eighty-six decorative ceilings, and 340 columns. Designed in India, the 34,000 pieces of pink sandstone, Carrara marble, and limestone were carved there and shipped to Georgia, where they were pieced together like a massive puzzle on the property’s thirty acres. The temple provides guided tours to groups of ten or more with advance notice, and audio guides are available in a variety of languages. baps.org/atlanta DON’T-MISS DINING The Swanson, Perry Here, you can take in the historic architecture of the Swanson, which began construction in 1790. As if supping in beautiful environs weren’t enough, don’t miss the decadent fried green tomatoes, Southern fried chicken, and famous buttery biscuits. This charming Middle Georgia favorite offers set and custom group menus. theswanson.com MUST-STOP SHOPPING Tannery Row Artist Colony, Buford Prepare to fall in love with the work of painters, printmakers, mixed-media artists, and potters at this vibrant collection of open studios. The space, situated in historic downtown Buford, offers complimentary admission for visitors to watch as nationally acclaimed artists create their unique wares, all available for purchase. tanneryrowartistcolony.com
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