Friday, 28 September 2012

Strawberry Hill

Strawberry Hill House is opulent & ostentatious. An amazing summer house that has survived more than 250 years of ownership. I couldn’t have been disappointed, not now that this gorgeous home has been loving refurbished and lavishly restored back to it original hedonistic days of the late 1790’s!

This Georgian jewel shines brightly despite the gloomth! A flamboyant Gothic revival house that exudes the charm of a gingerbread cottage-cum-castle. All delicately frosted and deliciously decorated, like a Christmas cake, complete with ornate baubles and over the top.

The strength of colours chosen, the imaginative stained glass work, the ornate ceilings and embossed doors and intricately carved locks are quite magnificent.

Horace Walpole designed the hallways to be deliberately dark and gloomy so that when his visitors entered the ornate decorated rooms they were overcome with awe at the bright gaiety of the light. He even produced his own guide book of his summer home. Usually the housekeeper took the visitors about the place but if the guests were posh enough then Walpole would be their personal guide.

If you haven’t been to visit Strawberry Hill yet then I would suggest you book a trip soon. It’s very easy to book 'timed entry tickets' on line and its right in the heart of Twickenham. Easily accessible via road or rail or river.

I found it impossible to pick one room as my favourite because there were too many temptations!

And to think that Walpole’s own Gothic novel The Castle of Otranto, inspired Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein !

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