Monthly Archives: September 2016

2016 English Country House Tour

In June 2016, members of our Ambassador’s Circle participated in a spectacular tour of historic and notable sites in London and Norfolk. The tour began with a private tour of Windsor Castle, with privileged access to Her Majesty’s private library, which included a viewing of the famous Leonardo DaVinci anatomical folio acquired by King Charles I. The tour was guided by Mr. Oliver Everett CVO, who is  Librarian Emeritus for Windsor Castle and former Private Secretary to Their Royal Highnesses the Prince and Princess of Wales. Returning to London, participants received a private tour of the Society of Antiquaries of London, located at Burlington House, led by Mr. Dominic Wallace. That evening, a buffet dinner party was hosted by fellow Ambassador’s Circle members Mr. Jason Arbuckle and Mr. Mark Arena at their historic London residence overlooking Hyde Park.

The following day participants ventured north of London to the county of Norfolk, where we received a private tour of Houghton Hall, the early 17thC country house built by England’s first Prime Minister Sir Robert Walpole, and now the seat of the Marquess Cholmondeley. Celebrated not only for its spectacular architecture, the estate boasts award-winning gardens as well. That evening, we were hosted by architectural historian, author and Cambridge professor emeritus, Prof. David Watkin, at his stunning 16thC merchant’s house in old King’s Lynn and received a guided tour through the oldest parts of King’s Lynn. Our next stop on the tour was a visit to Sandringham House, the private residence of Her Majesty the Queen, which included a leisurely stroll through the gardens and surrounding parkland. The final stop on our tour was to enjoy being the personal guests of the Marquess and Marchioness Townshend at Raynham Hall. In addition to receiving a guided tour of this important early 16thC house by Lord Townshend himself, guests enjoyed a harpsichord and mandolin recital in the stunning Marble Hall, followed by dinner in the State Dining Room.

(Photos © Michael Ridgdill)

2016 Lecture & Luncheon

Her Grace The Duchess of Rutland was the guest speaker at our 5th annual Lecture & Luncheon that took place in Palm Beach on February 6, 2016. The topic of her lecture was “Belvoir Castle: At Home with a Noble Family” and emphasized the relationship between Belvoir and celebrated landscape designer Capability Brown. The event concluded with a book signing of Her Grace’s book, “Capability Brown & Belvoir: Discovering a Lost Landscape.” Among the notable attendees were HRH Princess Maria Pia de Bourbon-Parme, Lady Henrietta Spencer-Churchill, and British Consul-General to Miami the Hon. Dave Prodger.

First Republic Bank was the Presenting Sponsor for the event, with additional sponsors Terry and Linda Collier, Smith and Moore Architects, Fernando Wong Outdoor Living Design, Wally Findlay Galleries, The Fine Arts Conservancy, William R. Eubanks Interior Design, Ben Stein of Brown Harris Stevens, Jennifer Garrigues Interior Design, Livingston Builders, Paris Ceramics, and Katherine Shenaman Interiors. Fine Art Connoisseur Magazine and The Palm Beach Jewelry, Art & Antique Show were also supporters.

(Capehart Photography)