AAA Editor Notes
Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens is at 1151 Oxford Rd. (second entrance at Orlando Rd. and Allen Ave.) The library houses one of the world's great collections of rare books and manuscripts, including a Gutenberg Bible, the Ellesmere Manuscript of Chaucer’s “The Canterbury Tales,” and early editions of works by William Shakespeare. The Dibner Hall of the History of Science features rare works covering astronomy, natural history, early medicine and optics.
The Huntington Art Gallery occupies the Beaux Arts mansion built in 1910 by Henry Edwards Huntington, a railroad magnate and prominent rare book collector. It houses British and European art from the 15th- to the early 20th centuries, including Thomas Gainsborough’s “The Blue Boy” and Sir Thomas Lawrence’s “Pinkie.”
The Virginia Steele Scott Galleries of American Art displays paintings from the 1730s to the mid-1900s as well as period furnishings. The Jonathan and Karin Fielding Wing features 18th- and early 19th-century American art. Changing exhibits and major traveling exhibitions are featured in the MaryLou and George Boone Gallery.
The botanical gardens cover 120 acres of the 207-acre estate and embrace 14,000 varieties of plants, shrubs and trees. The Japanese Garden features a furnished Japanese house, and more than a thousand rose varieties thrive in the 3.5-acre Rose Garden, first planted in 1908.
An extensive collection of cacti and other succulents can be seen in the Desert Garden, and the Bing Children’s Garden is divided into four themed areas: fire, earth, air and water. The 5-acre Liu Fang Yuan or The Garden of Flowing Fragrance is a traditional Chinese garden featuring a lake, stone bridges, a rock grotto, a teahouse and several pavilions. The Steven S. Koblik Education and Visitor Center houses an auditorium, event space and an orientation gallery.
Guided premier tour options include the Estate Tour, Chinese Garden Tour, Japanese Garden Centennial Tour and Tea & Tour; advance reservations are required.
Guided tours are available. Food is available. Time: Allow 4 hours minimum.