Venture out to the beautiful hills of Western Massachusetts when springtime flowers are in peak bloom. Discover why this area—the Berkshires—became the playground for Gilded Age writers and artists during visits to many of the nation’s most fascinating historic properties, including the homes of Edith Wharton, Herman Melville, and Daniel Chester French, a National Trust Historic Site.
- Pricing from
- Trip Type
- Closer to Home, Group Travel Tour
- Departure Dates
Jun 5, 2022 - Jun 10, 2022
Accommodations at The Red Lion Inn, Stockbridge
A founding member of the Historic Hotels of America program, the iconic Red Lion Inn has been welcoming travelers to the Berkshires for more than two centuries and is one of the few American inns operating continuously since before 1800. It has the distinction of hosting six U.S. presidents! The Inn has 108 individually decorated guestrooms each with its own unique New England charm, coupling old-fashioned comfort with modern amenities, all in the confines of a beautiful historic structure! Its perfect location in the heart of the quaint village of Stockbridge makes it an ideal base for exploring many of the Berkshires’ cultural and historical attractions.
Cancellation by participant must be made in writing to ISDI and is effective only upon acknowledged receipt by ISDI. There is a non-refundable registration and planning fee of $500 per person regardless of cancellation date. Written cancellation received by ISDI on or before February 3, 2022: full refund minus $500 per person registration and planning fee. Written cancellation received by ISDI between February 4 and April 21, 2022: full refund minus $1,750 per person cancellation fee (includes registration and planning fee). Written cancellation received by ISDI on or after April 22, 2022: no refund. Tour registration is non-transferable. In the case of cancellation, substitutions are not allowed. After the tour has commenced, no refunds will be issued for any reason including, but not limited to, unused portions of tour. If the tour is cancelled by ISDI or National Trust Tours due to low enrollment, active registrants will receive a full refund of all tour payments.
JUNE 5, 2022 Welcome to the Berkshires
Fly into Albany, New York, and board a private motorcoach to transfer to the Red Lion Inn in Stockbridge, Massachusetts. Enjoy a relaxing afternoon either strolling around quaint downtown Stockbridge or lounging in the rocking chairs on the Red Lion Inn’s front porch. Attend a welcome dinner in the antique-filled dining room at the Red Lion Inn.
JUNE 6, 2022 Gilded Age Summer Retreats
Much of the day is dedicated to the lavish early 20th-century architectural gems that bring special renown to the Berkshires region. Spend the morning at the National Trust’s Chesterwood, the magnificent home and studio of Daniel Chester French, most famous for sculpting Abraham Lincoln for the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC. Following a casual lunch at the Norman Rockwell Museum café, enjoy a docent-led tour of this outstanding museum. Finish your day at Naumkeag, an unparalleled 44-room Gilded-Age country estate with
renowned gardens. Return to the Red Lion Inn for an independent evening.
JUNE 7, 2022 Bunny Williams’ Glorious Garden
Drive to Falls Village, Connecticut, and be welcomed by renowned interior designer Bunny Williams. Enjoy a tour of her stunning private garden led by her personal gardener. Visit Ms. Williams’ 100 Main, a home goods store filled with high end crafts by talented local artists. Enjoy a delicious lunch in a historic inn. Back in Massachusetts, visit the Ashley House in Sheffield, listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Hear about the intertwined stories of John Ashley and his slave Mum Bett (Elizabeth Freeman), the first enslaved person in Massachusetts to win a freedom suit. This historic home is filled with artifacts and decorations from the 17th and early 18th centuries. The evening is at leisure.
JUNE 8, 2022 Fine Art in the Berkshires
Visit Arrowhead, the historic home where Herman Melville lived during the most productive years of his life and where he wrote Moby Dick. Continue to Mass MoCA in North Adams, the largest center for contemporary arts in the United States, encompassing a vast complex of 19th-century mill buildings that have been masterfully repurposed. Following lunch, enjoy an architectural tour of the complex and see highlights from the museum’s collection. Finish your day at the Clark Art Institute. See the exquisite Clark Center designed by Tadao Ando that opened in 2014 and take a guided tour of the museum’s gallery highlights. The collection spans styles and centuries, ranging from Renaissance European works to American decorative arts pieces. The evening is at leisure.
JUNE 9, 2022 Edith Wharton’s Estate The Mount
Spend the morning at Edith Wharton’s home, The Mount. This preserved turn-of-the-century home, designed and built by Edith Wharton in 1902, is filled with beautiful art and furniture and adorned with a stunning garden. Enjoy a delightful luncheon on the villa’s terrace overlooking the formal gardens. Next visit Ventfort Hall, a Jacobean Revival brick mansion that was built for J.P. Morgan’s sister. It boasts beautifully carved solid wood paneling and stunning stained glass. Attend an elegant farewell dinner in one of the area’s best restaurants.
JUNE 10, 2022 Farewell Stockbridge
Depart for the Albany airport stopping along the way at the Hancock Shaker Village, a living, working museum set on 1,200 acres of farm, woodland, and pasture. The museum is home to amazing architecture, most notably the enormous round stone barn, which is a testament to Shaker design and innovation. Arrive at the Albany airport in time to catch mid-afternoon flights home.
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