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Thursday, October 7, 2010

My English Fix….

So I haven’t done a story on one of my favorite styles of architecture which is old English villas, manors or castles ~ In which some have been sitting vacant without anyone to call them home….Have been preoccupied with other things lately and just didn’t have the time to sit down and write about one of my great love affairs with the amazing architecture of a era where attention to detail was so amazing….So it is a dreary rainy Monday morning and I thought what better time to sit and write a story about one of my passions….So as I’m researching I find this story about an amazing mansion called Alder Manor… along with some of the details from that story is my story on this grand ol piece of English architecture !!
Who knew that a near replica the Clue mansion exists, empty and forgotten, in Yonkers?
Not to be mistaken with Boddy Manor, the above is actually Alder Manor, one of the most amazing places.  It’s located in Yonkers, and, unbelievably, it’s completely vacant and has been left to decay for years.
Alder Manor was built in 1912 by William Boyce Thompson, an extremely successful copper magnate. Boyce hired architects to design a 72-room country estate for entertaining (he lived in New York City at the time) on 22 acres of hilltop land in then rural Yonkers. After the death of he and his wife, the mansion fell into ruin as it was traded between owners who had no use for it. Finally, in the past few years, it was purchased by Tara Circle, an Irish cultural group that is dedicated to restoring it.
When you first enter, you find yourself in the enormous Front Hall, with a huge grand staircase off to one side 
Off of this in the south-west corner is my favorite room, The Library:
Oh what a wonderful place this must’ve been to cuddle up on a cold winter night by the fireplace and read one of the many books that line these amazing bookcases….
From a distance, the room looks like it’s in excellent condition. It’s only when you get a little closer that you realize how much restoration is needed. Wood is rotting, the paint is fading and chipped…This ceiling picture gives you a better idea (all in all, a great candidate for restoration):
Next door to the library is what I imagine to be the Ballroom, with rich reds and blues complementing the mahogany woodwork:
A beautiful painting aligns the mantle and you can tell just how much attention to detail that was used in creating this beautiful home…..I wonder if there were any secret passageways hidden away in this mansion, as the English had a knack for doing so ?
There is an indoor pool on the second floor. wow imagine crystal clear blue water and how amazing it would’ve been to take a dip in this pool right before bedtime or to wake you up in the early morn !!
An organ sits at the stair landing of the second floor which connects to pipes way up on the third floor! It’d be awesome to hear this echoing throughout the manor.
There are tons of artistic details to be found everywhere, like this bit of a ceiling painting:
A perfect gazebo, along with a pool: Imagine this in beautiful spring time ~ what a wondrous place to sit and read and enjoy the surrounding beauty ~!!
A beheaded eagle greets you when you enter through the back: But a greeting just the same ;)
A Greek theater, where plays and other entertainments were once performed:
another outdoor pool  !!!
So once again I exit the doors through the snapshots of this beautifully made mansion, wondering what will become of her wonderfully made walls….I think back to a time when so much love and care must have been given to her upkeep…..and I am saddened that such a lovely piece of architecture once again sits abandoned and alone………;(

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