Step Into Another World: The Historic House Museums of the Berkshires

Visit Berkshires historic House Museums, like Herman Melville's Arrowhead!

Spring has sprung! Though there can still be a bit of a nip in the air, the sun is out, the birds are singing, and the flowers are blooming! Now is the perfect time to visit the historic house museums of the Berkshires!

The Berkshires have so much to offer: scenery, history, culture, shopping, dining, and more. Once the weather begins to warm, it can be hard to choose what to do and see first! We often suggest one or more of the many historic house museums of the Berkshires. Many of them reopen their doors in May, so now is a great time to see them freshened up after winter.

Visiting the homes of authors, artists, statesmen, or those simply very well off can be quite interesting and instructive. The opportunity to walk the same floors and fields a famous person once did can do more than just show you how they lived. Visiting a historic home may also provide insight into what drove, inspired, or otherwise influenced the lives of these fascinating people.

The Berkshires have a great many historic house museums that you can visit and explore. In fact, five of the best house museums are within ten minutes of our Berkshires B&B. One is right down the street!

Berkshires Historic House Museums

Freylinghuysen Morris Home and Studio
92 Hawthorne Street, Lenox
The Bauhaus-inspired Frelinghuysen Morris House and Studio in Lenox is a historic house museum of American Abstract Artists George L.K. Morris and Suzy Frelinghuysen. You’ll see the artists’ original furnishings, collected art, unique home, and 46 acre estate.
www.frelinghuysen.org

Visit Berkshires historic House Museums, like Ventfort Hall!

Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum

Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum
104 Walker Street, Lenox
Ventfort Hall is a Jacobean-style mansion and museum listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It was also used as a set in the 1999 film, Cider House Rules. Visit for tours of the estate or attend one of their many events: concerts, lectures, tea socials, and more.
gildedage.org

The Mount – Edith Wharton’s Home
2 Plunkett St, Lenox
Come tour the magnificently restored estate & gardens of author, Edith Wharton! The Mount, house and grounds, was designed by Edith Wharton. Fascinating and beautiful.
www.edithwharton.org

Naumkeag
5 Prospect Hill Rd, Stockbridge
This Gilded Age mansion is the former country estate of noted New York City lawyer Joseph Hodges Choate. The stunning home is filled with original furnishings and art and surrounded by ten acres of iconic gardens.
http://www.thetrustees.org

Herman Melville’s Arrowhead
780 Holmes Road, Pittsfield
Arrowhead was the home of American author Herman Melville during his most productive years, 1850–1863. Yep – this 18th century farmhouse is where Melville wrote Moby Dick! Visitors will enjoy guided tours, the museum shop and more.
www.mobydick.org

Brook Farm Inn
15 Hawthorne St, Lenox
Our Victorian home here in western Massachusetts may not be a house museum but it is a historic Berkshires treasure! Accommodations include 15 guest rooms and a carriage house surrounded by trees and award-winning gardens. You’ll feel serene and secluded at our Berkshires B&B but, as shown above, the best of the Berkshires are at your fingertips! Book your stay at Brook Farm Inn today!

Don’t Miss "Victor Borge: Take One" Tea & Talk At Ventfort Hall!

Victor Borge: Take One at Ventfort Hall, March 25th, 2017Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum just announced the presentation of “Victor Borge: Take One” Tea & Talk with Rikke Borge, March 25th, 2017! This rare and exciting event returns by popular demand, as anyone familiar with Victor Borge will understand!

Victor Borge (1909-2000) was a Danish-American conductor, concert pianist, and comedian. He achieved fame and popularity through Europe and the U.S. with his unique blend of classical music and comedy.

The key to Victor’s success was the depth of his talent. Not only was he hysterically funny, he could actually play the piano – and not just a little. Victor Borge regularly performed with top symphony orchestras as a world-renowned concert pianist. As an entertainer, he was one of a kind, generating packed houses of international audiences whenever he appeared. (more…)

12 of the Best Attractions in Downtown Lenox, MA

Downtown Lenox, MA, is a great place to walk, shop, and explore, taking in the small-town hub. During your stay at Brook Farm Inn, be sure to enjoy the local attractions, many of which are located in Downtown, Lenox, MA. Tour the Ventfort Hall Mansion & Gilded Age Museum, buy a new outfit at Berkshire Classic, or grab an ice cream cone at The Scoop. Even better, do all three in a row. With their convenient Downtown Lenox, MA, locations, you can visit all 12 of these attractions!

Ventfort Hall Mansion & Gilded Age Museum

Ventfort Hall is the star of the show in Downtown Lenox, MA. This mansion and museum is open daily, year round and hosts concerts and events along with its permanent exhibits and consistently changing exhibits. The current Bellefontaine Decorative Arts Exhibit features the history of one of Lenox’s most lavish country houses.

Berkshire Classic

Berkshire Classic continues a 50-year tradition of carrying leather and silver. Handbags, wallets, and jewelry are the main merchandise you will find here, great for bringing back as gifts from Lenox. The family-run business has works by artisans from around the world as well as unique items you can’t find anywhere else.

McLaughlin

McLaughlin is a great retail store in Downtown Lenox, MA. The shopfront started on Manhattan’s Upper East Side in 1977 and has extended through the Northeast with its high tier yet comfortable facade. This classic American clothier has the latest men’s and women’s styles at prices that match the high quality.

Lenox Yoga

Lenox Yoga is the ideal space to relieve stress in Downtown Lenox, MA. Classes incorporate easy to vigorous forms of Hatha, Kriya, Kripalu, Ashtanga, Vinyasa, and more. A drop-in session will just cost you $15.  

Lenox Coffee

For a laid-back hangout with espresso, try Lenox Coffee in Downtown Lenox, MA. This coffee shop gets its blends from the Barrington Coffee Roasting Company, and its Main Street location is ideal for a caffiene boost during your shopping and exploring excursion.  

Church Street Cafe

Whether you’re stopping in for lunch, dinner, a drink, or dessert, Church Street Cafe is a wonderful Downtown Lenox, MA, Try the summer fish tacos, parma flatbread, or quiche of the day at the bar or sit down for couscous salad, gumbo, or a roasted eggplant and goat cheese sandwich. Top it off with a slice of white chocolate and maple cheesecake.

Haven Cafe & Bakery

A great place to stop for some delicious baked goods to boost your energy is Haven Cafe & Bakery in Downtown Lenox, MA. Choose from delicious treats such as German chocolate cupcakes, molasses ginger cookies, caramel turtle bars, coconut macaroons, scones, pecan sticky buns, lemon pound cake, and even gluten-free carrot cake. Yum!

The Scoop

Treat yourself to an ice cream cone from The Scoop in Downtown Lenox, MA. It’s the perfect treat, and this sweets cafe makes its own ice cream on-site in cozy flavors such as cider donut, bourbon caramel, mocha almond, pumpkin chip, and hazelnut. You can also get some fruity scoops, like banana cream pie, blueberry ginger, lemon blueberry swirl, and pink lemonade sorbet.

Lenox Town Library

Couldn’t fit enough books in your suitcase? No worries! Check out a book at the Lenox Town Library or take a break and read there in between exploring Downtown Lenox, MA. 

Colorful Stitches

This designer yarn shop in the Berkshires offers novelty and fiber yarns for the hand knitter and crocheter. If that is your hobby, then Colorful Stitches is the right place to shop. Select from over 8,000 yarns and then sort through buttons and pattern books to complete your look in mind.

Nejaime’s Wine Cellars

Nejaime’s Wine Cellars, established in 1970, is a great spot in Downtown Lenox, MA, to find some pinots and parmesans. A variety and wines and cheeses are offered at this wine cellar, as well as champagnes, spirits, and beer. Find some unique local beverages to enjoy during your stay at Brook Farm Inn.

Bagel & Brew

For a quick recharge between bouts of shopping in Downtown Lenox, MA, visit Bagel & Brew. These delectable bagels are simply some of the best in Massachusetts. Try the buffalo garlic parmesan cream cheese on top of your bagel of choice, and you won’t regret it!

Downtown Lenox, MA, Back to Brook Farm Inn

After enjoying your adventures in Downtown Lenox, MA, come back to the Brook Farm Inn for a satisfying sleep in The Berkshires. Then wake up to a divine breakfast and get ready to explore even more! For more to do in the area, download our free vacation guide!