WOODSIDE, CALIF.–As you drive up a winding road in San Mateo County somewhere between San Jose and Half Moon Bay, the entry gate to Filoli looks eerily familiar. Could it be a page right out of a soap opera called Dynasty? It is! The Aaron Spelling series which ran for 10 years through 1991 featured a fictitious, filthy rich oil magnate, Blake Carrington, and his wife Krystle, played by John Forsythe and Linda Evans. Their mansion in reality was a Bay Area place that you can visit and feel fairly regal and rich.
Filoli estate was seen in the opening credits and exterior shots of the popular TV series known for its female cat fights between Linda Evans and Joan Collins who played Forsythe’s ex-wife, Alexis. The estate –used for filming of a reunion show– is listed on the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
Volunteer gardeners under the direction horticulture staff plant flowers and groom the grounds, which are covered in nearly one million daffodils right now! This weekend guests can visit and see the spectacular displays and throughout the upcoming days and weeks till the flowers fade. While events such as plein air painting and summer concerts are held on the grounds during the spring and summer months, one of the special offerings that might be of interest to photographers and painters allows you to stay after the place closes and take pictures or paint beautiful scenes.
On special Thursdays you get to stick around from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. and soak up the rich seasonal colors. Special dates include: March 22, April 19, May 24, June 21, August 16, September 20 and October 18, 2012. Space is limited, pre-registration is highly recommended. Fee: per day: $25, includes same day admission to Filoli. You are welcome to arrive anytime after 10 a.m. to visit the historic Filoli house and garden and scout locations for your next masterpiece.
Location: 86 Canada Road, Woodside, CA. Phone (650) 364-8300. filoli.org