Just minutes from the city but seemingly ages away, the Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens is a 14 acre estate that serves as part of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Once owned by Houston philanthropist Ina Hogg, the striking house is surrounded by beautiful gardens and manicured hedges and welcomes visitors year-round. Several ornamental gardens showcase both a classical attention to detail and an integration with the natural, wild woodlands. Many of the individual gardens are in fact named for a classical statue of a goddess within.
The house itself reflects changes in American architecture and style from the colonial to the Victorian era. It demonstrates both Southern/Spanish Creole and Northern influences in design. Inside, the stately collection of antiques furnishings, ceramics, paintings, textiles, and silver is one of the finest in the country. Nearly 5,000 objects on display collectively tell the story of American decorative arts from 1620 to 1870.
The Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens is located in the historic River Bend area of Houston. It’s open year-round, with both guided and self guided tours of the home and gardens available daily (reservations recommended.) Admission to the house costs $12.50 for adults and $6.25 for children 10-18.