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Tring, England, United Kingdom
July 18, 2010
London, United Kingdom
December 10, 2000
To find it, come out of Turnham Green tube, turn left onto Chiswick High Street until you reach the signs pointing south for Chiswick House. Or alternately walk along the river from Hammersmith, Chiswick House is at the end of the Thames Walk.
The house itself was built as a "temple to the arts" and was where Lord Burlington used to entertain his friends Swift, Handel and Alexander Pope. It's front facade is a magnificent with a Corinthian portico complete with Doric columns and statues. And its octagonal shape houses beautiful rooms, with the upper floor containing the sumptuous Blue Velvet room that has impressive views of the gardens.
The gardens themselves, for me, are the main attraction. Hedges, topiary, urns, fountains and copies of Roman statuary all blend together. A recreated Greek temple runs the length of a lake where a newly restored cascade pours into the waters.
If you tire of the House and gardens, follow the north entrance out and walk east along the A4 for a few minutes and you will come to Hogarths house. Built in the 18th century when the surrounding area was all fields and countryside, this contains works from the artist and satirist including 'a rakes progress' and 'gin lane'.
Only in London could you have an aristocrat and an anti-establishment satirist living side by side.
From journal London - Cultural Powerhouse of Europe