Results 11-20of 27 Reviews
August 10, 2005
The grounds are impeccably maintained, and I enjoyed the audio tour, as it lets you go at your own pace. The foundation that manages Elvis’ estate has done a great job of organizing tours and displaying his movie artifacts and costumes for all of his fans to enjoy. This is a definite must-see if you happen upon Graceland!
From journal Musical Memphis
by MCJ graduate
German Valley, Illinois
May 26, 2005
While we were waiting to get on a bus to take us to Graceland, workers there had us take a picture with a backdrop of Graceland’s gates. Our picture turned out okay, but we were too cheap to purchase it. Besides, I wanted to hit the gift shop after the tour. (I ended up purchasing an Elvis Boulevard street sign and post cards.)
We felt the workers there were disorganized when they were trying to get the buses to arrive and load the people up. We even witnessed a couple of workers getting snippy with each other during this. But, finally, our group was loaded and taken to Graceland.
Overall, I enjoyed the Graceland tour, but I didn’t appreciate the audio version of the tour. I find audio tours annoying. I prefer a live person to give a tour. However, touring Elvis’ home was fascinating, even if it had a pretty tacky decor with shag carpet and brightly colored kitchen appliances. But I guess in the’60s and’70s, this decor was hip.
My partner and I thought the best part of the tour was viewing all the records he earned in his career. It was unbelievable—a wall-to-wall collection. And we thought his jumpsuits were extremely elaborate, with sequins and capes. On the more sober side, the memorial site (Meditation Garden) on the grounds was pretty emotional. Some people were crying, mourning over the King. We read memorial messages addressed to him from all over the world. It was evident that this man was loved and missed by thousands worldwide.
I highly recommend you go to Graceland. After leaving there, you will have more insight into this man: his love for his family, especially his mother and daughter, Lisa Marie; his love for his "roots" (he gave a lot money to different charities in Memphis); and his love for his music and fans. In addition, this is great way to pay your respects to the King.
Tickets for touring the house are $20 for adults, $18 for seniors 62 and older and students, $7 for children 7 to 12, and free for children 6 and under. This tour takes 60 to 90 minutes. The platinum tour includes the mansion tour and self-guided tours of Elvis’ two custom airplanes, the Elvis Presley Automobile Museum, and a memorabilia museum called Sincerely Elvis. The ticket price for this is $27 for adults, $24 for seniors and students, $13 for children 7 to 12, and free for children six and under. This tour takes 2.5 to 3 hours.
From journal All Shook Up Over Memphis, TN
Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea
April 25, 2005
From journal Memorial Day in Memphis
March 29, 2005
Graceland may have a reputation as a cheesy attraction for older people, but it can really be quite interesting, or at the very least, amusing as well. It definitely something you should go to see at least once.
Graceland itself is easy to find. Just head south on Interstate 55 to Elvis Presley Boulevard, and then make a right onto it. You will drive a mile or so, and then you will see it. The first thing you will notice is two blue-and-white jet airplanes parked beside the road; Graceland itself is directly across the road from them.
Graceland has a wide assortment of things to look at. There are the planes I mentioned earlier, a car museum, lots of memorabilia, and the mansion itself. The mansion isn’t "huge" by today’s standards, and one of the things that most people say is, "I expected Elvis to have a much bigger house." It’s all decorated in a very 1960/1970s style, with lots of shag carpet, paisley prints, velvet, and bright yellow appliances. There is also a business office, recording studio, racquetball court, fenced-in field with some horses, and a building displaying his records and some of his more outlandish white jumpsuits. There is also his grave site near the pool, which is also home to his family’s remains.
You can do the whole tour, which includes the car museum, planes, other buildings, and house, for $27 (children 7 to 12 are $13, under 7 are free) or choose just to do the mansion for $18. You should really plan to do the whole package just to get the experience. Also, don’t forget to bring a Sharpie or paint marker to write your name on the wall. I think it’s legal, as people do it in broad daylight and the entire wall is covered in messages.
There are hotels close to Graceland, but I don’t recommend them. Graceland is located in a "bad" part of town. It’s very easy to get to, even when staying in an area on the other side of Memphis. The Graceland area is safe during the day, though, and the area directly around Graceland is patrolled by security and police with extra caution. But getting a hotel a few blocks away can lead to car break-ins and other troubles at night. There are also some great places to eat right around Graceland, and if you are looking for authentic Memphis barbeque, any place along E.P. Boulevard is a good bet.
Bring a camera not for the sights, but for the unusual people this destination can attract.
From journal Memphis; Tales of Barbecue,Elvis,and Beale
February 24, 2005
It is a must for everyone. I would suggest doing the entire tour, too. It is more expensive, but you get a lot for your buck. Plus, the airplane is really very cool.
They did a wonderful job of redeveloping the area around Graceland, as well as the actual presentation of Graceland itself. The audio presentation was done wonderfully and really engages you.
If you are there either in August or in January, you get to hit Graceland on Elvis's birthday or the anniversary of his death. Both will make Graceland much more crowded, but the experience is pretty different. There will be flower bouquets all around his grave from numerous countries and in every language imaginable. Plus, you may even be lucky enough to be part of the midnight vigil. Interesting, very interesting.
Go to Graceland; it is a can't-miss in American culture and a Memphis tradition. Have fun!
From journal Walking in Memphis
St. Louis, Missouri
January 7, 2005
We bought the combo ticket, so we had a tour of the mansion and admission to the car collection, museum, and jets. On the outside, the mansion didn't seem much larger than your average upscale suburban home. However, inside, the decorations were unbelievable. From the jungle room waterfall to the carpeted ceiling, it was incredible. The museums in the main visitors area (across the street from Graceland Mansion) leave something to be desired. Don't bother unless you are a true Elvis fan. Also, be sure to hit the free parking just north of the main entrance. It's actually closer to the entrance than Graceland's paid parking.
From journal Walkin' in Memphis with the Family
New York, New York
November 10, 2004
But I was not prepared for the emotional wallop a visit to his house actually packs to an attentive visitor. To say that knowing the basics of Elvis' life story adds to the experience is putting it lightly-I knew nothing other than he was skinny and rich, sang a few great songs, and then he got fat and killed himself, leaving poor Lisa Marie to marry Michael Jackson. Thankfully, my friend (and catalyst for the visit) Emma knows heaps about him, his career, and his family, so she told me bits throughout the weekend and while we were walking through the grounds. Hello--we were there for 4 hours!! We got on the bus that takes us over with these two very cute guys, but they immediately outpaced us and left us in the dust. Once they were gone, I was forced to really observe and think about Elvis' home since Emma spent minutes on the minutia, which left me with time to kill.
Anyway, back to the emotional wallop. Obviously the Presley estate presents a very one-sided account of his life through the excellent audio tour you all get; however, if you've half a brain and a grain of salt you can guess at what else was going on.
Yes, it was amazing to see the jungle room, to see his mirrored basement ceilings, and to see the seemingly miles of gold and platinum records and awards that fill rooms of his estate. And the planes and cars-give me one of them and I'll say goodnight. It was interesting to note that some of the pieces were hopelessly tacky, but others, like the 18-foot white couch, was surprisingly modern and worthy of imitation.
But, you can't deny the poignancy of Graceland. The sense of lost potential, of a greatness that would have continued unabated, is palpable. Lisa Marie's swing set, left where it was set up on the lawn, even after Elvis' separation from Priscilla, broke my heart to bits. The video of Elvis demonstrating karate-badly-also broke my heart. Did he really get his black belt, or was it awarded to his vanity?
I left Graceland with a greater appreciation for Elvis's life, his values (which seem to be very Southern and American values to me), and his music. You don't have to spend 4 hours there, but it's definitely one of those places you should see thoughtfully, not at a gallop and not with a snicker, before you die.
From journal This One's for Elvis
Bloomfield, New Jersey
October 28, 2004
The inside was fun - all decorated with the original furniture (I loved the white sofa in the front living room). The jungle room was hilarious and I took the most pictures in that room.
The tour is automated - you wear headphones and press the numbers that correlate to the particular exhibit you are watching. I liked that part - I was able to replay something if I wanted to hear the history again.
It was a bit pricey (we only did the house tour, but you can also see his cars and airplane for extra money), but is worth it if you are any kind of Elvis fan.
From journal Miserable in Memphis
April 25, 2004
From journal Tender Tennessee Christmas
by Shelly Matt
March 11, 2004
But seeing the mansion was well worth it.
From journal Elvis's Mansion