Historic Details of the Hospitality Suites
It’s that time of year when we begin to transition to Mansion Season! The estate is perfect for cozy winter gatherings, including weddings, holiday parties, or milestone celebrations. Many are familiar with our main floor space, which features our Great Room, Dining Room, Glass Conservatory, Parlor, and Library, but we also have three hospitality suites on our second floor.
Built in 1902, these three suites are original to Willowdale Estate. You can find details like a masonry fireplace, carved alcove sitting area, and beamed ceilings.
“Before the forest you see around you grew, Bradley Palmer’s master suite would have had a sweeping view of the surrounding farms and the gently sloping hills surrounding Willowdale and the Ipswich River. The room itself was designed for maximum comfort with a double-sided fireplace and means of ventilation. The bathroom would have originally held a shower made out of a single block of marble.”
“At the height of its operation, Willowdale employed at forty staff members who worked in thirty buildings whose remains are spread about what is now Bradley Palmer State Park. Many of these employees lived on the property either in the South Wing or in separate buildings. In Palmer’s final years, his niece Elizabeth V. Foster, lived at Willowdale, either in this room or one of the many other guest rooms throughout the mansion.”
“Many local legends have emerged about Willowdale and Bradley Palmer, particularly about his famous guests. While most of these myths have little historical basis, Palmer was known to host many of Boston’s and the North Shore’s social elite for dinners, parties, horse races, and simply to stay as guests. Via the stairway in the hall, servants would have had easy access to guest’s rooms to wait on them during their visits.”
Present day, these suites are used for getting ready space, breakout sessions, a green room for speakers, or private meetings. These suites, and the whole estate, offer plenty of space with a variety of locations to meet all your needs for any event.