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The concept to build an estate started in 1886 with George Vanderbilt acquiring 125,000 acres of land. He commenced construction of the HOME in 1889 and it took 6 years to complete, opening in 1895. It has 250 rooms, with 34 bedrooms, 43 baths, 65 fireplaces. About 90 rooms are open to view today, along with the grounds. They procured many items from Europe in the gilded age/
The estate was going into decline in early 1920's and not renovated to a peak shape until 1960's by Mr Cecil, a son of the daughter of George. What remains is 8,000 acres and the facility employs 1,000 people. The gardens are as impressive as the inside rooms. My opinion is this is #1 or #2 of the best estates in the US.
Updated Mar 26, 2009