Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Travel: The Italian Ca' d'Zan Mansion in Sarasota, Florida

While browsing through wedding magazines on the job at the office yesterday afternoon, I came across an article on places to visit around the world for new couples - and behold, the Ringlings' Ca' d'Zan Mansion in Sarasota, Florida.

Does that name sound familiar? It should, because I'm quite positive you've heard of the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. John and Mable Ringling have established quite the spread for those after them to enjoy and learn from. Currently Florida State University holds responsibility for the property. I had no idea this place existed and I'm so excited to hopefully visit soon!

One of the last Gilded Aged mansions of its kind built in America for 1.5 million during 1925, the Ca' d'Zan Mansion (meaning House of John in Venetian) has 15 bathrooms and 56 rooms of which some view out to the Sarasota Bay. Each romantic Italian room with Venetian Gothic architecture unique to itself contains original furnishings and artwork. At 36,000 sq ft the mansion sits on 20 acres of land is five stories high made from terra cotta blocks, concrete and brick, with glazed tiles covering parts of the exterior. Imported by the builder, Owen Burns, the Spanish tiled roof of the mansion dates back to the 16th century. To view a virtual tour of the mansion, click here.

The grounds are absolutely stunning. There is more than just the mansion that sits on the property. There is the Treviso Restaurant and Banyan Cafe, and a complimentary tram service so that you don't have to walk from venue to venue. Here are a few must-sees:

The property welcomes the public and even holds an events such as Art After 5: Cocktails and Observations every Thursday from 5-8PM and Monday Night Movies at the historic Asolo Theater at 7PM.

Another fantastic thing I love is that anyone is welcome to bring their sketch books and pencils anywhere on the grounds to soak up their art history inspiration.

...I haven't forgotten, for all of you who haven't decided where your wedding venue will be, this is a very good option! From the mansion and bayfront to the museum of art courtyard, you can pretty much book any day of the year. For more information on wedding planning options click here.

To read more about the visit John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art.

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