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Bellingrath Gardens Is Well Worth the Trip

by S. Lynne on July 26th, 2013

Something’s in bloom year-round at Bellingrath Gardens and Home. The former country estate of Mobile Coca-Cola bottler Walter Bellingrath and his wife, Bessie, the 65-acre property in Theodore, Alabama, makes a great day’s outing away from the beach.

Attractions include an award-winning rose garden, the Bayou Boardwalk, Mirror Lake, the Great Lawn, the Asian-American gardens, the Fountain Plaza, the terraces, the Grotto/Riverfront, the Rockery, and the Butterfly Garden. Depending on the season, visitors enjoy dramatic displays of azaleas, hydrangeas, camellias, daffodils, roses, chrysanthemums, poinsettias, and other lush plantings.

Also open for tours is the 10,500-square-foot English Renaissance-style mansion built for the Bellingraths in 1935, three years after the gardens first opened to the public. The entire property was inspired by European estates visited by the couple on trips abroad. House and gardens were designed by well-known Mobile architect George B. Rogers.

The house, still lavishly furnished with the Bellingraths’ belongings, includes an “ultra-modern” bathroom, circa 1935, and the original kitchen appliances. The adjoining guesthouse and garage, added to the property in 1939, now hold an impressive collection of Boehm porcelain.

Guests can also lunch in the on-site Magnolia Restaurant and browse for souvenirs in the well-stocked gift shop

Bellingrath Gardens is 20 miles southwest of Mobile and about 1 1/2 hours’ drive from Gulf Shores. For ticket prices and more information, call 251-973-2217 or visit www.bellingrath.org or www.facebook.com/bellingrath.

For places to stay in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, plus restaurants and other things to do, just click on our links to Gulf Shores vacation rentals, Orange Beach vacation rentals, Gulf Shores restaurants, Orange Beach restaurants, Gulf Shores recreation, and Orange Beach recreation

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