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Olana State Historic Site

Hudson, NY

(518) 828-0135

Closed now
5720 NY-9G Hudson, NY, 12534
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  • margaret keenan 1 day ago

    4 stars! Because the house was gorgeous, but my tour guide was slightly aggressive. She had an outburst of a response when someone in the group asked a question. It made everyone very uncomfortable. Other than that, it was very enjoyable.

  • Sienna Reid 15 days ago

    Olana is a world of its own, high on a forest surrounded hill, a stunning representation of Middle Eastern influenced Victorian architecture. There are meandering walks to take around the estate to take in evocative views of the Hudson River Valley. Olana is a short drive from Hudson, NY and I recommend it to all my Airbnb guests at Palazzo Hudson. I was greatly influenced by Olana and Frederic Church’s color palette when I painted my vacation rental. The colors evoke the ever changing and always beautiful colors of the Valley and show the influence of the artist’s eye.

  • Will Juntunen 39 days ago

    I love Olana. I see little need to return to tour the house. The grounds and view make up enough of an attraction for me to return. As for the house, we might want to recall that Frederic Church belonged to a school of visual artists. The tour that lasts an hour progresses as a verbal, language bound experience. Let's leave room for musing in the museum. Education has moved toward the idea of the flip lesson. Lectures can be posted on YouTube or Vimeo. Feng Shui might be best experienced in terms of quiet, silence contemplation. Church left clues in his interiors and his views that might be Zen koans for contemplation. We only get fifty minutes inside, maybe for a lifetime. People with fear of enclosed spaces or crowding might have difficulty with the tour. Doors before and behind are mandatorily closed. While one listens to the tour, one must constantly worry of committing a gaff, stepping too soon into an adjacent room or standing too close to a purple velvet rope. The voice that seeks to educate you also seeks to regulate and maybe that's too much for those who have graduated from grammar school. Thomas Cole tour guides allowed lingering in rooms for a moment after one departs, especially to take a picture. Cedar Grove is interpreted by volunteer fellows pursuing advanced degrees in art history. I passed a happy hour sitting on a bench at Cedar Grove watching light play on the Catskills, invited to linger by a fellow. I'll sit on that bench again. The Eastman Museum in Rochester even has a sitting room where one can enjoy the house for being a house, a place of rest. I passed two happy hours reading Rod Serling scripts, his copies, in the Rod Serling museum of Binghamton. In the History Collection of New Orleans, a kind clerk shared with me file folder after file folder of Tennessee Williams correspondence. I'm not sure a tour where a guide criticizes a group with professional cameras for taking too many pictures has much place in the growing world of cultural tourism. We were instructed, "The thing is to follow the guided tour", a faithful paraphrase. Is It? We come with our own reasons to pay homage to Church. Even the idea that one must protect period furnishings and paintings lacks weight. Perhaps reproductions will do. So many paintings are due for the once a century restoration. Sigh .... there's a reason some folks will do anything to avoid a historical house tour. Sincerely, this space just begs to be a place to paint or dine. It's a house. Live in it. On the grounds, I see ideas for what the house might become. Children have to be coaxed away by the parents after walking through Jesus Soto's interactive sculpture, #Penetrable. A photographer has set up several cameras on the lawn because his friend is arriving soon to propose marriage to an unsuspecting woman. A parade of adults just balanced and walked on the stone retaining wall. Let's create creativity inside.

  • Justin Roscoe 60 days ago

    Didn't have a chance take a tour but stopped for a quick look at some 5-Star views of the Hudson Valley and the Catskills.

  • Bob Ricketson 77 days ago

    Olana sits upon a hill that overlooks the Hudson Valley and gives a dramatic view of the Catskill mountains. Plenty of places for a nice picnic lunch. Carriage trails to explore.

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