Lovely Longwood Gardens and Philly…

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Moussa and I took a spontaneous road trip last weekend to Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania, a place people had recommend to us, but a place we didnt really know anything about. After a leisurely drive (about 1 hr 45 minutes total) we were shocked when we came in contact with the gardens, which consist of over 1,077 acres of land, including gardens (both indoor and out), woodlands, a manicured traditional French garden, tree houses (yes, you can climb them) and meadows. Seeing this all in person was like nothing I could have imagined & I’d recommend it to all, as its quite possibly one of the most beautiful gardens in the world…There is also a lovely cafe where we had lunch overlooking the meadows, a wing of the conservatory dedicated to children called the Children’s Gardens, a fine dining option, and a ballroom. The history of the gardens and land, created by Pierre S. du Pont, is also a very interesting story, and would highly recommend reading up on it if interested. Now for some photos of the gardens!

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I’m guessing the gardeners leave a pool of water under the trees to keep them hydrated yet it also creates a lovely reflective pool which goes beautifully with the neoclassical frame and columns. This space reminds me of the gardens in the Frick Museum in NYC, must-go-back-soon!

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These types of flower beds went on for miles (or acres at least…) with hundreds of different types of radiant beauties, like above. I actually read that Longwood has over 11,000 different types of plants on it’s property, researched and sought out from all over the world.
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Awww, i just love these air plants! Some of you may know that instead of buying these guys (now quite the urban zen trend) at West Elm or similar, I brought a bag full of them back from Florida that I plucked off the palm trees (not sure the rules/laws/etiquette on this one) yet they didnt last too long up in nyc…

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 Orchid season just started at the gardens!!! Arent they amazing?

7dayobsession_blog_sarah elizabeth 17There were more orchids then i could count in a day…All vivid, radiant and thriving in the conservatory.

7dayobsession_blog_sarah elizabeth 16One of my favorite things about the conservatory is that they didnt neglect to use the air space, and hung large planters filled with bright colored flowers throughout the spaces. Can you see some of them up there?

7dayobsession_blog_sarah elizabeth 16Moussa in one of my favorite areas of the conservatory, on the West wing. Was so nice to see him snapping photos and enjoying the gardens as much as I was (it was his great idea to make the trek after all… : )

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Love the glass container the orchids were placed in with the sticks wrapping around the inside of the glass. I’ve got to try this at home, makes the vases look sooo chic!

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Another view of the West wing of the conservatory.

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Id be happy walking along these dreamy brick paths all day…

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7dayobsession_blog_sarah elizabeth 6I’d never seen such radiant, happy Lilly’s before…The beauty and magic of nature is so apparent here.

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Someone being silly, yet i couldn’t help but be fascinated by how tiny Moussa looks here (he’s 6′-1″ i think), which means these trees and roots are just massive…

7dayobsession_blog_sarah elizabeth 4More magnificent orchids…

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After we left the garden we headed East to Philadelphia, PA (where I had never been before!) to have a late lunch with my dear friend Katie, who relocated to Philly from NYC a few years back. As we got off the freeway & entered the city, we were instantly immersed in the abundant colonial architecture which i was not familiar with: brick row houses on cozy narrow streets, colorfully painted doors, and an overall European feel. Katie suggested we meet at Parc Restaurant along Rittenhouse Square, which was so lovely & yummy (think of Balzathar in NYC, but with a lot more leg room! : ). After our fabulous (and delicious!) French meal, we were taken on an unforgettable tour of Center City and the surrounding neighborhoods by Katie, walking along tiny cobble streets, through meandering alleyways (like in Pari!) dotted with charming row houses, and the still-lit neighborhood coffee shops which mixed in seamlessly in the residential neighborhoods. Some of these row houses had their curtains open to reveal museum-like period interiors equipped with an original fireplace, with a mantel displaying an oil painting of a distant relative, and a few armchairs near by, all lit by a crystal chandelier which hanging perfectly in the center of the room.

Can you tell i kinda liked Philly? : ) I’d truly love to hear your thoughts, memories or stories of times spent in Philly, so please do share!

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7dayobsesssion_sarah Elizabeth_blog 1Katie and I happy to have our reunion after months of non-travel due to the longgggg winter.

7dayobsession_blog_sarah Elizabeth 2Katie took a lovely photo of Moussa and I. Huge thank you to Moussa for planning our spontaneous day trip, and treating us to a delicious French meal!

04092010164148_lg_Parc-Restaurant-009.jpgAbove photo of Parc Restaurant via Domusinc.com. All other photos taken by moi.