Brucemore Receives National Vote

Top 10 Holiday Home Tours

December 13th, 2019

121217_Brucemore-076_reduced.jpgBrucemore, Iowa’s only National Trust Historic Site, has been recognized as one of the top 10 “Best Holiday Historic Home Tours” across the country in USA Today’s 10Best Readers’ Choice Awards. This recognition follows Brucemore having been handpicked by the 10Best local experts as one of the top 20 historic houses and online voting throughout the month of November.

“Being recognized as one of the top historic holiday home tours is an incredible honor,” said Director of Community Engagement Tara Richards. “We were competing against other magnificent sites across the country. We are extremely grateful to be part of a community that supports and participates in our mission.”

Annually, Brucemore provides the opportunity for visitors to celebrate the season beginning the day after Thanksgiving through New Year’s Eve through special seasonal programming. This year, visitors can enjoy the seasonal splendor of all four floors of the 1880s mansion, including 13 glowing trees, a dining room set for Christmas dinner, the lush garland adornment of the grand staircase, and other holiday cheer. Special artifacts from Brucemore’s collection are on display to help bring the story of Christmas in the early 1900s to life.

Visit our calendar of events to view options to visit and purchase tickets this holiday season. 

  • Holiday Mansion Tours are offered Wednesday through Saturday beginning at 10:00 a.m. with the last tour at 3:20 p.m. Admission is $12 per adult and $5 per student (ages 6 – 18). Each tour is limited to 16 people.
  • Music in the Mansion Holiday Tours feature live music on the newly restored 1929 Skinner Player Pipe Organ. This special season opportunity will be offered Thursdays—December 19 and 26 at 5:30 p.m.— and Sunday afternoons—December 22 and 29—between 12:00 and 3:20 p.m. Admission is $15 per adult and $10 per student (ages 6 – 18) in advance. 

Brucemore is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays, as well as Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Discounts are available to Brucemore members. Visit www.brucemore.org or call (319) 362-7375 to purchase tickets or for more information on scheduled tour times.

The holiday season at Brucemore is sponsored by Pearson with Cedar Memorial Funeral Home as the décor sponsor and KCRG-TV9 as the media sponsor.

General

Do I need to pay to enter the estate and walk on the grounds?

No. Visiting the Brucemore estate during grounds hours is free. Tickets are only required for scheduled tours and events, and they can be purchased in advance online.

Is a reservation needed to visit Brucemore?

You do not need a reservation to visit the grounds on your own. You do need a ticket to go inside the mansion. We recommend advance reservations for any of our mansion tours or other scheduled special themed tours due to limited capacity. Please visit our calendar to see upcoming opportunities and to purchase your tickets.

Touring the Mansion

Can I take pictures inside the mansion?

Yes. Photography is allowed during tours for personal, non-professional use. Tripods, selfie-sticks, or other photography equipment will not be permitted. Photographs should not distract from others’ enjoyment.

How large is the mansion?

Brucemore is approximately 15,000 square feet.

How many fireplaces, rooms, and floors does Brucemore have?

There are 21 “main” rooms, 14 fireplaces and four floors plus an attic.

Is all of the furniture original to the house and families?

Much of the furniture you will see on display belonged to the second or third families to live at Brucemore; however, some pieces had to be replaced with replicas or similar antiques.

Is the mansion handicap accessible?

The Brucemore mansion includes multiple floors and several staircases. Because of the historic architecture, some spaces are not accessible. Due to preservation work, the wheelchair lift that offers accessibility to the first floor is not available at this time. An elevator is not available from the first floor to the other floors at any time. Learn more about accessibility at Brucemore.

Group and School Tours

Is there an age requirement for students visiting Brucemore?

You do not have to be a certain age to visit or attend a program at Brucemore. Different programs are best suited for different ages. Tours of the mansion are recommended for 4th grade and older due to the concepts and historic collection.

Where do we park?

Parking is available on site a short walk from the mansion or carriage house. Buses must follow special instructions. Large events may not be able to accommodate on-site parking; please see the event calendar information for exceptions.

Is bus parking available?

Yes. Bus parking is available near the carriage house. Buses must arrive via special directions as they are unable to fit in our historic gates.

Is there a lunch area at Brucemore?

There is not a designated area indoors or outdoors to eat; however, you are welcome to bring your own blanket or chair to picnic on the grounds. Please carry out any trash to help our small staff keep the grounds beautiful.

Does my group have to arrive together?

Please let group members or chaperones know where they can meet the group.

What is your payment policy?

Brucemore admission is to be paid prior to the visit and a deposit may be required. Payment can be made by cash, check, or credit card and should be paid in one sum.

Do I need to make an appointment to tour the mansion?

You must have a ticket to a tour or program inside the mansion. Many tours do sell out in advance; purchase online or by calling 319-362-7375 in advance of your visit to guarantee your spot. See the schedule here.

Is the mansion wheelchair accessible?

The mansion is not currently accessible to wheelchairs due to preservation work. The mansion includes multiple flights of stairs. Most of the outdoor areas of the site are accessible. See our full accessibility information and contact us with additional questions regarding your visit.

Can I walk on the property?

Yes, the grounds and gardens are open daily most of the year. Several self-guided interpretive panels and tours via QR codes are available. See hours here.

What is Brucemore’s ticket policy?

Tickets are non-refundable, but may be rescheduled for comparable programs as space allows. Learn more.

I’m attending a large event at Brucemore. Where do I park?

Large events may require you to park offsite. Please read the event details on the calendar for specific information for each event.