Boston: Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum

Updated: May 1, 2019

I have been to Boston many times, usually for a purpose other than sightseeing. So for my most recent trip I wanted to do something that I have never done before, and hopefully that something would be very out of the ordinary.

I looked up "weird things to do in Boston", and there really are a lot of weird things to do in Boston. Two things on the list peaked my interest-mostly because they were close to where I was staying. The Scarlet O'Hara House, a re-creation of the southern homestead painted on a concrete wall at the end of a ally just sounded downright funny, and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum seemed a good way to spend a few hours on a beautiful day.

Not far from the Museum of Fine Art, and surrounded by the Northeastern University campus, the s out in a block of granite and concrete. Built between 1898 and 1909 the Isabella Stewart Gardener Museum is a large Italian villa that stand1, The museum houses over 7500 paintings, 1500 rare books and 7000 archeological artefacts, all bought, collected and curated by Isabella over the course of her life.

The museum played host to special events of the day including concerts, readings and society happenings. Isabella also was a great patron of the arts, and John Singer Sargent was an artist in residence for quite some time. There are many Sargent's in the museum, including one of Isabella, herself.

In March 1990, two men dressed as police officers entered the building and walked out with 13 works of art by artists such as Rembrandt, Vermeer, Manet and Degas, and worth over 500 million dollars. Empty frames still grace the walls of the museum, where paintings of unimaginable beauty used to hang. The crime has never been solved and a 10 million dollar reward for information stands on offer still today.

#boston #bostonsights #usatravel #museums #isabellagardnerstewart

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Fearing the empty nest? Don't! Since my children have flown the coup, I have had time to refocus on my passions of travel, art, and writing.  This little blog is a handy tool that helps me share what I have learned with others.


I grew up in the States, but have lived a large chunk of my adult life in the UK. I now split my time between London and South Africa as well as chasing the sun around the world. 


 When my nest emptied, I began to plan my trips according to my own schedule, indulging in going solo. Once one gets used to traveling solo, it can be a very freeing experience. I seek out interesting, informative and unique experiences, and proffer advice with my network of readers.  I also have a lot of fun!


 Spa retreats and personal growth travel are core to what I do.  If there was a master's degree in the art of booking massages, I would be a scholarship student! I also plan to conquer Europe one city break at a time and with all that effort, I need as many beach holidays as possible. 


So please enjoy reading my tales of travel. I hope you are encouraged to get on that plane and perhaps have a few giggles along the way.


When my large family was quite young, we lived in several international postings. In an age before Google Translate,  I negotiated the grocery stores of foreign countries in search of tasty ingredients. I soon became an expert at discerning information from food labels and also learned to cook healthy, quick meals from local sources. 


From this experience, I became quite the foodie, even before 'foodie' was a word. And now as an empty-nester and devotee of food travel networks, I  interpret those old recipes into smaller, even tastier versions. 


Being an editor and food/wine travel columnist,  I travel the world sampling indigenous recipes which I share on Old Bag on a Plane. I also love wine!


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