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The best public historic house to tour in the Finger Lakes

The Finger Lakes area has a history that goes back to colonial America. Thankfully several of the homes from days gone by still stand and many encourage visitors to step back in time and take a tour. Many of the homes while always grand in structure, have historical significance as well. Our innkeepers weigh in this week with their recommendations for the best public historic house to tour in the Finger Lakes.

Rose Hill Mansion

With it's beautifully restored mansion and scenic view of Seneca Lake, it's a wonderful way to spend a few hours. All of my guests who have visited Rose Hill have come back praising its beauty and marveling at how interesting their docents, knowledgeable in the history and restoration of the property, made their tour. If you go, be sure to ask your docent to show you the hidden pocket window shutters. They're quite unique. Located on Rt. 96A south of Geneva on Seneca Lake. ~ Glenda - Gentle Giants Bed and Breakfast

Located just a couple of miles outside of Geneva on the east side of Seneca Lake, is a stunning 1839 Greek Revival landmark. It houses one of the country's best collections of Empire style furniture in the twenty-one rooms that are open to the public. The admission charge is incredibly affordable, and I have found the volunteer docents to be very well versed. (Open daily from May through October.) ~ Donna Cunningham - Yale Manor B&B

It's interesting and fun to visit.  ~ Cristina & Fernando Diaz - The Farr Inn

Rose Hill Mansion, of course! No contest! ~ Shirley Camp - LaFayette Bed & Breakfast


Sonnenberg Mansion and Gardens

It's a beautiful place to visit. Not only is it interesting to see what a summer home looked like so many years ago, but the gardens are refreshing. A nice way to spend a sunny, warm afternoon. Located in Canandaigua at the North end of Canandaigua Lake. ~ Sheryl Mordini - The Acorn Inn B&B

The Sonnenberg Mansion has to be one of the most unique homes in the area and will be opens for the season in May.  The unique design of this historic home together with the contribution the family has made to our area makes it worth a visit. ~ Jack and Donna - Bed and Breakfast at Oliver Phelps

The William Seward House in Auburn is an excellent historic home to tour. My guests came back and said they was much more to the home and its history than they'd expected to find. Located at the Northern end of Owasco Lake. ~ Judy Austic - Barrister's Bed and Breakfast

Elizabeth Cady Stanton House in Seneca Falls. As part of the Women's Rights National Historic Park, the home is open to the public 9 - 5 daily, and guided tours are available. Stanton is one of the most important figures in the women' rights movement. The Stantons lived in the Seneca Falls home beginning in 1847. Located at the Northwest end of Cayuga Lake. ~ Barbara Schiesser - Sunrise Landing Bed and Breakfast

Granger Homestead and Carriage Museum - This large Federal style house has an interesting history and is also home to a carriage museum displaying over 50 examples of 19th century vehicles. The home is both impressive and picturesque. If you feel confined on the magnificent property you can even arrange for a horse and carriage tour of the historic district of Canandaigua. Located at the Northern end of Canandaigua Lake. ~ Steve and Kathy Wirt - Wine Country Cabins Bed and Breakfast

Oliver House Museum - Home to the Yates County Genealogical and the Historical Society at 200 Main Street Penn Yan right in the center of the historical district.   It is open year round Monday - Friday from 9:30 until 4:30 PM.   Saturdays by appointment. Located at the Northeastern tip of Keuka Lake. ~ Al and Nancy - Gorham House Bed & Breakfast


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