Some major houses and estates have names, of course. (Versailles, Monticello and Tara come to mind. Ha!)
But the house where I'm currently working is simply referred to as "The Residence". And as the Butler/House Manager here, it's quite a residence indeed, if I do say so myself!
A magnificent, three-story, Italian Renaissance-style Pallazo! Massive stone steps that lead up to the two fourteen-foot front doors, which open into a spacious, domed Entry Hall. The Dining Room is to the right, with a massive chandelier and a table that seats twenty. (It can be extended to seat thirty!)
To the left is the Library, with floor-to-ceiling shelves filled with books that are actually read!
Directly ahead of the Entry Hall is a large Reception Room with a full bar. (This is where everyone gathers, of course -- close to the Gin. Ha!)
There's an enormous formal Living Room, filled with museum-quality furnishings and a Bosendorfer Grand Piano. A less-formal Family Room just to the right. And there are three breath-taking porticos on the back side of the Residence that open upon the formal gardens.
The kitchen is cavernous to handle large parties, and there's a comfortable Breakfast Nook to the side. The Pantry is the size of a small studio apartment, and there's also a Silver Closet (aka Butler's Closet, ha!), filled with exquisite Lenox and English Spode china. There's of course silver serving vessels, platters, and the hallmarked sterling flatware (service for fifty!)
The ceilings are eighteen feet high, with all the doors and doorways being fourteen feet. There are marble, parquet, and inlaid wood-and-marble floors throughout, with fine Orientals (500 knots per square inch and up), as well as some tapestry-style rugs.
Each room, including the Dining Room, is complete with fireplace and French windows, with exquisite drapes that drop their tassels all the way to the floor. Furnishings throughout are scattered with three-and-four-hundred-year-old antiques, which are put to use, not just for show!
Somehow, throughout all this opulence, the rooms appear warm and inviting. Perhaps it's the scented candles and fresh flowers in all the rooms. An open magazine on the Living Room coffee table.* Maybe its the mink throws that are never too carefully folded. But the rooms are compelling, and you want to be there. (Something that can't be said for a lot of rich-but-stuffy houses, where you don't even want to sit down! Ha!)
On the Second floor, there's the Master Bedroom with balcony, the Mister's Bathroom and Dressing Room, the Mrs' Bathroom and Dressing Room (hers looks like a Neiman Marcus showroom!), an Office/Study for the Mr, an Office/Study for the Mrs, and five Guest Rooms--each with its own marble-tub bathroom!
On the Third Floor there are the attics and two additional Guest Rooms (for a total of seven), with a connecting marble bath.
Mercifully for the staff (well, the Guests, too) there's an elevator. Ha!
But do bear in mind that everything I've mentioned above must be cared for in some way. Which is where my job comes in. It's a great deal of work, with a lot of attention required. And at the end of the day, we are all exhausted! (There are motels in this world with less square footage!)
I'm sorry this post is so long, but it takes a lot of words to describe a 22,000 square/foot house. Ha!
Thanks for reading.
* And by the way, the only drinking vessels I ever see on this "coffee" table are empty martini glasses. lol!