. . . made a date with Hillwood. Reservations are required at the former home of Marjorie Merriweather Post, but that little bit of planning more than pays off with a visit to the lavishly decorated mansion. Inside, an extravagant collection of Russian and French art fills the rooms. In warmer months, 13 acres of formal gardens add to the magic, but greenhouse-grown orchids keep the house in bloom all year.
As sumptuously as the house is decorated, thousands of items remain in storage.
Hillwood Museum & Gardens
4155 Linnean Ave. NW, Washington. Open 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m., Tuesdays through Saturdays. Closed in January. Admission $5-$10. A new exhibit, "The Myths of St. Petersburg," opens this week. For details, call 202-686-5807 or go to www.hillwoodmuseum.org.
Know of a uniquely Washington area experience or a place you always take out-of-towners? Send a note to firstname.lastname@example.org. For previous features, go to www.washingtonpost.com/haventlived