Over the next few months, architecture and design aficionados in the Washington region can choose from hundreds of stately homes, lush yards and embassies to admire as the annual spring house and garden tours begin.
In April, May and June, more than a dozen tours will be offered — from 250 homes, gardens and historic sites in Virginia to more than 70 embassies in Washington and 44 historic mansions in Maryland.
Here is a list of the tours:
• 2015 DC Design House, 956 Mackall Farm Lane, McLean, Va., April 12 to May 10. Enjoy the work of 24 design firms throughout this new 8,869-square-foot estate. Open weekends noon to 5 p.m.; Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; and Thursday evenings 5 to 8 p.m.; closed Mondays. Tickets are $30 ($50 for the preview on April 11) and available at www.dcdesignhouse.com and at the door.
• Historic Garden Week, April 18 to 25. This beauteous event will include 31 tours organized and hosted by the Garden Club of Virginia throughout the Commonwealth. Almost 250 private homes, gardens and historical sites, including many in Northern Virginia, will welcome visitors. Tickets, which average $30 per tour and $175 for statewide passes, are available at www.vagardenweek.org .
• Georgetown House Tour, April 25 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. This self-guided tour, one of the nation’s oldest at 84 years old — will feature eight homes in Georgetown. Advance tickets cost $50, which includes a tea from 2 to 5 p.m. in Blake Hall of St. John’s Episcopal Church, 3240 O St. NW, Washington. Tickets cost $55 the day of the tour. Go to www.georgetownhousetour.com for more information.
• 2015 Flower Mart Celebrating Asia, Washington National Cathedral, 3101 Wisconsin Ave. NW, Washington, May 1, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and May 2, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. This free outdoor festival includes the 10th Annual International Floral Exhibit; sales of annuals, perennials and herbs; shopping at more than 80 artisanal gift booths; and children’s rides. For more details, go to www.allhallowsguild.org .
• Around the World Embassy Tour, Northwest Washington, May 2 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Step inside more than 50 embassies and get a taste of new foods, fashions, music and dance. Admission is free, but photo identification may be required. Find a list of participating properties at www.culturaltourismdc.org .
• Maryland House & Garden Pilgrimage, May 3 to May 30. The tour over five weekends includes 44 private homes, gardens, a winery and even a Federal-style house in an 18th-century shipyard. Among the highlights are Sotterley Plantation, a National Historic Landmark; Pleasant Hill Farm, with century-old English boxwoods; and the Choptank River Lighthouse, a replica of a screw-pile lighthouse. Tickets cost $30 in advance at www.mhgp.org or $35 the day of the tour.
• Takoma Park House and Garden Tour, May 3 from 1 to 5 p.m. To honor the 125th anniversary of the incorporation of Takoma Park, Md., organizers selected 12 Victorian, Second Empire and Queen Anne homes that were standing in 1890 for the tour. Tickets may be purchased in advance for $18 at www.historictakoma.org or for $20 the day of the tour at the Cady-Lee Mansion, 7064 Eastern Ave. NW, Washington,
• Shortcut to Europe: European Union Embassies Open House, Northwest Washington, May 9 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Visit 28 European Union member states’ embassies and the European Union delegation to the United States. Enjoy the authentic sights, sounds and scents of France, Italy, Croatia, Malta and many other countries. Admission is free, but photo identification may be required. For more details, go to www.euopenhouse.org .
• Georgetown Garden Tour, May 9 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Peek into eight private gardens, ranging from intimate to grand, in historic Georgetown. Tickets are $30 before April 30 and $35 after May 1 at www.georgetowngardentour.com . They can be purchased the day of the event at Keith Hall, Christ Church, 3116 O St. NW in Washington, where the tour begins and where tea will be served from 2 to 4 p.m.
• Capitol Hill House & Garden Tour, May 9 from 4 to 7 p.m. and May 10 from noon to 5 p.m. Hosted by the Capitol Hill Restoration Society, this annual Mother’s Day weekend tour will feature a dozen homes around Stanton Park. Tickets cost$35 in advance after April 24 at www.chrs.org and $40 the day of the tour.
• Tuckahoe Elementary Home and Garden Tour, May 16 from noon to 5 p.m. in Arlington. Eight homes and two gardens will be featured. Tickets cost $25 in advance and $30 the day of the tour at tuckahoetour.org .
• Beyond the Garden Gates Garden Tour, Frederick, Md., May 16 and 17, 1 to 5 p.m. Enjoy nine whimsical and enchanting gardens tucked behind private garden gates in historic Frederick. Tickets cost $20 in advance at www.celebratefrederick.com and $25 the day of the tour.
• Historic Hyattsville House Tour, May 17 from 1 to 5 p.m. Historic Ash Hill is among 10 houses that will be featured this year. As of April 1, advance tickets will be available at Franklins restaurant, 5121 Baltimore Ave., and at the Hyattsville Municipal Building, 4310 Gallatin St., for $10. Day-of tickets will cost $15 at the City Municipal Building, which is also the starting point of the tour. For more details, go to www.preservehyattsville.org/tours .
• Secret Garden Tour, Annapolis, June 6 and 7, noon to 5 p.m. The Hammond-Harwood House Museum’s annual tour will include at least 10 private gardens in downtown Annapolis. Enjoy this rare opportunity to visit some of the area’s most beautiful hidden gardens. Tickets, at $40 for nonmembers and $35 for members, will be available after April 20 at www.hammondharwoodhouse.org/event/secret-garden-tour/ .
Trish Donnally is freelance writer.