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Wednesday, November 30, 2011


 re-post from 2009

A single fig vine (Ficus pumila) planted in the mid 1860s now covers all the interior walls and beams of the structure.

What is an Orangery ?
"The fundamental difference between an Orangery and a Conservatory is its structure, a conservatory is generally regarded as a temporary non-integral part of the property.
An orangery, with its greater mass of columns, pilasters and classic details creates a striking visual impact and contributes to the overall appeal of your home with a robust and permanent presence.
In the 18th century at the height of their popularity, orangeries were mainly used for the cultivation and preservation of exotic or delicate plants. Nowadays, with the availability of modern materials they are once more gaining popularity and creating wonderful family rooms for use as studies, dining rooms, sitting rooms and play rooms to name but a few.
The possibilities are only limited by the imagination"

The first Orangeries were created in Italy in the 15th. century. They were created to protect much prized citrus trees.
During the winter months, before there were stoves to warm the Orangeries, open fires were lit.

"Orangeries often featured large columns made from stone, and a solid back wall. The front and sides had a huge glass double door more often than not with a semi circular window above. The rest would have been made up of floor to ceiling windows, in keeping with the original architecture. Internally there were plastered walls, cornices and pilasters. During the summer months whilst the plants were enjoying the warmer weather the orangery would be used for entertaining and summer balls. But during the winter this is when the Orangeries were used as they were intended, for the protection of all those delicate varieties of plants that would mainly be Orange trees, this is why the term Orangeries came into being"

I think this room is so very beautiful, I can see myself in most of these spaces.
How about you ?
How wonderful this would be with a view of the ocean, or mountains and a huge lake !?

This looks like me. A space I would live in , cook in, hold court in with my nearest and dearest loved ones. Certainly, if I walked into a house that was for sale , and this was part of the kitchen...I would want to buy it.
What a great idea to have an Orangery almost any room
Right ?

"The definition an orangery has become blurred in recent times. Traditionally orangeries were constructed for the growth and cultivation of exotic plants and fruits. They were extravagant buildings with large windows and doors set between brick piers. The roofs were made from glass set on cast iron rafters and large cast box gutters to create areas of flat roof. The entire roof area was then surrounded by a parapet wall and the exterior walls were embellished with large stone columns and pilasters"
A Classic.

Would you like a room like this one ?

I am crazy for this! 

This is charming. 
The power of design is this...You could add a room like this to any home, and create charm if your home doesn't have any.
Orangeries, Palm Beach, Interior Design

Renee Finberg 'TELLS ALL' in her BLOG.....


  1. Oh Renee these are just fabulous structures! And thanks for the 'lesson'. My friend in the next street has the most wonderful old stone Edwardian Villa with a true to type Orangerie built at the rear of the house. The property is called L'Orangerie & the name is perfect!
    Millie ^_^

  2. yeap i'm drooling over here, great pics! but you always find the best pics ever thats the reason of me "following" you, great taste and style, maybe i'll learn something from you,lol...
    still working on the basement i call around to get the mirrors like you suggested and cant do it too much $$$$ so change of plans...
    have a great long weekend and have fun!!!..

  3. Sooo Beautiful...but unfortunately impracticle here. Even little tiny sunroofs melt the plastic parts in the summer here. A room with a roof like that would cook us I'm afraid. But in the winter...ooooh la la!

  4. OMyyyyyyyyyyyyy! GORGEOUS!!! I want one!
    There used to be a FAB French restaurant in L.A. called L'Orangerie... looked like one of your photos... sadly it is gone... your post reminded moi... and I never got around to eating there... le sigh!
    Bon week-end mon amie!

  5. these pictures are GORGEOUS!!! I'd love to have any one of those orangeries!! And thanks for the lesson - now I have a new word for my design vocab!!!

  6. I think I need one of these! We could use it here in the midwest most of the year!
    Thanks Renee!!

  7. Renee!

    Sooo beuteeeeful AND I learned something new! I want one ore two...the openness it creates is fab!


  8. La Maison Fou,

    wouldn't it be great ?
    i would love one too.

  9. fifi,
    i remember it ( if it was there back in the late 70's early 80's),
    and i did eat there with an old beau.
    and he is really an old beau by now!! LOL

  10. Terrific pictures. They are so classic and beautiful. That vine in the first pic is unbelievable.

  11. Wow, these sunrooms are fabulous!!

    I wrote a post about sunrooms a few weeks ago, and only had one of the pictures that you have. So you've introduced me to more wonderful sunrooms, which I'm definitely hooked on!! If you'd like to check out the pictures of sunrooms that I found, you can see them here:

    Have a great long weekend :-)

    Kelly @ DesignTies

  12. I love the more classic orangeries - especially in the old English country homes. Great post and history lesson. Enjoy your long weekend Renee, xv.

  13. Anonymous07:46

    Wow! the Secret Garden I love the glass roof!

  14. What a beautiful post. I have always been attracted to orangeries and am delighted when I find a restaurant in a restored one.

  15. I would kill for the space to have one. kill. watch out people.

  16. I cut ads out of my British magazines for these rooms all the time! One is definitely on my to-do list. The best I've ever been in was at Culzean Castle in Scotland. To absolutely die for.

  17. I have had a conservatory on my fantasy house list ever since I had a fantasy house list!!! The images are just beautiful, my favorite is the one on the back of the stone house.

    Thanks for explaining all the differences, this was such a great post!

  18. I never knew the differences between the orangeries and conservatories. I see so many conservatories while walking about Aberdeen. Some are just stunning in their architecture. I've not yet heard anyone refer to them as orangeries there but I'd say they are more that than a conservatory. Thanks for expanding my IQ and seriously, how'd you know I have a drool bucket?


  19. deb....
    xxxxxxxxx's back to you.

    yes in that part of the world conservatories and orangeries are a very important part of a home life.
    especially when you can pull it off money wise.
    i am sure most would have them if they could.

    keep me posted on your adventures


  20. Acanthus and Acorn
    Acanthus and Acorn

    fantasy list?
    did someone say 'fantasy list?'

    i think if someone is into design & creative
    they are bound to have DREAMS.
    i know i do.

    xxx thanks for the comment xx

  21. Thanks so much for preparing and sharing this wonderful post. I have noticed that in Belgium, too, the orangerie seems to be a staple in the big homes.

    I am definitely saving this post for ideas -- we are adding a sunroom next year, and while it won't be as grand as some of these, there are some great features I need to refer back to.


  22. I have always wanted one of these, as a dining room maybe. The back of our house is the hot and sunny side so no Orangery for me. :(

  23. When I was in college back in the 1970s, a sudden spike in enrollment (combined with a chronic lack of foresight & planning on my part) left me with nowhere to live for the school year, less than a week before classes started.

    I ended up renting a single room--sight unseen--from an old lady who lived in a big old house high on the edge of The Bluffs in Peoria, Illinois. I was expecting some dingy former servant's room under the eaves, but the immense room I found myself living in had been--maybe back about 1900--an orangerie, with all the classic details: the high arched windows on three sides, the brick piers inset with limestone reliefs of flowers, the tiled floor, plus what I can only describe as a dozen Louis XVI radiators. It even still had the big terra-cotta orange tree pots with garlands & putti, although there wasn't anything in them anymore but dead bugs. But it didn't matter. The room itself was high & handsome & sunny, and when I woke up that first morning, the entire Illinois River valley lay spread out before me. My pals might be living in noisy cinderblock apartments, but I had it made. It was like living in a palace.

    Unfortunately, it was a palace without heat. The beautiful radiators weren't hooked up and the glass in the windows rattled in their peeling frames. That wasn't a problem in sunny September, when my room was hotter than hell anyway, or even in October, when every maple tree in the valley below my windows turned yellow at the same time, but about this time of year, the winds that blew up from the river soon made the place unlivable. I hated to leave--for $20 a week or whatever it was that the poor old lady was renting out part of her house to a strange kid for, my room not only had the most spectacular view in town, but also a set of Empire Revival furniture with gilt-bronze mounts & an ancient (& mangy) tiger-skin rug complete with head, a souvenir of my landlady's father's hunting trips to Africa--but I couldn't spend an entire school year in bed, and by December, that was the only place in the room that wasn't ice-cold. So when a room opened up closer to campus, I packed up my stuff & moved out.

    Sometimes I think about my poor old landlady. I hope that my unannounced departure (and the sudden lack of my $20 contribution to her weekly budget) didn't leave her high-&-dry & reduce her to living on cat food, but if so, I've been paying for my youthful thoughtlessness for the last thirty-some years, because, heat or no heat, that handsome, sunny room, with its perfect proportions & killer view turned out to be the single most elegant place I've ever lived, and not a month goes by but I don't dream about it.

  24. simply grand

    ....and you are.
    and thank g-d .......
    so chatty too!!!

    a view -
    is there anything of more value???


  25. If I was fortunate enough to have an orangerie, I would send most of my at home time in it. Portable heaters and all.

  26. fab read thanks for sharing check us out
    Pure Conservatories



Thanks for participating!!

About Renée Finberg

I have been in this business since the age of 22.

I love what I do and cannot imagine my life without Design.

Design Challenges are great.

And because of those challenges

I have imported fine antique pieces from Paris,

Designed and Manufactured Furniture,

Created Fantastic Window Treatments,

And solved all kinds of spatial & architectural issues

With my unique style.

If I can't find it, I create it.

My rooms would make excellent movie sets.

I am a visual, tactile and audio sensitive individual.

Creating is what I live for, not math, not spelling, not science.

Just Great Design.

Just imagine how it would be if each of us,

If only for a few hours of everyday,We could be in a space that is our very own.A place that is exactly the way we want it to be

Surrounded by all the things we wanted to see,

The atmosphere we wanted feel, smell and the sound we wanted to listen to.

Private Paradise



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