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Concierge Review of The Collector Luxury Inn and Gardens

A Brief History of The Collector Inn

The Collector Inn is a collection of nine historic buildings spread across an entire city block. The oldest house, The Murat, dates back to 1790 and once housed Prince Achille Murat, a nephew of Napoleon Bonaparte and Ralph Waldo Emmerson. The youngest structure, The Well, built as a garage in 1915, was renovated in 1989 as an event space.

Kenneth Worcester Dow was a wealthy heir, eclectic collector, and, quite likely, an obsessive hoarder. He purchased these properties from the 1930s to the 1950s for his residence and storage for all of his finds. Kenneth had exquisite taste and an unquenchable thirst for collecting. In 1989, he donated his entire collection consisting of over 500 paintings, 250 pieces of furniture, 1,000 decorative art objects, and over 1,000 drawings to the Museum of Arts and Sciences.

The Collector Inn property was included in this donation. Kenneth Dow was a passionate collector. However, his preservation skills left much to be desired. The buildings were in extreme disrepair, and there was a push for their demolition. A coalition of concerned citizens armed with Kenneth’s documentation of each building’s unique history saved the buildings, paid for their preservation, and created the Collectors Inn to ensure their future.

That was the short version. If you want to hear the whole story, it’s offered free to guests three times a week as a two-hour guided tour.

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