A few fellow Realtors and I took a break from touring homes for work and toured a special house here in Oklahoma just for fun. We headed downtown to the Oklahoma Governor’s Mansion yesterday for a tour. The mansion is near the State Capitol in Oklahoma City at 23rd and Phillips.
They dedicated the Governor’s residence in 1928, the three-story home has about 14,000 square feet including a basement. Our tour was limited to the main floor library, dining room, and kitchen. While previous First Families have lived in the entire home, Governor Mary Fallon and her family use the second floor as their private residence. The third floor is a ball room that isn’t used for entertaining as often as it once was because there are no elevators in the house. The basement is now a media room (it was added by the Henry’s) and gym.
While touring the library on the main floor the docent shared that a previous First Lady (who shall remain nameless) wanted to update the library so she had all the walnut paneling and trim painted white. I couldn’t help but think about how Joanna Gaines on Fixer Upper is always painting woodwork bright white. Maybe that First Lady was ahead of her time! When the mansion was renovated during Governor Keating’s term in the 1990’s, the room was restored to its original 1920’s glory.
There isn’t a kitchen on the second floor so the Governor and her family use the original kitchen on the ground floor. While touring the space I was taken by its normalcy. It was just like your kitchen or mine; the dishwasher was running, there was a roll of paper towel by the sink, and plastic pet dishes sat on the floor. They probably sipped coffee there before heading out for the day. Don’t get me wrong, there are some pretty nifty things that our kitchens don’t have like rose granite countertops from Granite, Oklahoma, a table made from an antique French door, and a dishwasher that completes a load in ten minutes. Seriously, where can I get one?
In the 1970’s a pool was added to the grounds. As you can see it’s in the shape of the state of Oklahoma. The panhandle is a hot tub! Near the pool is the Phillip’s Pavillion where the Governor host large events. It’s available to rent for your own event Monday through Friday but weddings and parties are not permitted.
The Oklahoma Governor’s Mansion is open for free tours from noon until three on Wednesday afternoons September through May. Get more information here. The tour doesn’t take very long. If I were to go again, I would plan to also tour the Oklahoma History Center since it’s almost across the street. Maybe next time!