Thursday, 30 September 2010 02:09

"How Sweet it Is" to Explore an Icon's House - Jackie Gleason's

Written by Angela S Colley
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dining room 2

Okay, imagine this. You are invited to help clean out items from a house for a community garage sale. Would you go, probably not? What if the house once belonged to Jackie Gleason, would you go? Well yes! You wouldn’t think twice. I had the pleasure walking through the rooms, sitting on furniture and touching items that belonged to this icon. Pardon me, but “how sweet it is” (one of Gleason’s famous expressions).

What intrigued me most was seeing the original wall coverings still present in the house. Red flock wallpaper, popular again today, present in the main foyer with a red velvet settee. Both are original to the house that was built in 1965.

settee flock wallpeper

How about walking into the dining room and seeing side chairs covered in a silk fabric pattern that matches the wallpaper?

dining rm chair w original wallpaper

Imagine Gleason sitting behind the desk in his wood paneled office, thinking of acts for the latest show.


What about stepping outside and walking through the breezeway under the covered walkway to the recreation room? As you stroll along you enjoy the breath taking view of the golf course in the backyard.

loggia golf course

The recreation room had its own surprises. It contains some of Gleason’s exercise equipment with a bar and lounge for entertainment. Don’t know who the designer was, but I imagine they tapped into Gleason’s Irish roots to create the pub look. Club chairs, sofas and wall sconces made from wine barrels, and stain glass windows that match the chair backs.

recroom lounge area recroom bar

This adventure was great! I am glad I did not pass up the opportunity.


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Angela S Colley, ASID|CAPS

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