The 2017 Newport Flower Show, themed Fête Des Fleurs: Paintings and Parterres, will celebrate its 22nd year with a variety of special events, expert guest speakers, beautiful floral designs, impressive horticulture exhibits, stunning garden displays, unique shopping opportunities, and more. Inspired by France, America’s premier summer flower show will transport guests’ imaginations to the place that has inspired generations of artists and gardeners. Attendees will travel on a French adventure, from grand gardens to Paris chic, at Rosecliff, one of Newport’s most beautiful historic mansions modeled after the Grand Trianon at Versailles. The Show opens on Friday, June 23 and runs through Sunday, June 25, 2017.
With Newport’s largest private ballroom, Rosecliff was constructed in 1902 as a party pavilion for one of the leading society hostesses of the Gilded Age. This snow-white terra-cotta mansion was created for Theresa Fair Oelrichs, heir to the Comstock silver lode in Nevada. It hosted many of the most fabulous entertainments of the period, including a fairy-tale dinner and a party, featuring magician Harry Houdini.
The magnificent three-day event welcomes back Bartlett Tree Experts as the Presenting Sponsor of the Newport Flower Show, which benefits The Preservation Society of Newport County. Additional sponsors include ALEX AND ANI, Atria Senior Living , Brooks Brothers, Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Southeastern New England, Swarovski, United, and The Newport Daily News.
The Show will feature celebrity floral designer Jeff Leatham and noted scholar on French garden history Dr. Eric T. Haskell as special guest speakers, scheduled on Friday and Saturday. Guests will have the rare opportunity to learn from the uniquely talented Leatham, who works as the Artistic Director of the Four Seasons Hotel George V in Paris in addition to designing events for celebrities and world leaders like His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Oprah Winfrey, Madonna, and many more. Leatham is considered the most exciting floral designer in the world. Awarded the prestigious “Knighthood” (“Chevalier de L’Order des Arts et Letters”), the French Government’s highest honor for artists, Jeff designed the first major event to be held in the famed “Galerie des Glaces” (Hall of Mirrors) at Versailles since the time of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette. His work is compared to contemporary art (and is featured at international cultural, business and entertainment events). His vase designs were so exquisite that the Dallas Museum purchased them for their permanent collection. His work.
Haskell, Professor of French Studies & Humanities and Director of the Clark Humanities Museum at Scripps College in California, will share his knowledge on French gardens, their history, and more with guests. Dr. Haskell will share his vast knowledge on French gardens during his lecture “Lasting Landscapes: The French Formal Garden.” He received his Ph.D. in French Literature from the University of California, Irvine, and also studied Art History and Architecture in the graduate program at UCI and at the École du Louvre in Paris. He has delivered over 550 public lectures and scholarly papers in 28 states and 11 foreign countries. In 2013 Haskell received two of France’s highest honors: Chevalier de l’Ordre des Palmes Académics (Knight of the Order of Academic Palms) and Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres (Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters).
Other free lectures and demonstrations by noted plant experts, flower designers and gardeners will
also be presented throughout the weekend.
Fashion icon and interior designer Iris Apfel will also join the Newport Flower Show’s Afternoon Tea reception on Friday, June 23 for a conversation on her fabulous life, fashion, and style. The Afternoon Tea reception will be held on the front lawn of Rosecliff at 3:00 p.m. where guests will be treated to a sampling of savory and sweet delicacies as well as flavored versions of iced or hot teas.
The Opening Night Party, the unofficial “kickoff to summer in Newport,” will take place on Friday, June 23 from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. with a cocktail buffet, live music and dancing, a seaside supper, and other entertaining surprises. The show will continue through the weekend with unforgettable garden exhibits, horticultural entries, floral designs, and children’s programs, all staged
throughout the elegant reception rooms of Rosecliff, its oceanfront terrace and lawn.
New this year, the Newport Flower Show will offer a Fête de la Lune (Feast by Moonlight) at Rosecliff on Saturday, June 24 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Guests can spend an evening strolling through the display gardens, shopping with Flower Show vendors on the front lawn, and viewing the floral designs inside Rosecliff before the sun sets, then can enjoy a summer picnic basket supper on the grounds while viewing the display gardens. Attendees can also opt to stay after supper for a viewing of the 2015 hit movie “A Little Chaos” starring Alan Rickman, Kate Winslet, and Stanley Tucci; film tickets are sold separately. Continue reading