At the entrance today, greeting visitors, are the original large iron gates, which are illuminated by intricate iron work completed by a Master Craftsman named Samuel Yellin in 1917. Coming through these gates of beautifully detailed iron work, you enter a world apart. Surrounded by the Allegheny National Forest, on 300 acres of land, the Olmsted Manor and Retreat Center offers visitors an exquisite experience of quiet and serene solitude.

Let the natural beauty and historical significance of Olmsted renew your spirit after the hustle and bustle of the holiday season has concluded. Located at 17 East Main Street in the intimate village of Ludlow, Pennsylvania, Olmsted Manor and Retreat Center is the perfect, peaceful and rejuvenating, refuge for your next getaway.

Enjoy unique overnight accommodations, any time of the year, in the 1917 Tudor-style manor house, Groves Lodge or Carriage House. The ambiance, comfort and home cooked meals make Olmsted the perfect location for group retreats, seminars, workshops, family getaways or a personal overnight adventure.

The Manor, an original Tudor-style mansion, offers eight individual and charming guest bedrooms with accommodations for up to 12 guests. The spacious living room with fireplace and grand piano, elegant dining room and furnished kitchen, all retain their original architectural details and elegance. The serene ambiance inside George and Iva Olmsted’s family home makes the manor house the perfect location to find rejuvenation and relaxation.

Groves Lodge is a modern, fully accessible facility, and opposed to the family atmosphere of the Manor and Carriage House, the Lodge includes hotel-style bedrooms and bathrooms to accommodate up to 42 guests, with a central dining area for up to 50 guests. Built on the slope of Olmsted’s spring-lined hillside, the cut stone construction of this building with its informal lounge and inviting fireplace gives the Lodge an atmosphere of comfort and rustic charm. The recently constructed annex to the Lodge holds two spacious meeting areas for guest use.

The Carriage House accommodates guests in a private, two-bedroom, apartment-style lodging located above the former Olmsted Carriage Garage. Book for the private solitude of a tranquil individual retreat or quaint, cozy family getaway. The Carriage House sits next to the scenic, wooded setting of Wildcat Park, hiking trails, hemlock groves, prime native trout fishing in nearby babbling brooks and a multitude of differing flora and fauna throughout the seasons. Wildcat Park is a historic community park, established in 1925, and created through the generous efforts of Mr. Olmsted and other prominent members of the Ludlow community.

Beyond the spacious living room of the Manor and the two meeting areas of the Lodge there is Hickman Hall. This spacious, fully-equipped meeting facility with conference chairs and tables for 40 to 50 guests is centrally located between Groves Lodge and the Manor House. Hickman Hall is available for use by overnight guests or day groups and must be booked well in advance of the anticipated event date.

Delve into the vast amenities the Olmsted Manor and Retreat Center has to offer, and work with Olmsted’s friendly staff to design the best possible retreat to suite your specific purpose and needs, while working within your individualized time frame and budget.

The retreat center is made up of the original Olmsted estate. George Olmsted married Iva Groves in 1904. They had their first child, Robert, in 1908 and a daughter, Betty, was born in 1912. They then began planning for their family home to be built in the small village of Ludlow, Pa.

Philadelphia architect Albert Bodker initially refused the project arguing that a small community such as Ludlow would not justify such a mansion. However, upon pressure from Mr. Olmsted he eventually relented and spent a year onsite with builders from the Hyde-Murphy Company of Ridgeway, Pa., until the Manor House was completed in 1917. Pennsylvania Route 6 now runs in front of the Manor House, dividing the property, with the Carriage House sitting along the opposing side.

Upon completion the inside of the Tudor mansion contained wonders such as oak paneling, a Steinway piano and family crests worked in stained glass on the main stairwell, which still exist today. For the children and young at heart, there remains the original cork-floored game room and private two-lane bowling alley. The Olmsted Family of the early 20th century created an unforgettable, one-of-kind, overnight experience which the entire family will enjoy.

Ask to explore the Olmsted family photo albums, which are available for guests to view. You will find a beautiful photo of the daughter of the house, Betty, crossing Pennsylvania Route 6 for her wedding, which was performed in the vast gardens of the Olmsted estate. The extensive gardens of Olmsted were originally overseen by landscape architect Alling S. DeForest of Rochester, NY. His stonework and design skills channeled water off the spring-laden hillside. Today the springs not only provide fresh water for the retreat center but to 60 families in Ludlow, as well.

The grounds of the retreat center are exquisitely maintained, year round, and are worth a visit during any season. The grounds are meant to be toured and guests are encouraged to enjoy them. Guests can enjoy a moment of privacy in the lovely Teahouse, within the walking Labyrinth or on nearby hiking trails. The 300 acre Olmsted Estate also contains lily ponds, cascading fountains, tennis courts, terraced flower gardens, swimming pool, horse stable, putting green and a picnic area with an outside fireplace. Once visitors step foot through the welcoming iron gates they are surrounded by the beautiful ambiance of the Olmsted estate, inside and out.

Plan Your Trip

For more information about the Olmsted Manor Retreat Center, to schedule a tour or to book your future rejuvenating retreat call (814) 945-6512 or visit olmstedmanor.org.

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Daniella Marie Griesbaum was born and raised in Lewis Run, Pa., where she graduated from Bradford Area High School in 2003. After graduation she moved on to West Chester, Pa., where she attended West Chester University and graduated magna cum laud with a bachelor’s degree in liberal arts with a concentration in Journalism. After receiving her degree, she moved back to the Allegheny National Forest region to pursue a career in communications.