Entrance to Romance.

Nestled in historical south St. Louis, Missouri, the Fleur-de-Lys Mansion is a pleasant and luxurious surprise, a true jewel harbored by the beauty of parks and national landmarks. For romance, peace, and solace, you need look no farther because this exquisite gift sits just off of Grand Boulevard amongst other beautiful and original historical homes and buildings. This urban paradise is entered through a grand iron gate.

We rang the doorbell two hours early, but we are greeted warmly through a fabulous heavy wooden door of the grand entry. Solid oak lines the massive opening, accented with original slabs of granite. Oak crown molding is gorgeously placed throughout the entire home and the grand stairway and rails are right out of a romance novel.  Hardwood floors gleam throughout, with comfortable and classy furniture adorning the common rooms.  Soft relaxing music drifts about creating a feeling of peace and serenity.




Fleur-de-Lys in Spring;
and the parlor room, below.



The Fleur-De-Lys mansion is a stately B&B, owned and operated by Jan and Dave Seifert, who live for the comforts of their guests, taking time to know each one.  We relax and visit with Jan in the fanciful parlor, loaded with books of all types.  The details are in order: not a single book is out of place; not a speck of dust can be found; and the home glows with the beauty and elegance of Jan’s professional touch.

Precious paintings and artwork on the walls are museum quality; a gorgeous round table rests resolutely in a separate dining room where one painting fills the entire wall, yet fits perfectly, making the room magnificent.

A crystal show case lines one wall in the piano room where a liquor bar is also located. Guests are encouraged to play the piano at any time... Fresh baked cookies and coffee are always available and extremely enjoyable.

 I was amazed at the excellent condition of the mansion. Large, solid pocket doors were in every room, making the home even more spacious. Each room had a personality of its own – and all were large and open and they sparkled and shined.




The hot tub overlooks the gardens.

A hot tub is located in its own private room on the second floor with its balcony overlooking the beautiful gardens and pond of the back courtyard.  I can assure you that my husband and I made a healthy and relaxing choice by soaking our tired bodies in the heat of the great jetted tub. Soft and comfortable robes were provided.  If you happen to fall in love with these gorgeous robes, they can be purchased and taken home. What a great way to remember a personal and romantic experience!

The 17 room home was originally designed by William A. Lucas in 1913, built for the family of W.E. Beckman, who owned Bakers and Confectioners Supply Company.  Each side of the mansion is a duplicate image of the other.  Beckman’s daughter and her family resided on the west side, while Mr. and Mrs. Beckman lived on the east side.  By the 1970s the last of the Beckman family had left the mansion forever.




Guests are invited to play the Grand Piano.

The mansion sat idle for several years, and Mother Nature and Father Time began to take their toll on the old place and it rapidly deteriorated. The home was dubbed “The Pigeon House” because of the ally cats and pigeons that took over on the third floor. Architectural thieves stole precious stained glass, and vandalized the premises.

In 1989 a young couple purchased the mansion and took on an 18 month restoration. Upon completion, the family dwelled within the beauty of the home for seven years.  In 1996 the home was purchased by Kathryn Leep, who turned the magnificent edifice into a small luxury inn.




Dave and Jan Seifert,
Fleur-de-Lys comfort providers.

In February 2007 the home was reborn and loved by the care giving hands of the Seifert’s. Both Jan and Dave worked in the medical field, giving care to the sick and the tired. They loved their work with a passion and upon retirement, they carried their compassion onward as genteel innkeepers.

The mansion consists of four classic guest rooms - all named after well known parks in the St. Louis area.

Jan led us on a house tour regaling touching stories about the inn.   The tall ceilings were replete with detailed handcrafted woodwork; my carpenter husband could not take his eyes off the rich artisan workmanship.

The signature romantic “Tower Grove Room” is oversized with exquisite décor throughout! Perfect for a bridal suite, it offers a king sized bed, stacked high with gorgeous decorative pillows; the winning touch is a Jacuzzi for two with a separate shower and heated towel bar. Ahh, the warm Egyptian cotton towels wrap your body in luxury, hot off the rack!  It is priced at $295 nightly on weekends, and $225 nightly on weekdays. I assure you this room is worth every penny!

The “Forest Park Room” is breathtaking, featuring an ornate mural by Leslie Faust above the two person jetted tub. The mural brings a bit of the park to you – like a secluded, yet romantic forest, as you relax in comfort on the inviting king-sized bed complete with cherry furnishings!  This room has another full bathtub, shower, double sinks, and let’s not forget the heated towel bar. This room is priced at $295 nightly on weekends and $225 nightly on weekdays.




The Tower Room, above; ornate
stairs lead to the four suites.




Forest Park Room, above;
ornate oak scrolling throughout.











The Botanical Room., above;
The Reservoir Room, below.


The third room bears the door plate “Botanical Garden Room” and it is wonderfully decorated with soft colors and floral designs. This bright sunny room boasts a bay window with expansive views, a queen-sized sleigh bed, and antique hardwood floors. This room is priced at $195 nightly on weekends and $150 nightly on weekdays.

My husband and I stepped back in time when we were graced with the “Reservoir Park Room”, which has the most fabulous bay window views overlooking the picturesque Compton Hill Water Tower in Reservoir Park. Its comfortable four poster queen-sized bed was stacked high with fluffy pillows.  There is an attached private bath with heated towel bar. The room is priced at $195 nightly on weekends and $150 nightly on weekdays.

The tastefully decorated chambers give every room its very own signature and beauty, with the potential for lasting memories.  Packages are available, including four course dinners (designed especially for your taste), spa treatments, massages, carriage rides in the park, and more!

The Seiferts thought of everything. If you left something at home, it was ready and available, right down to tooth brushes and contact lens solution. Want a late night snack? No problem! A gorgeous little cabinet contains ice, a small refrigerator stocked with beverages, and snacks of all types, to satisfy any snack attack!

A delectable “incredible edible moment” breakfast was served the next morning. Dave and Jan worked diligently together as a team, making our breakfast experience a sensation! We started with an excellent berry yogurt topped with nuts, and a scone like no other! Then it was time for the main course, a perfectly baked dish of Black Forest ham, eggs and cheese.




Sensational breakfast experience.

The Fleur-de-Lys Mansion experience was so relaxing and rewarding, and all that I could think of is that I did not want to return home any time soon.

If you are dreaming of a romantic getaway with your special someone, or just a little R&R, you must visit the Fleur-de-Lys Mansion. You will not be disappointed, and will want to return again and again. What a magical and memorable place for couples of all ages to experience and enjoy!


The Fleur-de-Lys Mansion
3500 Russell at Grand
St. Louis, Missouri  63104
888.693.3500 
www.thefleurdelys.com

The Seiferts assisted us with great local restaurant dining options. We followed their advice and tried a couple of different places while visiting.



Fabulous Dining

For the evening we chose the “City Diner”, a fabulous little place located at 3139 South Grand Boulevard.  It is owned by Peter Stoto, and managed by Dennis Adams. The restaurant is a 1950s flash back, with photos of Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley, and James Dean and others on the walls.  The dining attire is laid back. The food is delicious with very generous portions. Peter’s specialties are his family recipes of chili or meatloaf; both are recipes that have been in his family for years. Our Reuben sandwich and double cheeseburger were gigantic. Our waiter, Bill has been serving for nearly five years. This tells me that this is not only great food, but a great place to work as well! These people love their jobs.

C
ity Diner hours are 7 a.m. — 11 p.m. Mon. to Thurs., and 24 hours Fri.-Sun. closing 10 PM Sun. For more information call 314-772-6100.




The retro Bailey's Chocolate Bar.
1915 Park Ave
Saint Louis, MO 63104

(314)-241-8100

www.baileyschocolatebar.com
Open 7 days a week.

Dessert

For desert we went to Bailey’s Chocolate Bar, located on 1915 Park Avenue in Lafayette Square

Bailey’s is an excellent for alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages. There are 15 different chocolate martinis, over 100 varieties of beer, hot cocoas, shakes, and coffees. The desert is out of this world, with the award winning “Chocolate Inebriation” being a number one hit with many and voted one of the best 25 things to eat in St. Louis. It is a chocolate cake loaded with goodness! Layers of chocolate are topped with an out-of-this-world cinnamon ice cream. The desert list goes on and on, and all of them are incredible. There are also appetizers, such as pizza, cheese plates and homemade bread.

The atmosphere is very cozy, done up in red decor with dimmed lighting, making gatherings and conversations very pleasant. Although a bit pricey, I would have to say it is definitely worth every dime.  If you love this one, try its St. Louis sister restaurant, “The Rooster”, a European-style cafe, specializing in crepes and unique sandwiches.



Missouri Botanical Gardens



The Ridgeway Center is the entrance
to the botanical gardens.



For our adventure of the day, we chose the famous Missouri Botanical Gardens, a national historic landmark close to the mansion.

The garden is thriving with 79-acres of landscaping with trees and shrubs from long ago. The gardens founder was Henry Shaw who came to the St. Louis area in 1819. He founded the gardens in 1859 and it is currently the oldest botanical garden in continuous operation in Missouri. Mr. Shaw is laid to rest in the garden in which he loved and adored.

Some of the most splendid tropical horticultural and rainforest displays are in the “Climatron Conservatory”, which was, built in 1960, as the world’s first geodesic dome greenhouse. It is filled with gorgeous waterfalls and flowers, tall trees, and greenery.




The Falls inside the Climatron.

While visiting the gardens we took a guided tour by tram to learn some of the fascinating history and stories involved with its foundation. Chinese, English, German gardens, as well as a 14-acre Japanese landscape are on the tram route. Over 5,400 trees are on the grounds and many are rare and unusual. Mr. Shaw planted many himself.

The garden has a highly regarded education program and has the world’s largest and most widely used botanical database.

We happened to visit on the opening day of the exhibition of the popular pop artist Niki De Saint Phalle. This consisted of 40 colorful mosaic and painted sculptures of animals, dancing women, heroes, and totems gathered from around the world. These were not only fascinating to see, but some you were even able to sit upon and touch.




The futuristic Climatron.

The Ridgeway Center is the visitor’s center and main entrance to the gardens. There is a 385-seat Shoenberg Theatre which hosts concerts, events, and lectures throughout the year. You can dine at the Sassafras Café while visiting the grounds.

The Linean House was built in 1882. It houses winter palms, tree ferns, citrus trees and much more. It is said to be among the oldest operating display greenhouse in the U.S.

The Gladney and Lehman Rose Gardens are spectacular and one of the most popular to visit. There are over 2,600 individual plants, encompassing 265 varieties.




Kids discover pop artist's
Niki in the Garden.


I have to mention the Doris I. Schnuck Children’s Garden, which provides a fun-filled adventure for the little ones! They can learn of the importance of plants and nature while having a blast in this nifty little educational area!

The Botanical Gardens is a popular year around destination with many annual events. The Missouri Botanical Garden’s mission is “to discover and share the knowledge about plants and their environment, in order to preserve and enrich life”.

For more information about the Missour Botanical Gardens, visit
www.mobot.org

Feature by Lisa L. Fellows, Jetsetters Magazine Missouri Correspondent; photos by Lisa and courtesy of The Fleur-de-Lys Mansion.