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“Simply stunning!”
Review of Stetson Mansion

Stetson Mansion
Ranked #1 of 61 things to do in DeLand
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: Stetson Mansion is a spectacular Victorian mansion built for famed hat maker and philanthropist John B Stetson in 1886. Situated right between Orlando and Daytona in DeLand makes it convenient for all visiting the central Florida area. This is Florida's first luxury estate and houses some of the most beautiful and intricate parquet floors in the world. The mansion is one of the first homes in the world to be designed and built with Edison electricity. The owners have painstakingly renovated every square inch of the 10,000 sq foot masterpiece while incorporating today's modern conveniences. All this was done without compromising the architectural or historical integrity. Every room on every one of the three floors is magnificently decorated and every room features a different style floor and window design There is Reservations are required $20-$30 per person and children are $15. Payment is cash at the door and we do charge applicable sales tax. See you at the Mansion!!
Reviewed November 27, 2012

What an incredible home, both for the Christmas decorations and the sheer historic nature of it! JT was fantastic and I cannot recommend visiting it highly enough. MAGICAL!

1  Thank Alistair P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JT T, Owner at Stetson Mansion, responded to this reviewResponded November 30, 2012

Thank so very much!! I cannot begin to tell you just how much joy and satisfaction I get in sharing the mansion with so many amazing people around the world like yourself! All of us here at the Stetson Mansion wish you and yours a Merry Christmas and thank you so much for your 5 star review!! Cheers!!

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Reviewed November 27, 2012

My husband, son, and I recently had the pleasure of visiting the Stetson Mansion, with it exquisitely all dressed up for Christmas. I love the older mansions with all the architecture, many rooms, and the feeling of grandeur that goes with a truly fabulous mansion renovation. We have visited many restored mansions--but this one is "The One". It is a must see for everyone. My husband and son are not into touring homes, but even they were impressed, amazed, and anything but bored. J.T. has done an unbelievable job with the decorating. I have a young spirit and a zest for living and The Stetson was a step back in time as for the furnishings, the flooring, the beautiful grounds, the stained glass windows, the trees decorated with hats as you entered through the double doors, the crystal chandeliers, the many decorated Christmas trees throughout the home, the display of snow babies and nutcrackers, and a tree completely decorated with Radko ornaments, and most of all--the feeling of belonging. I was so excited--like a kid in a candy shop and just could not hold back my excitement and awe of this place. Every detail was lovingly and carefully put into the restoration and decorating. I love Christmas and I am a Christmas baby, so the wonder of this home was as if it was created just for me. I could just picture myself living and entertaining in this house (all except for the work and money of keeping it going). This could certainly become a family tradition to be visited every Christmas. I am sure it is just as magical the rest of the year, but there is just something special that comes into our hearts at Christmas, and not only brings out the best in us, but puts the life back into our hearts. The owners live in and often do tours of the house. They are so warm and want to make sure you enjoy The Stetson. We have visited the Biltmore Manision, The Hemmingway House, Falling Water--but none of them come close to the beautiful and charming Stetson Mansion. They also have renovated the old school house in the back. Many dignataries have stayed there. The Stetson also hosts Weddings! Can you imagine getting married in a place like that? It is truly a magical place, and you hate to leave. It takes you back in time to an era that is long past. The Stetson House should be featured in Better Homes and Gardens, or a Magazine done on famous older Mansions. You get the most bang for your buck here and it is only a little over an hour's drive from The Villages, Fl. It is Florida at it's best and a must see for any visitors you may have. If you have a group, you can call and set up your own tour. We were offered a discount at the Brickhouse Restaurant in Deland, so, after visiting some shops in Downtown Deland, we had a delicious lunch there. The whole day was just perfect. I can't wait to visit again! A big thanks to J.T. and Michael, the owners, for their warm hospitality. Also, to Janae, for all her help in getting us booked for the tour. By the time we left, I felt like part of the family.
Merry Christmas!

Thank jevande
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JT T, Owner at Stetson Mansion, responded to this reviewResponded November 28, 2012

OMG!!! Words could never convey my feelings and gratitude for such an incredible review! I know that it can be a bit of a pain to write a review, but to express your experience in the detail and description that you have is spectacular!! We have received such warm and heartfelt letters, cmments and reviews that I am sometimes overcome with emotion! We love the Stetson Mansion and to see our years of dedication and hard work being embraced and celebrated in such a unanimous way is so rewarding! Michael and I live in a constant state of gratitude for having the privlege to share this masterpiece with thousands of guests from around the globe! So thank you for time with us and for sharing the highlights of your visit to Deland and the Stetson Mansion!! Have a very Merry Christmas and happy and healthy New Year!! See you again real soon!!

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Reviewed November 26, 2012

This is a tour of of the Stetson Mansion located in Deland, Fl. It is advertised as a one hour and twenty minute tour and there were 17-18 people in the group. Due to the extensive decorations a group size of 12 would have allowed better access to the various rooms and to hear the tour guide if you ended up at the end of the group. Was the tour worth it? ABSOLUTELY. We thoroughly enjoyed the beautiful artistry of the unique Christmas decorations. This was the Christmas tour and my wife and friends plan to return when the Christmas decorations have been put away so that we can focus more on the beautiful house itself.

Thank Edgar M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JT T, Owner at Stetson Mansion, responded to this reviewResponded November 28, 2012

Thank you for visiting with us for the Christmas season! This time of year is very busy and we only have so many days to share the mansion with thousands and thousands of visitors from around the world so our tours are always at capacity during the holidays. Every now and than smaller tours are available but it is rare. That being said I am so looking forward to your return visit and want to wish you and yours a happy and healthy holiday!!

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Reviewed November 26, 2012

This historic mansion encapsulates how you can respect the integrity of its history and bring in modern touches to make it livable and beautiful. I visited November 20, 2012 for the Christmas tour and was blown away. I wish newer homes could have such a wide, welcoming porch with cushioned wrought iron furniture and tall lamps. Decked out with pinecones and white lights, I could have sat there and been totally comfortable. The main parlor and library were totally decked out for the season. I lost count of how many trees were throughout the house. I got many ideas for decorating for Christmas by using simple votives, mixing in collectibles, and shimmery fabric you can get from the craft stores. Even if it wasn't Christmas, I especially noted how arranging furniture in intimate conversation groupings can make large rooms feel intimate. You'll get a lot of decorating ideas and be surprised that some of them aren't that expensive. Kudos to all of the sponsors such as Cambria, Hunter Lighting, Fieldstone Cabinetry. I will keep them in mind. The one-room schoolhouse layout is perfect for that small cabin you always wanted to get away to. This is a perfect place to have your small wedding or conference. All the leaded glass and glass stained windows are just beautiful. Our host for the tour, TJ was totally entertaining and funny. Even my husband enjoyed it. I'd go back again because I love what they have done to the home and would want to copy some of their ideas. Afterall, isn't copying the best form of flattery.

1  Thank Chgotourist
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JT T, Owner at Stetson Mansion, responded to this reviewResponded November 27, 2012

First of all I would just like to thank you for your beautiful words that you so lovingly composed in this review! When I started to read your comments I actaully got goose bumps because you so got what the mansion is all about! This is not just a beautiful structure but it is a monument that stands as a testament to all that is great about our beautiful country! So many of our national treasures have been lost to the wrecking ball and that is why we decided to step up to the plate and restore the Stetson Mansion! You allowed yourself to be swept up by the magic of the mansion and absorb all the details and elements that make this place so special! Thank you so much for visiting with us and allowing me to fill your mind and heart with all the joys I have been blessed with in this special place that I get to call my home!! Have a blessed and happy holiday..and we could not be more flattered than to have you be inspired by some of our ideas!!!

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Reviewed November 26, 2012

Just off 15A Truck Route, in the industrial part of Deland, Florida is the hidden diamond of a find, Stetson Mansion. Parking is on site behind large secure gates and guests anticipate the tour on the comfortable, large, southern style front porch of Stetson Mansion, previous home to the entrepreneur hat designer, John B. Stetson. The tour guide spoke clearly to the back of the room, and made eye contact with all of the guests. He was very welcoming, making a point to say, that this was his home, and we could sit or stand, as we wished, and that this was not a museum. Although, the home WAS pristine and museum-like, in that the original parquet floors shone like the top of the Chrysler building, event the ceiling high details and displays did not have a bit of dust, and it is obvious that every thing has it's place, and that the owners are grateful for, and care about the things that they have.

The stories that our guide JT shared with us were of importance and of humor. I hung on every word and remember most of the in-depth history because it was extremely interesting.

There are three floors of treasures to behold. The more modern restorations were added to make the mansion livable, but have historical significance. Even the proprietor's choice to honor Ms. Stetson's love of dragonflies was remembered and embossed inside the copper bowl of the modern kitchen sink. I found similarity in the hatter's remembrance of her, with alternating fleur de lis style hearts carved in the decorative wood molding. Everything new has an echo of the past. Several disintegrated shutters, seemingly impossible to restore the original integrity of, were brought back to life, using traditional tung oil methods. The amount of care and upkeep of this jewel is astounding to think about.

Our guide reminded us on the staircase up to the second and third floors, to keep our steps on the outside of each stair, and offered a kind hand to guests, on the staircase or porch to make sure his guests were sure footed. The stairs had a sturdy handrail as well.

The tour was not overly long. It was just enough time to remain engaged, and the additional schoolhouse tour was also charming, and is now used for high profile guests and brides. We were told an exciting and special story about an old gunnysack, which our guide found during the time he restored the mansion, as he searched for the Stetson Jewels!

What to expect: colorful short stories, hidden rooms, themed rooms, (like the stunning "Peacock") murals and artisan plaster, hand sculpted tromp l'oeil reliefs, artwork and stained glass with a Tiffany flare. Also expect, jaw dropping, original, hand inlaid, Escher like parquet floors, and decadent, creatively designed centerpieces, professional holiday wreathes (on sale with a tour,) garland and displays which idolize the childlike innocence of the "ideal" Christmas experience. Royal perfection at a value. See the teaser here: http://vimeo.com/53477616

-Shannon Holt,
local artist

1  Thank shannoneliot
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JT T, Owner at Stetson Mansion, responded to this reviewResponded December 8, 2012

Just when I think that I have received the most amazing review ever than another comes along!! How can I begin to express my gratitude for your beautiful, kind and all encompassing review! There really are no words..so all I can say is Thank You!! The way in which you detailed and led the reader through the highlights of the mansion was amazing. I found myself wanting to read more and find out what's next..and I live here!!! We always ask our guests to please consider writing a review and when they do it is so very much appreciated. But when a guests has been so inspired to write such a complete heartfelt entry it is something very very special for us. I know that the magic and grandeur of the estate has touched your heart the same that it has ours and I know that whenever you recollect about the mansion that a smile will be following close by! Thank you again for allowing us to share our home with you and for telling the world about this magical place called the Stetson Mansion!!

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