The fourth season of Netflix’s hit series The Crown premiered yesterday, and we’ve since spent countless hours lusting over the stunning English and Scottish estates used as filming locations for the latest episodes. House Beautiful did some sleuthing and found that a grand total of seven different manor houses and castles can be seen throughout the new season. The best part? You can actually visit many of these homes at your own leisure, and you don’t even have to be a member of the royal family (or even portray one on screen) to do so! Below, explore these stately sites and be prepared to experience some serious wanderlust and design inspiration.
The grandiose Burghley House may look familiar to you if you’re a period drama connoisseur-it was also featured in the 2005 film adaptation of Pride and Prejudice. In season four of The Crown, this home acts as Windsor Castle. The stately home actually has royal ties in real life: Burghley House was built nearly 500 years ago by Sir William Cecil, Queen Elizabeth I’s Lord High Treasurer. Both the house and the gardens are open to the public, and the home’s interiors are unlike anything us commoners are used to. Expect to see cathedral-esque painted ceilings and walls that are so extravagant Michelangelo would be jealous.
Somerleyton Hall acts as the Sandringham Estate, Queen Elizabeth II’s country home that has been in her family for four generations. Although Somerleyton Hall is privately owned, it is open for tours from April through September every year. This Anglo-Italian-style home is a Grade II-listed site that features carved wooden staircases, stained glass windows as part of the ceiling, and classic coffered ceilings. A home was first built on the grounds of what is now Somerleyton Hall in 1240, and the structure that exists today was built in the early 1600s.
3 Ardverikie Estate in Kinloch Laggan, Scotland
It wouldn’t be The Crown without a few castles in the mix, so the Ardverikie Estate makes for the perfect stand-in for Balmoral Castle, being that both structures are Scottish castles. Queen Elizabeth II is the owner of Balmoral Castle, which is where Prince Charles self-isolated earlier this year after he tested positive for COVID-19. As for the Ardverikie Estate, you can expect to see it again soon: It was also used as a filming location for the next James Bond film, No Time to Die, which is set to release in 2021. If you’re dying to visit this impressive castle, it’s available to tour, and it’s also a wedding venue!
Yet another Scottish castle makes a cameo in season four of The Crown: Dunbeath Castle, which was used for the scenes that are meant to take place in Iceland. This Scottish Baronial-style structure has origins tracing back to 1428, and it was remodeled in both the 1700s and 1800s. Its most obvious feature is its cliffside location, which offers idyllic seclusion and privacy for its residents. Unfortunately, Dunbeath Castle is not open to the public, but its two walled gardens are available to tour by appointment, year round.
Lancaster House was enlisted to play the part of Buckingham Place’s interiors, and it even has its own ties to royalty-the Duke of York commissioned Lancaster House’s creation in 1825. This Neoclassical mansion is typically only open to the public for the annual Open House London festival, a weekend-long event that allows visitors to tour architectural sites that are usually closed to the public, including Marlborough House, Horse Guards, Mansion House, and the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office. Better yet, you don’t even need to leave your own home to tour Lancaster House-you can virtually tour it at no cost!
Another impressive home that was used to depict the interiors of Buckingham Palace is Wilton House, which can also be seen in this year’s Emma., Pride and Prejudice (2005), and Sense and Sensibility (1995). Clearly, Wilton House perfectly suits a range of period dramas, which should come as no surprise given its impressive history. Wilton House has belonged to the Earls of Pembroke for over 400 years, and it sits on 22 acres of lush landscaping, so there’s plenty to see here. Fortunately, this country home and its grounds are open for public tours, and—get ready for this, design lovers—Wilton House hosts the Annual Antiques Fair every March.
We’ve already explored the sites that acted as Buckingham Palace’s interiors for season four of The Crown, but what about the exterior of the famed palace? Moor Park Mansion and the Old Royal Naval College took on this role, given that they both exemplify features of Classical architecture that can also be seen in Buckingham Palace’s facade. Since 1923, Moor Park Mansion has been part of Moor Park Golf Club, and you can tour this impressive site through guided tours held by the National Association of Decorative and Fine Arts Society.