HALS Awarded the Prestigious California Preservation Design Award!

The Friends-sponsored HALS Project, led by Friends member and landscape architect Lisa Gimmy and the liaison for the Southern California chapter for HALS Alison Terry and their terrific team, has been awarded the 2023 California Preservation Design Award!

The prestigious California Preservation Design Awards honor people deserving of special recognition for their outstanding preservation efforts. The winners are selected by a jury of top professionals in the fields of architecture, engineering, planning, and history, as well as renowned architecture critics and journalists… Read More

Don’t Miss the Garden Party of the Year: “Back in Bloom” 2023 Garden Tour and Showcase House Awaits You!

The Friends of Robinson Gardens is very pleased to present its long-anticipated Garden Tour, now open to the public on May 20, 2023, at The Virginia Robinson Gardens, co-chaired by past President Betty Goldstein, Elaine Stein, and Nicole Antoine. The romantic theme, “Back in Bloom,” along with the invitation was conceived by co-chair Elaine. It celebrates a new beginning and the return to VRG’s beloved Garden Tour after a three-year hiatus. Betty explained, “This is our premier fundraiser where funds are raised for the restoration needs of the estate and the Children’s Science program which has served more than 5,000 children throughout the pandemic years, keeping Mrs. Robinson’s legacy for the welfare of children alive. We are excited to be able to have this event again and hope you can join us. Tickets will be available on our website soon. See you there!”… Read More

In Memoriam: Suzanne Rheinstein

The immensely talented and world-renowned interior designer Suzanne Rheinstein sadly passed away on March 20, 2023. Her elegant and classic style was reflected in the exquisite interiors she created in homes, hotels, and retail spaces; in her store Hollyhock on La Cienega in Los Angeles; and in her fabric line for Lee Jofa. A passionate gardener, she was on the board of the Garden Conservancy. According to House Beautiful magazine, Suzanne said, “Having beautiful things around you is wonderful, but living beautifully is more important… Read More

Sold-Out Book Club Meeting on Charlie Chaplin!

On March 18, 2023, at the Pool Pavilion of The Virginia Robinson Gardens, another quarterly meeting of the Tea, Scones, and Gardens Book Club took place. A record turnout of 26 spells the future for this popular event, so please sign up early so we won’t have to put you on the waiting list! 

The book Charles Chaplin: My Autobiography brought out comments from attendees about Chaplin as a wordsmith, a multi-talented artist, a true supporter of his entertainer mother, and an acquaintance of so many important recognizable names of his era such as Albert Einstein, Douglas Fairbanks, Mary Pickford, Marion Davies, Winston Churchill, and so many others… Read More

Famed Author Victoria Kastner is the 2023 Garden Tour Grand Marshal!

The Friends of Robinson Gardens are thrilled to honor Victoria Kastner, former historian of the Hearst Castle, as our Grand Marshal for the 2023 “Back in Bloom” Garden Tour. A spell-binding and fantastic speaker, she has generously given many talks at the Virginia Robinson Gardens. Her most recent lecture was on her newest book, Julia Morgan: An Intimate Biography of the Trailblazing Architect… Read More

Lecture on “Easels in Eden: Monet’s Gardening and Painting at Giverny” by the Eminent Dr. Eric Haskell

On March 2, 2023, the Fellows of the Friends of Robinson Gardens were treated to a brilliant and gorgeous lecture by the much-in-demand speaker Dr. Eric Haskell on Claude Monet’s luminous paintings and gardens at Giverny. Thanks to Fellows Chair Jeanne Anderson, who organized the event, and Shiva Moshtael, who graciously opened her elegant home to the group, the Fellows could have been in a Parisian salon. 

Fluent in French, and a distinguished and prolific speaker, Dr. Haskell is Professor Emeritus of French studies and Interdisciplinary Studies, Scripps College and Director Emeritus of the Clark Humanities Museum, Scripps College. Ellen Levitt introduced Dr. Haskell, saying that in 2013, two of France’s highest honors were bestowed upon him… Read More

Expert Brandon Tam Gives a Talk on Orchids

On February 22, 2023, several people gathered in the Pool Pavilion at The Virginia Robinson Gardens to hear Brandon Tam give a talk on orchids.

Brandon is the Orchid Collection Specialist at the Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens. He started at the Huntington at age 16 while pursuing and earning a bachelor’s degree in plant science from the California State Polytechnic University at Pomona… Read More

Our April Spotlight: Carolyn Bloom

What could be a better omen for being involved with the Friends of Robinson Gardens than the last name of BLOOM?  That would be long-time Friends and Benefactors Carolyn and Marty Bloom, who have been such an important part of our beloved Gardens since they moved to Los Angeles in 2003.

Carolyn created a stunning Garden at their home on Laurel Way, which she generously opened for Membership events — where we were serenaded by the player piano! She collaborated with a sculptor who did some amazing installations in her backyard. Large, oversized planters, panels, and fountains – etched to echo the ferns, leaves, and fronds of the greenery – appeared like a modern-age Stonehenge across the property… Read More