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“Ooh… Aah” and Help – 9th Annual Tour de Cuisine raises money for Children’s Hospital

One couple drove all the way from Moyock, NC. Another thought it would be a romantic way to spend a Sunday afternoon. A woman received tickets as a mother’s day gift and brought her best friend. A group of giddy Millennials couldn’t wait for the beer and wine garden party.

On Sunday, May 19, crowds of curious and excited ticket holders donned their spring attire and brought comfortable shoes to participate in the much anticipated Tour de Cuisine presented by the King’s Daughters.

Tour de Cuisine homeowners Dr. Guy and Lisa Trengove-Jones dressed for the occasion. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Tour de Cuisine and Beer/Wine Garden guests ready for festivities. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

King’s Daughters Executive Director, Lisa Coleman (far right) delivers supplies with assistance from Tour de Cuisine committee members. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

In its 9th year, Tour de Cuisine provides guests with access to some of the most luxurious homes in elegant neighborhoods. The neighborhoods and homes selected are truly unique and are often rich with history, with each elegant home possessing an interesting story.

Guests are invited to browse dining rooms, walk through living rooms, and marvel at exquisite kitchens while tasting culinary delights and cocktails prepared in each home by chefs from the area’s top restaurants. To add to the experience, Tour de Cuisine also includes art for sale, jewelry, and chocolate samplings. In 2012, organizers added a beer garden.

For Do-It-Yourselfers, foodies, and architecture and interior design enthusiasts, this unique event is HGTV, Food Network, and Architectural Digest rolled into one.

Steak on crostini appetizers prepared by Norfolk Chop House. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Prosecco cocktail served by Voilà Cuisine Internationale. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Art by Duke (Penny C. Duke) displayed and for sale. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Tiffanie Howerlin pours a cold one. Beer Garden sponsored by Hoffman Beverage and Mermaid Winery. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Historic Freemason District

This year, Tour de Cuisine featured six spectacular homes and a luxurious Bed & Breakfast in the Freemason neighborhood of downtown Norfolk. Declared by the federal government as one of the first historic districts in Virginia, the beautiful District contains the majority of pre-Civil War structures remaining in Norfolk, and gives visitors a rare glimpse into 19th century life as they stroll the cobble-stone streets passing galleries, restaurants and coffee shops. All against the backdrop of the Elizabeth River.

Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Space Design Group proprietors opened their doors for the Tour. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Savory treats by Handsome Biscuit. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Considered one of Hampton Roads’ “best kept secrets,” The Freemason Inn and Breakfast at 411 West York Street was first stop for Tour guests. This three-story, 1897 vintage Victorian Inn just a few blocks from bustling downtown Norfolk boasts gas fireplaces in the antiques-laden guest quarters, and the Wishing Oak Bridal Suite, named for an ancient oak tree under which many a Norfolk knot was tied. Guests enjoyed hors d’oeuvres and cocktails provided by Voila! Cuisine Internationale on the outdoor terrace.

Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Freemason Inn Lesley A. Lewis is perfect Tour de Cuisine hostess. Pictured with Bill Cresenzo. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Beautiful Freemason Inn dining area. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Wishing Oak Bridal Suite. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Next stop: a Greek Revival home built in 1867 with paired ionic columns supporting the portico which is topped by a wooden balustrade. The interior of this home is graced with 12 foot ceilings, pocket windows, floor to ceiling pocket doors for privacy in the front “parlor” and exposed brick interior walls along with 7 fireplaces. The back yard features a Camellia tree that is believed to have preceded the home construction, and a 6,000 gallon Koi pond.

“Greek Revival” home. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

The “Front Parlor.” Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Norfolk Chop House chefs “at home” in spacious kitchen.” Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Visually stunning 6,000 gallon Koi pond. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Backyard ideal for entertaining. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Then on to The John Cary-Weston House (circa 1870), a national and Virginia Historic Landmark built by John Cary-Weston who served as a Confederate Army Colonel and member of the Great Bridge Canal Lumber Company. With land purchased in 1853, John Cary-Weston aspired to design the home in the high Victorian Italianate Second Empire style of architecture. At one time, the gardens and outbuildings occupied space that is now a city block. In the last decade, efforts have been made by the owners of this home to restore the structure to its former grandeur. The family has successfully located and corresponded with the Weston descendants.

The John Cary-Weston House. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

The home features 10 fireplaces and 12-feet ceilings. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Other homes included Kenmure – a home built in 1845 by William Wilson Lamb, the Mayor of Norfolk during the Civil War (Lamb named it Kenmure after his family’s ancestral home in Scotland); a historic home built circa 1890, and renovated “loft-style” in 2010-2012, featuring a third floor media room with cathedral ceiling going out to a rooftop deck; and the sole remaining single family home in McCullough Row which was built in the late 19th century and has been beautifully restored and updated.

“Kenmure” Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Standing in front of one of two interior open-string staircases. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

“Pineapple-tinis” served on home’s gorgeous dining table. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Exposed brick and ornate chandelier in one bedroom of “loft-style” home. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Kitchen is perfect for congregating. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Teri Baker, Tour de Cuisine Committee co-chair (far left) poses with staff of Bardo Edibles + Elixirs and The Public House. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

The beautifully restored and updated “McCullough Row” home. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Andrea’s La Bella Ghent served up delicious meatballs and pasta in the well-appointed kitchen. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

The “youngest” and the most contemporary home on the tour was built in 1992 by Lawson Construction for the Miller Oil family. This four story corner home has had three owners since the Millers, each making unique changes. The current owners have made the most extensive renovations, bringing it into the 21st century by removing the wall between the kitchen and dining area, and adding a raised bar-like countertop for an entertainment area.

Guests greeted with refreshing Mojitos at “Miller Oil Family” home courtesy of Press 626. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Spacious open-concept dining/kitchen area above living room. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Press 626 owners and staff happy to “serve” Tour guests. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Guests not shy to show off their bare feet for house tour. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

“Ooh… Aah” and Help

While the crowds came to “ooh and aah” at the magnificent homes, the beautiful furnishings, and the priceless works of art; and sipped wine and sampled beer while taking in the breathtaking views of the Elizabeth River at the Pagoda Garden, they also came to help raise money for Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters (CHKD).

CHKD was established in 1961 by the the King’s Daughters and is exclusively dedicated to meeting the unique medical and surgical needs of children, both inpatient and outpatient, throughout Virginia and northeastern North Carolina.

“CHKD is a ‘little people’ hospital,” said Mary Ellen Triplett, a retired Marine who has volunteered with the Larchmont Friends Circle of the King’s Daughters for over 10 years, and is a 2012-2013 member of the King’s Daughters Board of Directors. “Everyone should take a tour of the hospital to see how they really care for children when they are sick,” Triplett said. “The only way I can describe it is that CHKD takes care of little ones like a mother would take care of her own child.”

Since its inception, Tour de Cuisine has raised over $188,000 to benefit CHKD.

Mary Ellen Triplett (far right) with fellow King’s Daughters volunteers, Laurie Radford (left) and Denise Bashara (middle). Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Good friends, good times under the Pagoda. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

Cruise ship departure snapshot is perfect backdrop for ending to a perfect day. Photo by Rico Marcelo Photography

9th Annual Tour de Cuisine VIDEO produced by Hampton Roads Social

MORE PHOTOS by Rico Marcello Photography from the 2013 Tour de Cuisine can be seen HERE!

CLICK HERE to learn more about the King’s Daughters

SAVE THE DATE!! CLICK HERE for information about upcoming events

CLICK HERE to DONATE to the King’s Daughters

 

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