The Riordan Mansion is nestled in the pines of beautiful flagstaff , Arizona. The mansion is an example of the arts and crafts style which was popular in early 1900’s America. And more than that the arts and crafts style exemplified the life and times of the two brothers that built the mansion.
Timothy and Michael Riordan had the mansion built in 1904. They called on Charles Whittlesey, the famous Santa Fe railroad architect to design the home. If you have ever visited the grand canyon, you wiil recognize his work as he also designed the el tovar hotel.
The riordan mansion consisted of two homes connected by a common area, the house featured in door plumbing and electric lighting. Which were both luxury items at the time.
The Riordan Mansion was built for two families who ran a logging business called the Arizona Lumber and Timber Co. Michael and his family lived on one side while Timothy and his family lived on the other with both families sharing a common area in the middle. The house has over 13,000 square feet of living space.
Timothy and Michael Riordan had married the Metz sisters, Caroline and Elizabeth, who were first cousins of the Babbitt brothers, part of another prominent Flagstaff family. The Riordans built their mansion near downtown Flagstaff on the edge of what would become the Northern Arizona University campus. The mansion really was two homes for two families – separate 6,000-square-foot living areas for each family connected by a 1,000-square-foot common area known as the billiard room. Tim and Caroline had two daughters, and Mike and Elizabeth had six children.
The craftsman philosophy focused on simplicity, craftsmanship and the beauty found in nature. The riordan’s used many local materials in the construction of their home including Ponderosa pine slab siding and volcanic rock that is found locally in the flagstaff area.
Take the tour of the mansion and learn how the Riordan family was instrumental in the development of the town of flagstaff and the state of Arizona. As community leaders, the Riordans started a hospital, three Catholic churches, what became the Monte Vista Hotel, and nearby Lake Mary and helped in the development of Northern Arizona University and the Lowell Observatory.
The home has bee preserved with many of the original furnishings. Discover what it was like to live in a frontier town and what amenities were available at the turn of the century.
The guided tour costs $10 per person and takes about an hour. You’ll be able to walk through the East house and see the period furniture and then the guide will take you to the West side that is set up as a museum. Tours start on the hour. Reservations are suggested and are required for large groups.
409 W. Riordan road
Flagstaff, Arizona. 86001