My dear friend Andy loves antiques and old houses. So when she came back to the area for her birthday, we stayed at the Vrooman Mansion Bed and Breakfast, in Bloomington, Illinois.

We had a wonderful time relaxing, catching up, and enjoying this wonderful home. Being an architecture nerd, and old house lover as well, I brought my camera along.

Photo of the Vrooman Mansion, an historic brick home.

I’ve been inside the house a few times, but the last time was many years ago. Back in 2018, Kim and I visited the Mansion’s carriage house on the Old House Society’s Annual Home Tour. Unfortunately, the main house was not part of the tour.

The Vrooman Mansion is in the Dimmitt’s Grove neighborhood which is filled with some really great old houses. The original house was built in 1869 in the Italianate style, and several rooms still have the arch top windows from the original design. The home was remodeled over the years, and transformed into a more Romanesque style. It’s interesting, and quite different from the much heavier Richardsonian Romanesque style.

This post only begins to scratch the surface of this beautiful old house. Even though I plan on doing a few more posts, there are rooms and details that won’t be included, like many of the guest bedrooms. Be sure to check out the Vrooman Mansion Bed and Breakfast website. They have lots of information on the history of the Scott and Vrooman families, the house, and even a really cool 3D virtual walkthrough.

Vrooman Mansion Foyer

The Foyer was one of the most important spaces on the main floor, and it was certainly built to impress. The foyer functioned as a waiting room. It was a place for visitors to wait, and then to be received by the family. (Function-wise, it reminded me of the foyer of the Robie House, where visitors waited to be greeted. But the two rooms couldn’t look more different style-wise.)

Photo of the foyer of the historic Vrooman Mansion.

In the image below, the Parlor is to the left, the Music Room is straight ahead through the pocket doors, and the inglenook and stairs are to the right.

Photo of the foyer of the historic Vrooman Mansion looking towards the Music Room.

This stairway is just fabulous. The inglenook is tucked under the landing.

Photo of the interior of the Vrooman Mansion with dark stairs, fireplace, and large stained glass windows.

Photo of the inglenook fireplace inside the historic Vrooman Mansion.

Photo of black stained stairway and foyer of the Vrooman Mansion.

Parlor & Music Room

These two rooms are located right off the main entry foyer, and would have been the place to entertain guests. The Parlor is such a bright contrast to the darkness of the Foyer. We were told the light bulbs are original Edison bulbs. The Parlor’s hand painted ceiling has been restored.

Photo of the bay window in the Parlor of the Vrooman Mansion.

The Music Room, with bay window, was part of the original house.

Photo of the Music Room with large windows and grand piano in the Vrooman Mansion.

The Safe Room & Bath

This room’s name has a completely different meaning than one in a modern home. It’s literally the room with a safe. It’s built into the wall next to the fireplace.

Photo of red brick fireplace in the Vrooman Mansion.

An original bathroom is located off the Safe Room.

Photo of vintage bathroom in the Vrooman Mansion

Dining Room

We enjoyed a delicious breakfast in the dining room, while the player piano in the Music Room provided background music. The fireplace really caught my attention with all the different sizes and shapes of bricks.

Photo of brick fireplace in the Vrooman Mansion.

The coffered ceiling was gorgeous. You don’t see red ceilings very often. The windows look out onto the covered side porch.

Photo or red ceiling with dark wood coffering, and stained glass windows in the Vrooman Mansion.

The ornate built in buffet with bottle bottom glass doors.

Photo of black stained wood built in buffet in the Vrooman Mansion.

Butler’s Pantry

Now this is a butler’s pantry! It has the original copper sink in from of the window.

Photo of wood cabinets in the Vrooman Mansion butler's pantry.


The Library is located between, and connects, the Dining Room and Music Room. It certainly checks off all my boxes for a library.

Photo of bookcases with glass doors in the library of the Vrooman Mansion.

It also looks out onto the covered side porch which faces west. The late afternoon sun really shows off these stained glass transom windows.

Photo of three stained glass windows in the Library of the Vrooman Mansion.


A lift was installed to carry the traveling trunks to the upper floors, rather than lugging them through the house. Very clever!

Photo of the luggage lift hoist way inside the Vrooman Mansion.

Second Floor Sitting Area

At the top of the stairway is another library and sitting area. This is probably my favorite place in the house.

Photo of the second floor landing of the Vrooman Mansion.

To give an idea of scale, the stained glass windows are 8′ tall. Wowza.

Photo of the second floor sitting area, with large stained glass windows, in the Vrooman Mansion.

Photo of large stained glass windows, dark wooden handrails and hanging light in the stairway of the Vrooman Mansion.

Photo of stained glass Palladian window in the stairway of the Vrooman Mansion.

Photo of builtin bookcases with glass front doors in the Vrooman Mansion.

Photo of builtin bench and bookcase in the second floor library of the Vrooman Mansion.

Julia Vrooman Suite

We stayed in Julia’s lovely bedroom. With windows on both the west and south side, it is a bright room filled with sunshine. Unfortunately, I only took pictures of the details and not the entire room. Der. Luckily, you can view the room here on their site.

I noticed these interesting light fixtures in several places through the house. One is gas and the other is electric.

Photo of vintage wallpaper and light fixture in the Vrooman Mansion.

Imagine sitting next to this fireplace on a cold winter day. Cat (or dog) and book would be required. I thought that the tiles were an interesting size – like miniature subway tile.

Photo of detailed fireplace surround with white columns and mantel in the Vrooman Mansion.

Carl Vrooman Suite

Mr. Vrooman’s sitting room was equally bright and light, but with a simple, masculine feel. His original scroll top writing desk sits in the corner.

Photo of four windows with diamond panes in the study of the Vrooman Mansion.

I can’t recommend staying at the Vrooman Mansion strongly enough. Especially if you like old houses. I regret that we only spent one night here, but I just saw they have a Murder Mystery package. Hmmmm.

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Photo collage of stained glass window in the Vrooman Mansion.


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  1. I have been in the Vrooman mansion several times. A Christmas tour, 2 Tea Ladies presentations, a retirement party and a few times before it was beautifully restored. Thanks for the beautiful pictures and descriptions.

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