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Miniatures at the House on the Rock

The House on the Rock Resort near Madison, Wisconsin gives miniature and dollhouse lovers a unique way to enjoy both a top rated resort and miniatures and dollhouses galore. At the House on the Rock, visitors will find lodging, spa, restaurant, golf and a roomful of dollhouses and a another with all the trimmings of a miniature circus. The House on the Rock is the creation of Alex Jordan, a reclusive and wealthy individual with an interest in architecture and electronics. The original Japanese House built originally as a wilderness retreat in the style of Frank Lloyd Wright, is perched on the Deer Shelter Rock, in a forest area in Wisconsin.

After completing the original house over the next several decades, Jordan added other buildings such as the Mill House, the Gate House, streets, and gardens. His interest in electronics resulted in varied collections and displays such a display of automatic music machines, nautical exhibits, and miniatures. The story goes that Alex Jordan, while a reclusive individual, decided to open his collections and buildings to the public in 1959 because the revenue from tours allowed him to continue his development of the site. The site was sold by Jordan in 1988 and the complex was continued under the new owner who added to the exhibits with a Spirit of Aviation exhibit and a Transportation Building. Some of the items in the collections are antiques while others are reproductions.

Now a popular resort, the House on the Rock features an entertainment complex including the Streets of Yesterday with a depiction of an middle America now from the twentieth century, the Heritage of the Sea which houses nautical exhibits including a 200 foot wooden sculpture of an imaginary sea creature, the Music of Yesterday exhibit, swimming pools, restaurants, golf course, and an indoor carousel. Two of the most popular exhibits are the Doll House Room and the Circus Room. Billed as one of the largest collection of dollhouses in the world, the miniature homes have been meticulously crafted and include examples of many of the popular architectural styles. There are over 200 dollhouses within the collection and each doll house is fully decorated and furnished. There are even dollhouses suspended from the air to a beautiful backdrop of stained glass windows. The Circus Room located in the Mill House includes a background of ever playing circus music emanating from the lilliputian 40 piece band and a 80 piece orchestra, a miniature pyramid of elephants, and a full size circus wagon. Additional collections include a doll exhibit and a toy collection. Most of the exhibits are decorated for Christmas during the holiday season including visits with St. Nick. For more information on the House on the Rock and its exhibits visit

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