Grace Kelly’s childhood home fully restored, won’t be museum
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The Philadelphia home where Grace Kelly grew up has been restored to its original glory.
Toby Boshak, executive director of the Princess Grace Foundation-USA, tells NBC’s “Today” that the six-bedroom, 2.5-story Colonial home will be used occasionally by Kelly’s son Prince Albert II and his family.
It will also house offices for the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation and host events for the Princess Grace Foundation-USA, which provides scholarships to emerging talent in theater, dance and film.
Kelly, an Oscar-winning actress, became Princess of Monaco after marrying Prince Rainier III in 1956. The couple announced their engagement at the house.
Prince Albert II bought the home in 2016 and renovated it to look like it did when his mother lived there.
The house was in rough condition when he bought it, but the former owners did leave intact a linen closet door that is marked with the heights of all the Kelly children over the years, Prince Albert II told “Today.”
An initial idea was to open the home as a museum, but in the end the family decided against that.
The home was built in 1935 by Grace Kelly’s father, John B. Kelly. He was a three-time Olympic gold medal-winning rower in the 1920s and later a prominent businessman active in Philadelphia politics.
Grace Kelly left Philadelphia at age 20 for Hollywood but remained adored by Philadelphians through the years. The city mourned after she died in 1982 from injuries she suffered in a car crash in France that involved her teenage daughter. She was 52.
Once asked about memories growing up in Philadelphia, Kelly recalled walking along a creek in Fairmount Park as her “greatest treat.”
Her childhood home made headlines in 2014 when its 81-year-old former owner pleaded no contest to animal cruelty charges for keeping cats and dogs in unsanitary conditions. Officials with the Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals seized 15 cats from the home and found the remains of several others. The owner had lived there since 1973.