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Joe Biden Chose an Amazing Bay Area Spot to Meet Xi Jinping. Have You Been There?

When American President Joe Biden meets with Chinese President Xi Jinping for the APEC Summit today, they’ll be doing so in an amazing San Francisco Bay Area place.

Biden and his team didn’t choose a boring hotel ballroom or civic building for the meeting. Instead, they chose one of the most amazing and storied landmarks in the Bay Area. Their meeting place is beautiful, secluded, and perfectly reflective of America’s history and culture.

Here’s where they chose to meet.

Approach to the main house, with a gardener performing maintenance tasks, at Filoli, a preserved country house, formal garden and estate operated by the National Trust for Historic Preservation in Woodside, California, June 23, 2017.

A Stunning Historical Home

Joe Biden and Xi Jinping will have their historic summit in an equally historic place. They will be meeting at Filoli, a historic home and garden in Woodside, California, about 20 minutes south of San Francisco.

Filoli is an absolutely stunning place. The home of a wealthy San Francisco businessman during the 19th century, it features a California Eclectic architectural style. That means, in true California form, the architects borrowed pieces of other things they liked and mushed them all together into a structure!

Sunken garden and lawn at Filoli, a preserved country house, formal garden and estate operated by the National Trust for Historic Preservation in Woodside, California, June 23, 2017.

The gardens of Filoli are one of the most amazing gardens in the world. They include formal English gardens, an antique swimming pool, flower gardens, spice gardens, and much else.

It’s an exciting and beautiful reflection of America’s past and present. If you’re going to showcase American history and physical beauty in one spot, Filoli is a wonderful place to do it. That’s likely why Biden and his team chose it as the meeting spot for the summit.

Main house, built in a California Eclectic architectural style

Secluded and Secure

There’s some other reasons as well. Filoli is secluded and the house itself is surrounded by private grounds. That likely makes it easier to secure.

It’s also in close proximity to Moffett Field, a military air station that’s often used to get dignitaries in and out of the Bay Area without traveling through San Francisco International Airport.

When we see photos of this historic meeting, expect to see Filoli and its grounds. We might see Joe Biden and Xi Jinping sitting in a Victorian-era room that’s been decorated to the nines, or perhaps strolling around the beautiful grounds.

Terrace of the main house at Filoli, a preserved country house, formal garden and estate operated by the National Trust for Historic Preservation in Woodside, California, June 23, 2017.

You should also be aware that a meeting of this nature is likely to cause a lot of traffic delays and disruptions in the Filoli area. If you need to travel anywhere near Woodside today, you should probably put off your plans!

Visiting Filoli

Of course, you can’t go and visit Filoli during the meeting. But any other time, it’s an amazing place to go for a weekend trip. It’s so close to Silicon Valley or you can easily drive over there and stay for a few hours, but you’ll feel transported to a totally different place and time.

As an aside, Filoli also has an excellent snack bar staffed by volunteers. You can grab a coffee and a snack on your future visit. Kudos to Joe Biden and his team for choosing a place that’s not only beautiful but also reflects American culture.

We expect to see some amazing photos come out of this historic meeting!

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Thomas Smith

Thomas Smith is a food and travel photographer and writer based in the San Francisco Bay Area. His photographic work routinely appears in publications including Food and Wine, Conde Nast Traveler, and the New York Times and his writing appears in IEEE Spectrum, SFGate, the Bold Italic and more. Smith holds a degree in Cognitive Science (Neuroscience) and Anthropology from the Johns Hopkins University.

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