“The Suffolk County Vanderbilt Museum — a unique combination of mansion, marine and natural history museum, planetarium and park — is dedicated to the education and enjoyment of the people of Long Island and beyond. This mission shall be achieved through the thoughtful preservation, interpretation and enhancement of the Eagle’s Nest estate as an informal educational facility. Many exhibition and program themes focus upon Long Island’s Gold Coast Era. Programs also concentrate on William K. Vanderbilt II’s desire that his marine, natural history, and ethnographic collections promote appreciation and understanding of the marvelous diversity of life, other cultures, and scientific knowledge. Planetarium programming, more specifically, focuses on scientific knowledge and seeks to capture Mr. Vanderbilt’s sense of adventure and exploration through state-of-the-art entertainment.”
At the Suffolk County Vanderbilt Museum, we recognize that many of our visitors have special needs, and we strive to accommodate them. The Museum is able to transport individuals with limited mobility in its golf cart, tram, or mini-van. Architectural barriers inherent in the historic construction of the estate – especially the cobblestone roadways, the lack of an elevator in the mansion, and other stairways on the grounds – make it a challenge for some individuals to navigate the property safely.
The Museum recently reconstructed the public restrooms in the parking area to comply with ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) regulations. The renovated Planetarium theater includes companion seats next to each of the 5 wheelchair areas. In addition, the public restrooms in the Planetarium are handicapped–accessible.
Visitors who are unable to use stairs or who have limited mobility can watch a video tour in the Lancaster Room of the Mansion. The video tour includes the Vanderbilt family’s private living quarters in the Mansion and the exhibits in the Marine Museum, Habitat, and Stoll Wing.