• In the show’s introduction, the ceiling of the Rosecliff Ballroom takes center stage as the Jules Allard-designed mural of an open sky is superimposed as part of the architecturally themed opening credits.
• The Elms kitchen appears repeatedly in this episode. Also, The Elms pantry is shot from a low angle, offering an interesting view of the space.
Douglas Sills as the Russells' chef, Monsieur Baudin. Photograph by Alison Cohen Rosa/HBO
• While hosting a dinner for Anne and Patrick Morris, Bertha Russell is asked why she did not use Richard Morris Hunt to design her New York mansion. Hunt, who died in Newport in 1895, designed The Breakers and Marble House as well as Biltmore in Ashville, N.C., and the Vanderbilt Mausoleum on Staten Island. He was also well known for a number of New York projects.
• After dinner, Mrs. Russell leads a tour through her ballroom. This is really the Music Room at The Breakers, a space we will see in more detail during later episodes.
• Mr. Russell and Mr. Morris retire to discuss business over a game of billiards in the Russell mansion. The scene was filmed in the Billiard Room of The Breakers using the original billiard table, on which a new layer of felt was placed to protect the surface. HBO worked closely with our Collections and Conservation Teams to protect the historic surfaces and objects in our houses during filming of “The Gilded Age.”
• Mrs. Russell’s bedroom is a tribute to Alva Vanderbilt’s room in Marble House, according to “The Gilded Age” production designer Bob Shaw.
Carrie Coon as Bertha Russell. Photograph by Alison Cohen Rosa/HBO