- I visited the Warner Bros. Studio in Burbank, California, on the first day of its special holiday-themed “Gilmore Girls” tour.
- The tour included a look at some of the most iconic locations from the show, including Lorelai Gilmore’s house, Luke’s Diner, and the gazebo located in the middle of Stars Hollow.
- While there, I also enjoyed a festive “Lunch With Lorelai,” which consisted of oven-roasted turkey breast and mashed potatoes.
- I even got the chance to speak with Scott Patterson, who played Luke Danes on the show.
- The “Gilmore Girls” holiday tour runs until January 5, 2020. You can purchase tickets on the Warner Bros. Studio Tour website, and prices start at $US59 for children and $US69 for adults.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
When I got to the Warner Bros. Studio lot, I felt eager to board the tram that would transport us to Stars Hollow, Connecticut.
When I first arrived at the Warner Bros. Studio lot in Burbank, California, there was a long line of people who had bought tickets for the special “Gilmore Girls” holiday tour.
My tour was set for 2 p.m., and there were about 10 people in my group. As we boarded the tram that would take us to the set of “Gilmore Girls,” we all talked about what the experience would be like. Everyone in my group was a huge fan of the show and could not be happier that a holiday-themed tour was taking place almost 20 years after the show premiered.
Along the way, our tour guide mentioned that “Shameless,” “The Real,” and “The Ellen Degeneres Show” were just a few of the other shows that currently film on the lot.
The tram dropped us off at the entrance of Stars Hollow, and I made my way to a colourful sign that provided directions.
I noticed the colourful sign from a distance and immediately headed straight for it. Our tour guide explained to us that we were free to roam the lot and that we could take a tram back to the pickup area whenever we liked.
The sign directed guests to iconic spots from the show, including Luke’s Diner, the town square, and Lorelai Gilmore’s house.
Since we were free to roam on our own, I decided to head to the town square first. It seemed like a lot of people were also choosing to walk in that direction.
The first house I saw as I was walking toward the town square was Sookie St. James’ home, which was decked out for the holidays.
Fans of the show will remember Sookie St. James (played by Melissa McCarthy) as Lorelai Gilmore’s (played by Lauren Graham) best friend and an excellent chef. Her house, which she shared with her husband Jackson and their two kids, was always known for its laughs and good food.
As I walked by, I noticed that the Gilmore house set was directly attached to Sookie’s house, which is something you wouldn’t guess from the show.
As I continued walking, I noticed the iconic gazebo right in the middle of the town square. Some of the most memorable moments from “Gilmore Girls” were filmed here.
The gazebo was decorated with festive garland and traditional nutcrackers, but the set as a whole needed some snow in order to make it really feel like Stars Hollow during Christmas.
I stopped to capture the perfect “Gilmore Girls” moment on the steps of the gazebo.
The gazebo was one photo opportunity I couldn’t miss.
Each building on the lot had a sign in front of it with a description and some fun facts about the location.
I found it helpful to be able to read about each location.
The description in front of the gazebo said it was “one of the most filmed locations on the studio lot.”
Next up, I stopped by Mrs. Kim’s antique shop.
Mrs. Kim (played by Emily Kuroda) was the strict mother of Rory Gilmore’s (played by Alexis Bledel) best friend, Lane Kim (played by Keiko Agena).
According to the description, Mrs. Kim’s shop also appeared in an episode of “Friends” (“The One With the Prom Video”), as well as the NBC series “The West Wing.”
I stepped inside Mrs. Kim’s home to find Scott Patterson, who played Luke Danes on the show, waiting to speak my group.
My group was guided inside of Mrs. Kim’s house for a surprise Q&A with Scott Patterson, who played Luke Danes on the show. Fans planning to visit the set on a future date shouldn’t expect to see Patterson, as it was the only day he would be making an appearance.
When asked in what ways Patterson felt like he was similar or different from his character Luke, he replied, ” “I think we’re similar in that we’re kind of old-school guys and we’re loyal people, we love fiercely.”
“We’re not anything alike in terms of how much fun I like to have, he’s a very uptight guy,” Patterson added. “I enjoyed playing him because he was so specific. I love characters that are a little tight because they evoke so much mystery.”
Patterson made his way to the gazebo after our discussion to answer more questions from fans.
Patterson was escorted out of the house and to the gazebo, where many excited fans screamed at the sight of him.
“I love surprising people! Thank you to all the fans attending the ‘Gilmore Girls’ holiday event yesterday on the Warner Bros. Studio Tour of the Stars Hollow set,” Scott wrote in a Facebook post the following day. “Seeing you all is such a joy to me. Much love and Happy Holidays!”
As I continued to explore the town, I couldn’t help but feel as though I had actually been transported to the real Stars Hollow.
I felt like I was actually following in the footsteps of Rory and Lorelai Gilmore. On television, all of these iconic locations appear to be more spread out, but in reality, they’re just steps away from each other.
The town felt very real and included a number or recognisable locations, like the church …
The church appeared smaller in person.
… Doose’s Market …
Doose’s Market is the only grocery store in Stars Hollow, and it witnessed its fair share of dramatic moments.
… and the infamous Luke’s Diner.
Warner Bros. mentioned that the Luke’s Diner photo opportunity was a new addition to the tour. While fans were only allowed to take photos of the exterior, it was still an ideal setting for a dose of nostalgia.
Fans channeled Rory and Lorelai Gilmore in themed outfits.
A mother and daughter standing in line to take a picture in front of Luke’s Diner donned Rory and Lorelai Gilmore-inspired outfits.
I stopped to take a picture in front of the Stars Hollow sign.
Fans of “Gilmore Girls” will instantly recognise the blue-and-white Stars Hollow sign.
Although the lot did have some holiday props, I would have liked to see more snow in the area since it was a holiday tour.
The “snow woman” that Rory and Lorelai built for the Stars Hollow snowman contest was front and centre.
Visitors could see the entrance of Stars Hollow High School up close.
Rory Gilmore attended Stars Hollow High School with Lane before leaving for Chilton.
As an added bonus, the tour also featured the signature couch and fountain from “Friends.”
The “Friends” couch was not plush like I expected it to be.
I circled around to the front of the lot and saw people standing in line for “Lunch With Lorelai.”
To my surprise, “Lunch with Lorelai” didn’t actually take place in Lorelai Gilmore’s home.
I made my way to the back of the line, which was really long and extended past the front of the fence.
The “Lunch With Lorelai” menu featured a variety of festive options.
The menu offered seasonal items like oven-roasted turkey breast with mashed potatoes and brussels sprouts, and grilled flank steak with roasted red potatoes and green beans. Other options included chicken tenders, pizza, and french fries – some of Lorelai and Rory’s favourites.
I was expecting the interior of the home to mimic Lorelai’s living room, but that was not the case.
I waited in line for about 15 minutes before I got to the register to order my food.
Though the food wasn’t prepared by Sookie herself, it was still warm and tasty.
I ordered the oven-roasted turkey breast since I was in the mood for a holiday lunch. The plate came with turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, and brussels sprouts.
Overall, the meal was delicious. The brussels sprouts seemed to be steamed instead of roasted as the description said, but they were still tasty. The gravy was by far my favourite part, adding loads of flavour to the mashed potatoes I ordered.
After I finished my meal, I visited Lorelai’s house, which was my favourite stop on the tour.
After I finished my meal, I walked back toward the front entrance of the lot and made my way to some of the other locations I didn’t get to see yet.
Lorelai’s house, which doubled as the gift shop, was next up on the list. It was decked out in colourful Christmas lights.
The Gilmore mailbox was on display outside of the residence.
The mailbox was filled with Rory’s acceptance letters from Yale, Harvard, and Princeton University.
Costumes from the show were on display inside the Gilmore home.
When I first stepped into Lorelai’s home, I noticed the original costumes that Rory and Lorelai wore were on display. There was a line to view the rest of the house, which takes you through Rory’s bedroom and the living room.
As soon as you walk into the house, you’re standing in Rory’s bedroom.
Rory’s bedroom looked exactly like what I remembered from the show, and was decorated with props, including her laptop and pajamas.
Rory’s dresser was covered in books, and the mirror featured a Yale flag.
Rory was a big bookworm in the show, so it felt fitting that her dresser was stacked with her favourite books.
The TV inside Rory’s room was playing an episode of “Gilmore Girls.”
I enjoyed how guests could watch episodes of “Gilmore Girls” while they roamed through the house.
The living room was decked out in holiday decor and included a Christmas tree.
Lorelai’s living room matched the exact setup that they had on the show.
I noticed a photo of Luke on one of the tables in the living room.
The photo was a sweet nod to Luke’s relationship with Lorelai and Rory on the show.
Other decorations inside the house included snow globes and photos of Rory and Lorelai.
I personally loved all the small touches in the home that made the set feel more realistic.
Luke’s clothing was also on display in Lorelai’s house.
Luke’s signature blue baseball cap made an appearance.
I continued past the living room to the gift shop.
The gift shop located inside Lorelai’s home sold exclusive “Gilmore Girls” merchandise like magnets, mugs, clothing, and more.
Lorelai’s Jeep was another prop that was on display directly outside her home.
By the time I walked out of Lorelai’s house, it was dark outside and the lights were finally on.
I noticed Lorelai’s 2000 Jeep Wrangler parked outside of her home.
I saw people carrying Luke’s Diner coffee cups, and decided I needed one of my own.
The stand right outside of Lorelai’s house sold items like hot cocoa, coffee, Pop-Tarts, and cookies.
I opted for the hot cocoa and dragonfly shortbread cookie.
The hot cocoa felt like a perfect addition to the holiday-themed experience.
I sipped my hot cocoa outside of the Independence Inn, which featured a sign that said: “I smell snow.”
“I smell snow” was one of Lorelai’s most iconic quotes from the show.
The building was supposed to represent the potting shed that Lorelai and Rory lived in behind the Inn while Lorelai was working as a maid.
I took advantage of the photo ops and snapped a few holiday pictures.
A sleigh in front of the shed was lit up and decorated with holiday decor. I stood in a decent line to get this photo.
Once I saw everything there was to see in Stars Hollow, I stood in line for the tram to pick me back up from the entrance of the lot.
A tram came to pick people up every 10 minutes. TV screens playing on the ride back shared a little history about the Warner Bros. Studio lot.
In the end, the holiday tour was a magical experience that will make any “Gilmore Girls” fan feel nostalgic.
Visiting iconic locations like Luke’s Diner and Lorelai’s home made me feel nostalgic, and I want to rewatch the series right away.
The “Gilmore Girls” holiday tour runs from December 21, 2019, to January 5, 2020. You can purchase tickets for the tour on the Warner Bros. website, and prices start at $US59 for children and $US69 for adults.