The house belonged to Richard Boyle, 4th Earl of Cork and also known as Lord Burlington, and he designed it in 1729, with garden design input from William Kent. Boyle's daughter Charlotte married William Cavendish, 4th Duke of Devonshire, and the house and gardens passed to that family after her early death.
The octagonal domed Palladian villa is inspired by the Villa Rotonda at Vicenza and at the same time a fine example of 18th-century architecture, with its colonnaded portico on the upper storey, the frescoed ceilings, the velvet rooms and the stone rooms. There is also a superb collection of paintings and furnishings.
The gateway was originally designed by Inigo Jones in 1621 and built at Chiswick House in 1738.
The Italianate Gardens are a good example of the English Landscape School and they contain a fair number of interesting features: temples, statues, obelisks, exedra, sphinx, amphitheatre, cascade and wilderness.
The House and 26 hsa Gardens are in the care of English Heritage. The garden has been a public park since 1929.