11 December 2013

It's a Dream Come True....

It's a Dream Come True....Castles Everywhere

  1. 1.
    a large building or group of buildings fortified against attack with thick walls, battlements, towers, and in many cases a moat.

Who knew Colorado had so many castles? Certainly not me.

I've mentioned before, when Belle was little all she wanted to be was Cinderella. She had the entire Golden Book of Cinderella memorized word for word before the age of three. Honest. That girl can memorize. The joys of dyslexia.   She wore out three Cinderella costumes before the age of eight and her favorite saying was "It's a dream come true."


And every little girl wants to live in a castle.
They're cool.

Besides, the plethora of reality shows would not exist if we didn't love peering into other people's lives. Especially the lives of people who are wealthier and more important/famous than we are.   (Although wealth and importance are relative and usually not what Reality TV would like us to believe.)

So back in October I went to a wedding in a castle. In Colorado.
Dunafon Castle.
It was built as a private home but it does have a moat so it is fortified and truly qualifies as a real castle.
Here are a few pics from that visit- it was gorgeous:

A photo from their website

 This castle even has gargoyles!

The moat and a gazebo- so beautiful.

Stone walls, arched windows, what's not to love? 

Then  a week later I went to Bishop Castle. It was also built as a private home and has the beginnings of a moat and truly qualifies as a castle in progress. It is also the largest ONE MAN project around. And it is amazing...although in a totally different way than Dunafon Castle.
And here are some pics from that visit:

 Amazing, huh? One man built this.
By himself.

 Ironwork walkways connecting the turrets.

It even has a fire breathing dragon

And last week I went to Miramont Castle in Manitou Springs.   This was also built as a private home but was never "fortified" so I think it might be considered a castle-wanna-be. But still it is a beautiful and large historical building.

Miramont Castle.
(Translates to "Look at the mountain" in English)

The rooms were interesting and it made me sad to realize you just don't see that quality of woodworking anymore. Lovely details were everywhere.
The period furniture had details that we can only dream of, never to be found at Ikea or Pier One.

Beautiful Moorish windows.
Fr. Jean Baptiste Francolon, the builder, was 
all over the place when it came to design inspiration.

Me and my friend, Diana, in front of one of the many
beautifully decorated trees. 
It was her idea to go.
Many of the rooms had more than four sides-
this one had eight. 
Again, all over the place in design inspiration.

But the most interesting part of the castle to me was the servant's quarters.
They were on the fourth floor and were tiny. The ceiling height was probably 5 1/2 feet and the door jambs were even lower.  I'm only 5'3" and could not have walked through a door without ducking.

Also, there was no heat. None. I know heat rises but I can assure you that those rooms were not warm  on the cold day that I visited.The castle was originally built with steam heat but there wasn't a radiator in sight in the servant's quarters .
Bottom line? It must have really sucked to be a servant.

Don't be fooled.
That's a child size bed in there. 
This is a tiny room and it was the largest of the 
servant's rooms we saw.

And then because three castles in two months got me to thinking, I started checking to see what other castles there are in Colorado.

Turns out there was another one right in Colorado Springs. Glen Eyrie. I drove by but wasn't able to stay for the inside tour.  But honey! It looks like a real castle in every sense of the word. Can't wait to go back.

And when I took this there were wild turkeys and deer
roaming around behind me.

And for what looks to be the best castle of them all....¡¡Mira!!
Ice castles!


Tickets are already purchased for the Breckenridge Ice Castle.

Doesn't this look amazing??

I cannot wait.  Except I have to.   We won't be able to get there until after January 1.

But that's okay. Something to look forward to.

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