wrought iron fence
Become king of the castle: The Washington home that lets you live out your medieval dream for $2,500-a-month
By Snejana Farberov
Hardwood floors, central heating and other tropes of modern living may be nice, but who of us hasn’t dreamed of dwelling like a 13th century duke, surrounded by rough-hewn stone, wrought iron finishes and turrets?
Those of us who still fantasize about King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table may now live out their medieval fantasies for the relatively modest price of $2,500 a month.
If you have a taste for the Dark Ages, but you happen to live in a country that was only settled in the 17th century, than the Gate Keeper’s Castle in Gardiner, Washington is the place for you.
The faux-medieval chateau is only one of the many unusual homes in the aptly named Troll Haven development sprawled out on 150 acres of land.
‘Designed and built from a dream,’ the home’s website proclaims, adding:
‘Looking upon the structure, flights of pure fantasy and imagination dazzle the mind. Dungeons, feastings, daring lovers, sieges, bards, mystery and wonder are grown when stepping into this magical world.
‘An age of bygone kings, magicians, giants, dwarfs, sorceresses, elves and trolls. Through the doors, chivalry is born and romance has its origins in this magical world.’
The extensive castle, whose architectural style could be described as medieval-chic, has five lavishly appointed bedrooms, whimsical detailing heavy on dragons and trolls, stained glass windows and vertiginous staircases.
The quirky home also comes with a four-car (or horse) garage and breathtaking views of Discovery Bay and the Strait of Juan de Fuca.
Like any medieval castle worth its name, the rental property comes with a dungeon, complete with some naughty features sure to make maidens blush.
The décor is heavy on swords, mace and shackles reminiscent of S&M paraphernalia which could be found throughout the underground space, including in the three bedrooms, Jacuzzi and steam shower.
History walk at Green Ridge Cemetery
By Margie Gentner
If you’re looking for something to do tomorrow, Saturday, October 6th, on a beautiful (albeit perhaps chilly) autumn day, please come out to the History Walk sponsored by the Kenosha History Center at Green Ridge Cemetery between 1 pm and 4 pm.
Tours depart every 15 minutes from the Seventh Avenue gate, each tour taking 45 to 60 minutes.
This year’s theme is “Great Women of Kenosha,” and they will be re-enacting five women buried at Green Ridge: a doctor, a missionary, a philanthropist, an eccentric, and a broken-hearted teenager.
That’s Some Key
How Do You Get a Key to Gramercy Park?
By ROBIN FINN
THERE are 383 aspirational keys in circulation in the Big City, each of them numbered and coded, all of them equipped to unlock any of four wrought-iron gates offering privileged access to undisturbed siestas or tranquil ambulation inside the tree-lined boundaries of Gramercy Park.
At age 181, the only truly private park in Manhattan is lovelier and more ornamental than ever; yes, the colorful Calder sculpture swaying blithely in the breeze inside the fence is “Janey Waney,” on indefinite loan from the Calder Foundation.
Dogs may stare through the bars as mournfully as they like, but not even having a key-holder for a master will get them in.
A commemorative fountain and plaque dedicated to Samuel B. Ruggles, who in 1831 founded Gramercy Park.
Alexander Rower, a grandson of Mr. Calder, lives on Gramercy Park, as does Samuel G. White, whose great-grandfather was Stanford White, and who has taken on an advisory role in a major redesign of its landscaping. Both are key-holders who, validated by an impressive heritage, are exerting a significant influence on Gramercy Park’s 21st-century profile. Because Gramercy is fenced, not walled in, the Calder and the rest of the evolving interior scenery are visible in all seasons to passers-by and the legions of dog-walkers who daily patrol the perimeter.
Parkside residents rationalize that their communal front yard is privatized for its own protection. Besides, they, not the city it enhances, have footed its bills for nearly two centuries. Any of the 39 buildings on the park that fails to pay the yearly assessment fee of $7,500 per lot, which grants it two keys — fees and keys multiply accordingly for buildings on multiple lots — will have its key privileges rescinded. The penalty is so painful that it has never had to be applied.
For connection-challenged mortals, though, the park is increasingly problematic to appreciate from within, particularly now that Arthur W. and William Lie Zeckendorf, and Robert A. M. Stern, the architect of their 15 Central Park West project, are recalibrating property values in a stratospheric direction by bringing the neighborhood its first-ever $42 million duplex penthouse, at 18 Gramercy Park South, formerly a Salvation Army residence for single women.
The unique housewarming gift the Zeckendorfs decided to bestow on the buyer-who-has-everything types purchasing there is none other than a small metallic item they might not already own: a personal key to the park.
to be continued
High Times in the Holy City
A bucket list of Southern charm from Charleston
By Craig Donofrio
Salty breezes twirl Spanish moss and steal perfume from Confederate jasmine hedges that flank a cobblestone alley. Interspersed throughout the hedges are ornate wrought iron gates, coated with layers of shiny black paint, begging views of lavish gardens. A horse-drawn carriage plods by pastel-colored homes and then along the palm-lined harbor. Just around the corner, antebellum mansions tower over The Battery and enthrall all eyes that pass.
In the warm morning sun, the streets are swept and blue slate sidewalks washed. Boutique shops open for Saturday business along King Street while art galleries on Broad Street raise their blinds. Meanwhile, a few dazed stragglers, many of who motored past last call or sipped “apres-bar” Bourbon on a private piazza, will brave the walk of shame – a hasty morning retreat to avoid impending daylight and anyone that could identify last night’s crumpled wardrobe.
That’s a small glimpse into the unique daily rhythm and lifestyle dichotomy that draws more than 4 million people annually to the charming, restaurant-rich city of Charleston, S.C.
Acreage antebellum-style property offered in Richmond
By Lisa Zapalac
Encompassing more than 6 acres in Richmond’s Sovereign Shores with proximity to Sugar Land, the property has highlights that include staircases, volume ceilings, verandas, heirloom trees, rose gardens and a guesthouse.
Wrought-iron gates and stucco pylons distinguish the entrance of the estate, which has manicured grounds. A beautiful veranda encircles the home, and the rear patio is highlighted by two staircases, and views of the guesthouse and scenic surrounds.
With more than 6,900 square feet, the three-story home opens to a double-height foyer. A memorable first impression, the foyer features one of three staircases and winds to an open landing beneath a plaster dome.
Polished black and white marble tiles and an artist’s mural are among the many unique points of interest in this home. The floors are 100-year-old heart-of-pine and are throughout the house.
The formal living room flanks the reception hall and has an Enkeboll fireplace, deep crown molding, and tall windows and paneled pocket doors that can separate the living room from the reception hall. Also bordering the reception hall is the formal dining room showcasing ornamental plaster, tall French doors to the veranda, and as in the living room, 100-year-old heart-of-pine floors.
A slab-marble backsplash and surface, a wine chiller, air bubble glass cabinet doors and a pressed-tin ceiling highlight the butler’s pantry.
The kitchen is an ideal entertaining area, with its pressed-tin ceiling, brick wall and stove surround, and furniture-quality cabinetry.
The breakfast room has a brick fireplace, carved mantel and raised hearth, a beamed ceiling and tall windows capturing views of the grounds.
Accessible via a second-floor landing, the study/library offers polished paneling, a built-in desk, a glass door to the second-floor gallery and an iron staircase to the library sitting area above.
Elegant and serene, the master suite features a recessed ceiling, French doors to the gallery, and a double fireplace with carved mantel and raised hearth. The master bath shares the double fireplace and features a central jetted tub, furniture-quality millwork and cabinetry, marble floors and beveled slab-marble surfaces, and a barrel-vaulted ceiling. A home office connects to the master suite and could serve as an exercise or hobby room.
A home theater is over the garage, and the guesthouse includes a living area, open kitchen and bedroom.
The property, at 21 Sovereign Circle, includes three buildings and more than 10,000 square feet.