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4 rms, moat vu
You can buy your own castle.
July 15, 2005: 2:07 PM EDT
By Les Christie, CNN/Money staff writer
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NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - Sometimes a person's home really is a castle. All over the United States people have indulged their medieval musings by occupying crenellated constructions complete with cyclopean walls, moats, keeps, slot windows, and battlements; in other words -- castles.

Yes, there are a fair number of castles spread out across the nation; the Web site lists castles in some 46 states -- 50 in California alone.

Joanne Moon lived in a castle for 15 years in Georgia. "I just loved it," she says. The massive walls, the drawbridge, the turrets and towers, all contributed to the fantasy that her family was living back in the "Age of Chivalry."

The advantages of castle living are many:

  • Security: In the event of civil disorder you can face down a small army of thugs from the security of your walled and barred fortress.
  • Status: You can, literally, look down on your neighbors from the heights of your castle keep or corner towers.
  • Space: Entertaining a whole court of lords and ladies is possible in many of these sizable residences.

But what about all the negatives: The cold, drafty rooms, huge heating bills, hard dusty surfaces -- and all that loud wailing coming up from the dungeons. Those are, well, things of the past. These modern castles come complete with all the conveniences: state of the art electric wiring, heating and plumbing systems, whirlpool baths, even central air.

Castles touch something deep, atavistic, in some people. Colorado real estate agent Jeff Ordonez who represents "the Lion and the Rose," a castle for sale outside Denver, says the couple who built it were "so passionate about castles they lived in the basement as it was being built above them."

And when castle owners sell, according to several agents, it's usually because of changes in their lifestyle. Often, it's because the kids have left. Who needs 10,000 square feet of living space when all the kids have flown the coop?

And for those who reject American-made castles as mere reproductions, Europe is the place to go. There are thousands of authentic castles still in existence there and many are for sale. Click here for more information.

More interested in mansions than in castles? Click here for a look at some eight-figure homes.  Top of page


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