THE CASTLE IN THE CLOUDS

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cover new england

This is an extract of my article, with small photos. You will find the complete article with full-sized photos in my e-book View America: New England

In the travel series View America, this book describes Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont. Each state is described with its own brief historical background and its main sights, points of interest and tourist attractions.

It is not a traditional travel story, but a non-commercial and more or less objective chronicle of an in-depth exploration of these states. My book does not describe lodgings, restaurants or entertainment, except where these may interact with the narrative. It is illustrated with more than 100 full-sized photos.

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The Castle in the Clouds

The entrance to the Castle in the Clouds is located on route 171. The trail that gives access to the house is just a small, steep and winding path between the trees, and sometimes just a scant foot remains between the sides of the car and the trees... As a matter of fact, I'll tell you an anecdote later, about this particular access road!

Along the road you'll see the Castle Springs falls, which is a scenic viewpoint for great pictures. The mountain has its own natural spring, where even to date fresh spring water is being bottled, under the name "Castle Springs".

From the parking lot, the estate can be reached with a trolley. But first, let's get back to this rather peculiar access road. During the construction, Mr. Plant had ordered TWO roads to be built to the estate. The first one, the small and winding path, would lead from the main road to the house. The second one was to lead from the house to the source, and then back to the main road. So, the workers built both roads with two wide and comfortable lanes. But when Mr. Plant returned from a trip from Europe, he wasn't pleased. He ordered the first road to be demolished, and instead had them build the present small and winding path! His reasoning was that visitors would be more impressed during the long climb to the house...

Plant was a well-traveled person, and in his plans he used a mixture of European elements, such as Spanish tiles for the roof, but also English, Norwegian, Swiss and Japanese materials and influences. He wanted a house that could withstand the test of time, and designed all the facades in granite blocks. For this, he hired 1,000 Italian stonemasons and builders, who cut stones for more than two years. In 1913 his Castle in the Clouds was finished, and the whole project had cost him 1.5 million dollars!

the Castle in the Clouds 1

the Castle in the Clouds 2

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