Casa Loma: A Castle in Toronto
Casa Loma was built as a residence for the eccentric financier Sir Henry Mill Pellatt. His dream to live in a castle was destroyed by the exorbitant expenses of maintaining the largest private residence Canada had ever seen. The construction started in 1911. Three years later, $3.5 million had been spent and it wasn’t finished yet. When the World War I started Sir Henry Mill Pellatt left to fight. The construction was halted. When the war was finally over, an economic depression followed. Pellatt was forced to give up his home. Casa Loma was never finished. Sadly he enjoyed less than 10 years in his castle.
The Casa Loma is now a museum and landmark. It offers self-guided tours around the castle. The tour in Casa Loma starts downstairs. After picking up the audio guide at the souvenir shop I start to explore the house. In front of the souvenir shop, posters of the movies filmed in the house hang on the wall. Passing the wine cellar I walk through the dark underground tunnel that connects the main building to the carriage room, potting shed and stables. In the potting shed, beautiful flowers share the space with herbs and other plants.
Continuing to the carriage room, I find an impressive vintage car collection from the early 1900s.
Going back through the same tunnel I head back to the main building. I take the stairs to the main floor and find myself in the great hall. There are flags hanging in the high ceilings, huge chandeliers, and a medieval armor on display. There’s a piano in one corner of the room and a white pipe organ in another corner.
Crossing the library and the dining room I arrive at the beautiful conservatory with marble floor and ornate glass ceiling. Going back through the Peacock Alley passageway I visit the other rooms in the main floor: the Oak Room (the most decorated room in the house), Sir Henry Pellat’s Study, the Smoking Room and the Billiard Room.
The bedrooms are located on the second floor. There are Sir Henry Pellatt’s suite and bathroom, Lady Pellatt’s suite and bathroom, the guest suite, the Windsor Room and the Round Room.
On the third floor, there’s the Queen’s Own Rifles Museum and the stairs to the Towers.