Posted: Feb 9, 2016
Close your eyes and imagine your dream home. What would you buy if money was no object? Your own fortress? A shimmering vision of Hollywood glamour? A castle to suit a king or queen? Every so often, a property search will throw up something genuinely unusual for sale. Here are ten unusual or quirky homes on the market (from £105,000 - £27m) around the world to make all your dreams come true.
1. Pilling, Lancashire £495,000
Live like Windy Miller in this very original family home. The spacious open-plan living area has a slate floor inset with four original millstones. A central staircase leads up to two double bedrooms and a family bathroom on the first floor. Up a level is a further lounge with access to a 360-degree wrap around balcony making the most of the countryside views. A spiral staircase leads to the en-suite master bedroom on the third floor, with access to a fourth floor hobby room. The rural setting, with views out to the Lake District and Pennines, is complemented by a secluded south-facing garden.
2. Woodstock Castle, Connecticut, USA £27m ($39m)
This is a Connecticut castle fit for King Arthur. A truly Disney-esque creation with turrets, moat and stairways, it will enchant any visiting princess. Set in 75 acres of ground, it has grand public rooms, featuring inlaid wood floors and elaborate ceilings, marble bathrooms, huge windows and magnificent fireplaces. There are nine bedrooms, a swimming pool and a private lake. This would be a sure winner as a romantic wedding venue.
3. Fort Picklecombe, Maker Point, Cornwall £365,000
Lord Palmerston commissioned this huge stone fortress in the mid-19th century when the country feared invasion from France. No shot was ever fired here and the edifice has been residential apartments since the 1970s. This four-bedroomed duplex flat has magnificent far- reaching panoramic views – all the better to spy the approaching enemy. The walls are curved, the windows deep set, the floors solid oak. There is a private south-facing sun terrace and communal Italianate gardens with a sheltered outdoor swimming pool.
4. Quimper, Brittany, France £1.5m (€1.9m)
Surrounded by well-kept gardens and 37 acres of land, this chateau sits in a world of its own, yet is only five minutes from Quimper, Brittany’s capital. A 19th century building with fairytale turrets, it has six bedrooms and large, elegant reception rooms. Quimper is a cathedral city with an atmospheric old town, two rivers and a mouth-watering selection of creperies.
Agent: Sotheby’s Realty; 0033 297 350010; (www.sothebysrealty.com)
5. Redruth, Cornwall £350,000
Wheal Rose is the former engine house of a tin mine. Standing proud over the countryside, this conversion has two reception rooms, three bedrooms and a balcony with incredible views. There are two patio areas and a large lawned area outside. Visit the sandy beaches at Gwithian and Portreath, just a few miles away, or take a trip to Truro for shopping and entertainment.
Agent: Humberts Truro; 01872 300119; (www.humberts.com)
6. Vilanova i la Geltru, Spain POA
In a traditional fishing port 40 minutes from Barcelona, and close to sizzling Sitges, this palace is certainly Moorish. Its airy, high-ceilinged rooms are decorated with intricate patterns and motifs. Doorways and windows are built with horseshoe arches and the ceilings are covered in frescoes. The Sultan master suite is on the second floor, with sea views, and there are seven other bedrooms plus a guesthouse. Beyond the terrace, there are manicured lawns, a heated pool, a walled garden and a pond.
Agent: Lucas Fox; 0034 933 562989; ( www.lucasfox.com)
7. Torre San Nicalau, Mahon, Menorca £2.2m (€2.9m)
Once a defensive tower to guard the stretch of coastline, this sturdy slice of history is now a five-bedroom property with spectacular views. There’s also a former hayloft adjoining the tower, which gives an extra en-suite bedroom, plus two separate barn conversions currently used as holiday accommodation. The five acres of land includes beautiful gardens and orchards. There is an outdoor kitchen, a swimming pool, terraces and shady seating areas.
8. Sotogrande Alto, Spain £6m (€8m)
This mansion, fit for a movie star, is in the hills, so its elevation simply adds to the panorama. Sweep down the magnificent staircase and lead your guests to the 16-seat cinema suite to preview your latest blockbuster. Every other room in this five-bedroom villa will similarly suit your A-lister visitors, too.
9. Camerino, Le Marche, Italy £448,700 (€590,000)
This former Post House in the Appenines was a refreshment stop on the old road from Umbria to the Marches, where travellers could rest their horses and themselves. It is a fortified tower house and has been partly restored. The structure is sound and the roof repaired. The first floor has plenty of living space and four bedrooms. There’s a separate apartment on the next level, accessible by interior and exterior staircases, and there is a room – with a view – in the tower. The property comes with 3 acres of land, plus another field a little further off.
10. And finally… Alcazaba Lagoon, Malaga, Spain £105,000 (€139,000)
Here is an unusual location rather than an unusual home. Crystal Lagoons are a new concept in beachside living. These man-made water worlds are springing up across the globe, from Chile to Dubai, and now there’s one in Spain. Alcazaba Lagoon will offer up to 450 homes, 100 of which are already built. The four-acre private lake, situated in the Casares municipality of Malaga on the Costa del Sol, is fringed by white sand, providing its residents with their own idyllic beach paradise – inland. Two and three bedroom homes are currently on sale.