WATERTOWN — You can't see it from the street, but drive down a dirt road in Watertown and all of a sudden a castle pops up out of nowhere. You will feel like you have teleported to the French countryside in the 15th century.
It's called the Wisteria Castle at N7040 Saucer Dr., Watertown.
"When we saw this, it was over - we're going to get this house," Dianne Owens, the owner, said.
She bought and named it with her husband Paul Elliot in July 2020 for just under $500,000, after it was foreclosed. Originally, a couple wanted to build the castle. They began construction in the 2000s. However, once the husband died, the wife tried to sell off the property. Unable to do so, it went into foreclosure and was left vacant since 2011.
"Oh my god, I own a castle, and now when I come home from work, it's like this is my house," Paul Elliot said.
How many castles are there in Wisconsin? There is no exact count, but probably safe to say just a handful, which makes this home all the more unique. It incorporates both Victorian and Medieval themes, Owens said.
It has a suit of armor, replica Vermeer painting, statuary, and so much more. Everything is a replica. However, no detail is spared. Even the wallpaper is painted to mimic what a palace would look like.
While the house isn't up for sale, people might be able to use it one day soon.
"So we're looking at weddings. We're looking at corporate events, retirement parties, things like that," Elliot said.
Which is why they built this chapel. It has painted on stone walls, faux stain glass windows, and even church pews. It all adds to the fancy aesthetic you would find in such a castle sometime between the 14th and 19th centuries.
“I decided I want this chapel here to look very old and authentic-looking," Owens said.
Since the couple bought a foreclosed house that was only halfway built, there is still some work to do. The facade and much of the two main floors are completed. However, the entire top fourth floor still needs work to be done. Some of the hand railings and banisters need to be touched up too.
“We got a probably another three to four years until it's to our satisfaction," Owens said.
They plan on hosting events like weddings much sooner than that, though. You can stay up to date with everything that the couple is doing with the castle by following their Facebook page or going to their website.