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“A European Castle in a Suburban Neighborhood”
Review of Fonthill

Fonthill
Ranked #2 of 31 things to do in Doylestown
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Once the home of Henry Mercer (1856-1930,) this concrete castle boasts 44 rooms with interior walls, floors and ceilings adorned with a dazzling array of the artist’s original handcrafted tiles.
Cheltenham, Pennsylvania, United States
Level Contributor
67 reviews
31 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
“A European Castle in a Suburban Neighborhood”
Reviewed October 12, 2012

Imagine the consternation of the neighbors in what was then a somewhat rural community when the eccentric Henry Mercer began construction on his all concrete castle! Henry Mercer was an artist and entrepreneur. His unique tiles became desired all around the world. His castle is where he displayed the many different tile designs and mosaics. It is a wonder! I went for the 1st time in early 2012 and returned 2 more times within a couple of months. I plan to go back again and again. There is so much to see.

Visited March 2012
Helpful?
5 Thank RuthR655
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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341 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Bucks County, PA
Level Contributor
24 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“A really cool quirky castle”
Reviewed September 25, 2012

I have visited castles aboard but I have never seen anything like this. It is really fun to climb the narrow stairways and explore. You will be amazed when the tour guide explains how everything was created. The tile work is amazing. This man was truly ahead of his time.

Visited June 2012
Helpful?
5 Thank calmmom9293
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bolingbrook, Illinois
Level Contributor
15 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Interesting museum. Torture for children...”
Reviewed September 17, 2012

This is a very beautiful and unique attraction- with rooms connected to more rooms, connected to stairs and balconies and nooks! The guides are full of interesting facts and stories and the groups are necessarily small.

BUT it is a MUSEUM, and scampering through the inviting interconnected layout is prohibited, as is touching the many artifacts and even the walls and tiles. Which makes this about the hardest place to bring an active child; it is SO cool, but they are not allowed to explore freely. My teenagers were fine with it, but I can't imagine what it would have been like to try to rein them in when they were 5.

Several other notes:
You are not allowed to take pictures inside the structure. Not sure why.

"Reservations recommended" means if you do not have reservations, you may not be seeing the place. Although this IS on the web site, it is easily overlooked, as it is at the top of the page, not by the museum imformation.

Mercer Museum is nearby and is also a castle structure built by Mercer. However, both close around 5, with last visitors admitted at 4 pm or earlier. SO if you plan to see both, go early. Otherwise, you will only fit in one.

Visited August 2012
Helpful?
3 Thank jederle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
9 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Beyond your visions.”
Reviewed September 12, 2012

See how someone created a unique and magical house... though I can't imagine growing up there, I would have liked to.

Helpful?
4 Thank Cori L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Doylestown, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
102 reviews
39 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
“tour”
Reviewed September 7, 2012

took a "little sister" there for a tour of the castle and the history of Dr. Mercer and his love of tiles and the way he embedded them into his own residence... wonderful

Visited May 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank floss757
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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