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“Fascinating Castle”
Review of Fonthill

Fonthill
Ranked #1 of 32 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.
Reviewed February 4, 2014

Spent Saturday afternoon here with a friend and we thoroughly enjoyed it. Our tour guide, Joe, was wonderful and made it so much fun as we went through this totally eccentric, yet beautiful home. Mercer must have had a mind organized like an encyclopedia, as there were so many tiled scenes throughout the cement castle that took a lot of forethought and preparation. This is a nice way to learn about history in our backyard (I live in N.J.) and a place anyone would enjoy.

1  Thank ChefAnnMt_Laurel_NJ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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264 - 268 of 375 reviews

Reviewed January 24, 2014

This place was amazing. A true castle in the middle of Pennsylvania. So much history and neat little oddities. The whole building is made of concrete and reused item from the dumb and what Mercer found on the curb. Mercer also had the walls and ceilings decorated with tiles made at his Pottery Works. The tour guide was phenomenal and the maze of hallways and stairs was so confusing you had to be sure not to lose the group. I highly recommend going to this gem in Doylestown

1  Thank jehenson81
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 22, 2014

Don't miss this. The tour and building are really interesting - this is the work of a brilliant, twisted, man-child with unlimited resources to imagine and build his own house. Good for almost any age - but there are a LOT of steps, so this would be a challenge for a toddler or unsteady walker. The tour will stick with you for some time.

1  Thank mildlyadventurous
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 16, 2014

Fonthill Castle is a tale of two wonders. First is the home itself - American Craftsman style built of poured concrete - and second the collection of ceramic tiles it was built to display. Both are amazing. The castle is the work of the quintessential turn of the century American millionaire Henry Chapman Mercer, who designed the home, micromanaged the construction, and even developed new techniques for creating vaulted ceilings from pour concrete with embedded decorative. The tiles themselves come from all of the world, including China, Spain, the Middle East, and more. Two of the most amazing collections on display are the cuneiform tablets from ancient Babylon and the Delftware collection that cover multiple centuries and traces the advent of the most highly prized blue and white tiles collected today. Among these collections are thousands of tiles designed by Mercer for his house - a monument to the pre-industrial world.

Tours are on the hour and half hour, and are well worth the $12 entry fee. Unfortunately, they don't allow photos in the house, which I think is an opportunity missed. Not enough people know what is at Fonthill, and a steady trickle of photos might help.

1  Thank Jason R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 10, 2014

We visited this castle with our 3 children because we needed a pit stop through PA. The Fonthill Castle consists of 32 stairwells, 44 rooms, 10 bathrooms and 5 bedrooms and is filled with unique tile work created by the castle's original owner. The tour guide was very informative and started off with an announcement “don’t fall behind the tour, you will get lost and not find your way out”. This definitely got the kids excited! The tiles and the history of the castle and its owner were very entertaining for my husband and myself. I will say that the kids were more entertained with the structure of the castle and its narrow hallways/staircases. Overall, it was a successful pit stop!

Thank FamFunActivities
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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