If you haven’t seen the Gate Keeper’s Castle at Troll Haven, you’ve surely seen pictures.
It’s the massive purple and faux-stone mansion that perches on a spectacular setting overlooking Gardiner Beach.
It’s part of the 150-acre estate established by part-time peninsula resident Gary Bandy in 1977.
The castle was empty for years as Bandy tried to sell it. Visitors were allowed to check it out from the fence, but taking a gander at the interior took a little more effort.
Now it’s opened to the public — for tours, weddings and as a venue for meals.
You also can spend the night in one of the rooms.
In June, Josie MacLeod, who is leasing the castle from Bandy, opened the castle gates to the Sequim-Dungeness Valley Chamber of Commerce.
Dozens took advantage of the opportunity to check out the interior.
What did they find?
Like the exterior, the castle’s interior is very colorful and highly eccentric.
In a word: It’s all pretty darn cool.
The Gate Keeper’s Castle is, as they say on their website, “a refuge from the mundane.”
Take a tour
The front door, an elaborate piece of work inlaid with stained glass accents, lets into a large living room with a high ceiling featuring beams that form a massive grid. The kitchen is on the far wall; in between a long wooden dining bar hosts a dozen or more elaborately carved stools.
Massive overstuffed chairs and sofas are clustered here and there, with a fireplace to warm the soul.
It’s a sumptuous place for guests to gather.
Two stairways lead up to the second floor, including a spiral staircase that fills the scaled purple turret that is one of the castle’s most notable exterior features. The turret’s interior is resplendent with shining stained glass, stained wood and fine fixtures.
The upstairs guest rooms feature antiques, including a massive carved wood chest. There are private upper decks providing magnificent views of the bay and the strait, and of the spectacular Gardiner hills.
Two flights down you’ll find the dungeon, a windowless, “cozy” labyrinth. This three-bedroom suite is most often rented out to one party — usually very good friends. The common area holds a massive Jacuzzi.
The furnishings abet the dungeon theme, with crossed swords on display and dragons etched in glowing glass. One bedroom features a series of, well, nightmarish portraits. In another bedroom a pair of handcuffs and a whip hang above a four-poster bed.
It is all outrageous and spooky and fun. And it’s now open to you and your friends.
For more information, see thegatekeeperscastle.com. To take a tour, or to book a room or event, call 640-3560.