Architecture is influenced by Eros, Greek god of sexual love and beauty, also known as Roman counterpart Cupid. Architecture can be beautiful and a thing to love. But there are some castles built specifically for love as loving tributes, gifts, or even erected for love lost. Nothing is more powerful than love and expressing love in architecture is divinely romantic. However, love and tragedy are reoccurring themes to these castles. For Valentine’s Day, here are 10 castles built for love.
Boldt Castle on Heart Island, New York
Taj Mahal in Agra, India
(image credits:wikipedia,taj-mahal)The Taj Mahal was built for love, but tragically as a mausoleum and in memory of love lost. After the death of his favorite wife, Mumtaz Mahal, Emperor Shah Jahan began building a tomb that would be the most resplendent monument ever built by man for a woman. While the dome of the mausoleum and its four standing minarets are built out of white marble, all the outlying buildings within the Taj Mahal complex are primarily built out of red sandstone, combining Persian, Indian, and Islamic architectural styles. The central focus of the complex is the tomb and you can tour it virtually here.
Swallow’s Nest Castle: “Castle of Love” in Crimean, Ukraine
(image credits:English Russia,Oddity Central)Built in 1912 near Yalta in the South of Crimea, the Swallow’s Nest is one of the most romantic castles of Neo-Gothic style. The Swallow’s Nest Castle was originally named “The Castle of Love.” However, the romantically named “Love Castle” started with humble beginnings as a wooden cottage. There is little proof that this “Castle of Love” was built for a great love . . . more like a lover’s nest. Perhaps not constructed for true love but built for the purpose of making love. In 1927, an earthquake measuring 6-7 on the Richter scale, cracked the 130 ft Aurora Cliff. The huge crack closed the castle for the next 40 years. The cliff and castle have since been fortified and restored. The public flocks to Swallow’s Nest Castle to look over Ai–Todor Cape, the Black Sea, and to dine in the restaurant now within the castle’s walls.