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Newcomers aren't sure what to make of this odd construct, which has been likened to many things -- one of the better printable ones a hunk of wedding cake crowned by giant green candles (i.e., the swarm of saguaros standing sentinel around the castle). It was built by Italian entrepreneur Alessio Carraro and named after meat-packing magnate Edward Tovrea, who bought the baronial digs for his wife, Della, in 1931. The lonely and battered but still somehow regal edifice, currently owned by the City of Phoenix and under renovation, now holds court over a section of town whose elegance long ago faded.
Neither Valley virgins nor vets know quite what to make of Tovrea Castle, which is always a startling sight for drivers toodling along on Loop 202....
Ah, tourists. In Phoenix, we'll be hardpressed to point out a tourist at any given theater, museum, or cultural center -- we're all wearing T-shirts and shorts, most of us are taking pictures and inst... More »
You're bound to spot the cake-like structure just off Interstate 202 and 48th Street if you look carefully around the bend. Sitting on the top of a hill, the house has one of the best views of the Valley -- and a colorful backstory to boot. It was built in 1929 by an Italian immigrant and sold in the '30s to cattle baron E.A. Tovrea for his wife, Della. The estate was passed down through the Tovrea family, wrapped up in one of Arizona's most sensational murder trials, and ultimately... More »
Like so many things in Phoenix, Tovrea Castle isn't what it appears to be at all. This peculiar, turreted house, built in 1928 in what was then literally the middle of nowhere at 50th Street and Van Buren, looks more like an attraction at a miniature golf course than a building inspired by the homes of Italian noblemen. Seen from eastbound Loop 202, Tovrea (pronounced Toe-vree) is a flag-topped, dome-roofed faux castle in the middle of the Southwest desert, a kitschy reminder that Phoenix... More »
The City of Phoenix's ongoing renovation of Tovrea Castle, one of the Valley's premier oddball landmarks, has given us hope that Phoenix has finally learned to spell "p-r-e-s-e-r-v-a-t-i-o-n." The estate -- which looks like a royal wedding cake defended by a swarm of palace-guard saguaros -- was built by Italian entrepreneur Alessio Carraro and named after meat-packing magnate Edward Tovrea, who bought the baronial digs for his wife, Della, in 1931. The sentinel saguaros are part of... More »
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