A The Gothic-style Connecticut castle, built by a wealthy heir so his daughters could have a fairytale childhood, has increased its price by $25 million.
Chris Mark spent seven years building the fort, which sits on 75 acres near the town of Woodstock and features a 150-foot tower, turrets, two stone bridges spanning the moat, 12 fireplaces, and an underground auditorium and cinema .
His eldest daughter, 17-year-old social media influencer Christina, runs the popular Chris Mark Castle TikTok account, where she posts hilarious clips about her “life as a princess,” complete with Cinderella disguises, references to leprechauns and good Fairies and friends in superhero outfits performing stunts, all set to rap songs and Disney classics.
Christina takes her 343,000 followers on tours of the castle, which features a hot tub with its own rock waterfall, while she performs dance routines.
The lock was first listed in 2014 with an asking price of $45 million before being pulled from the market in 2016 after the asking price dropped to $32 million.
It was relisted in November for $35 million and the asking price has since been raised to $60 million.
Real estate agent John Pizzi tells The Independent The price had been raised after the lock’s replacement was estimated at $60 million.
“It’s a real one-of-a-kind fairytale castle built with truly remarkable craftsmanship and attention to detail,” said Mr. Pizzi The Independent.
“From the pictures you could think it was from the Middle Ages. Finding out that it is only 20 years old is remarkable.”
Mr Pizzi said Chris Mark, the great-grandson of Chicago steel magnate Clayton Mark, was inspired to get involved in the ambitious project after his daughters asked him: “Daddy, why don’t you build us a castle?”
“It certainly raises the bar for us other dads. If my daughter wanted a lock, it would be made of cardboard,” said Mr. Pizzi The Independent.
During a two-year tour of Europe, Chris Mark bought original doors, woodwork and mantels from crumbling French castles, churches and cathedrals and then shipped them back to the US.
Mr. Mark also imported 25 different hardwoods for use in flooring and furnishings.
He hired a Connecticut boat builder to hand carve the doors and had the wrought iron gates, staircase and window frames custom made at a nearby foundry.
He’s also flown in more than 100 artisans from Europe to help with the “amazing” craftsmanship.
“I think the most amazing thing is how it all happened, he started doing sketches, went to an architect, had a design done and then was active throughout the process. He was present every day and oversaw the entire process.”
Christina and her sister Vivien served as models for some of the sculptures around the house.
The castle was used as a location for music videos, weddings and classic car meetings. There was interest from a French production company who wanted to film one game of Thrones-style drama, but that failed, said Herr Pizzi.
Mr Pizzi said he’s seen a few TikTok videos of Christina but he’s not big on social media.
“I’m 75 years old and I’m not into TikTok and Instagram and all that stuff.”
It seems that not all family members support the sale. On a recent TikTok, Christina, who didn’t respond to a request for interview, wrote: “Hopefully it doesn’t sell! I love it here.”
The property features modern amenities like central air conditioning, an elevator, radiant floors, a pool, dock, and garage—as well as gothic luxuries like fireplaces, turrets, an entrance hall, a 30-acre pond, stained glass, and 25 styles of hardwood floors.
There’s also a raised stage auditorium, guest apartment, recording studio, and 400 acres, including that moat, according to the listing.