Mystery Castle

Written by on October 14, 2014 in AZ Attractions - Comments Off on Mystery Castle

In 1927, Boyce Luther Gulley learned that he had contracted tuberculosis. Rather than wait for the end to come, Boyce remembered a promise to his little girl, Mary Lou, to build her a castle. The two used to visit the beaches of Seattle and build sand castles together, but the waves always came in a swept the castles away. Mary Lou, then a toddler, suggested that her father build a castle in the desert where there was no water.

He moved to Phoenix, Arizona, abandoning his family in Seattle, shortly after his diagnosis and began a project of creativity and dreams. The result was Mystery Castle — built of native stone, the castle had 18 rooms, 13 fireplaces, parapets, nooks and crannies and was furnished with southwestern antiques.

Boyce died in 1945 before he could send for his family. However, his princess, Mary Lou, did eventually move to the castle and lived her fairy tale. She gave guided tours of her beloved Mystery Castle until her death in 2010. The castle is listed in the Arizona Historic Register and was named a Pride of Phoenix Award winner.

Today, Mystery Castle is open to the public for tours from October – June. Hours vary, so check the website for details, dates and ticket prices.

Mystery Castle
800 E. Mineral Road
Phoenix, AZ 85040

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