Why Stay at a Hotel When You Can Stay In a Castle? Getting Medieval in Kentucky




Photo by JAB Photos

All Photos are by Joshua Brandenburg from

Hotels are everywhere. You’re never far from one. Or a B&B or Home Away or whatever else there is out there.  A place to stop on vacation is easy to find. You know what isn’t easy to find? A castle. Castles are scarce in the United States. Sure, in Europe you can find one easily, but not so much here.

While I was putting together a trip to the Bourbon Trail in Kentucky, I was speaking to a PR rep from a hotel who gave me some suggestions about where to eat and visit. At the end of the conversation, the rep asked me if I had planned on visiting the Kentucky Castle. After talking about the Castle for a few minutes, I put it into our schedule.

After visiting the Woodford Distillery, we punched the Castle’s address into our Kia Stinger’s GPS and headed towards the Castle. My brother-in-law and I wondered how far down the road we would travel when we noticed the Castle rising from the top of a hill. The Kentucky Castle is impossible to pass without a look. It’s huge and looks as though it’s been removed from the pages of a fairy tale and placed in the Kentucky countryside, which is pretty much what happened.

In 1969, Millionaire Rex Martin and his wife began building a castle in Kentucky after visiting Germany. Unfortunately for Mr. Martin, his wife filed for divorce in 1975. The story goes that Mr. Martin was so brokenhearted over the divorce he never finished the castle. Several suitors offered to buy the castle from him, but he turned them down. Finally, he put the castle on the market in 1988, but passed away before the castle sold. The ownership changed over the years and the Castle was recently renovated. Now it is the perfect location for a wedding or a conference. Or in our case, a place for two weary guys to explore and rest.

We were greeted by a friendly staff and given a tour of the grounds. Within the grounds are adorable goats, chickens, and a honeybee hive. There’s also a garden which the Castle’s restaurant uses for their delicious farm to table meals. After the tour, we settled into our rooms and our relaxation began. It is a shame they wasted the Castle’s amazing room on two brothers-in-law, because the room is a perfect place for a romantic getaway. Instead, it was used by two middle-aged knuckleheads pretending the Castle was being invaded.

There have been many moments as a travel blogger where I wished my wife and kids were around to witness a location I was staying. Having my family visit the Castle would have been fun. I can only imagine pretending my daughters were princesses and my boys were princes. Or, it would have been fun to visit the Castle with my wife for a romantic getaway. My brother-in-law and I did have a lot of fun and the space and comfort of our room gave us plenty of rest and a workspace to get things accomplished. Hopefully, I can bring the rest of the family back for another visit.

If you are near Versailles, Kentucky and looking for a luxurious place to stay, a great meal, or a peaceful and romantic getaway, head to the Kentucky Castle. And if you are with your brother-in-law and would like to pretend you are a knight, then I recommend packing a lance to joust with. Although you might get looks carrying it through the lobby.

Disclosure: We were hosted by the Kentucky Castle, but the words and photos are our own. 




  1. As usual… living vicariously through your adventures. Cool that you’re in my neck of the woods when I was growing up as a kid and now not too far away.

  2. OH my goodness, the Castle is amazing!!! I love the animals and the farm-to-table concept. This is going on our Wish List of places to visit.

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