December 9, 2018

Tour Report: The Baron's Castle [Revisit]

The second of three abandoned castles I visited on our tour in May of last year together with North Urbex, Pixelcracker and Lost Places in Schleswig-Holstein und Umland was also one that I'd visited before.
And I have to look back at this first time for the start of my story about this visit.
As we had finished our first visit of this castle in July of 2015, we were sitting on the steps in front of the main door of the castle waiting for the last one of our crew to exit the castle through a basement window in the back, when the caretaker showed up on his little tractor - along with his German Shepherd. We had a nice talk with him and he introduced us to the dog - her name was "Helga". He told us that he named the dog Helga, because that was also the name of his wife and this way, he only has to remember one name...
Anyway, it was a nice conversation, and he didn't find out about the guy who was still in the house.

Two and a half years later, I arrived with my friends - and at that moment, the caretaker came on his tractor and drove right to the side of the castle and started cutting the grass...damn!
Because of the "history" I had with him, I got out of the car and went towards him. Helga the dog greeted me happily, and the cartetaker seemed a bit puzzled that I knew the dog's name. I introduced myself and he remembered the talk we had more than two years ago. I explained to him that I was there with a couple of friends and we were wondering if we could get into the castle to take some photos. He said that the baron wouldn't be too happy about that and that he was near impossible to reach to ask for permission.
And then he said..."and it's all locked tightly, so you couldn't get in anyway."
Did we hear correctly? Did he just challenge us?
So we asked if it was okay to take photos - if - we found a way in. He didn't really say yes, but neither did he really say no... So we told him that we were going around to check out the castle from the outside - the challenge still ringing in our ears...

Of course we did find a way in.
I'm not going to go into the details, but when we got out after about two hours and decided to say goodbye to the caretaker, he was mighty pissed at us, saying that he'd told us not to enter the building. We replied that we'd taken his words as a challenge and told him about our way in.
I can still hear his words as he was looking at the narrow access, then at one of us, saying "The fat one never made it through there!"

In the end, we were all friends again, and we even got a half hour history lecture about the castle from the caretaker, which made the visit even more worthwile!

To find out more about the history of this place and to check out all the photos, click the button below.

December 2, 2018

Tour Report: Maison T. [Revisit]

The second tour in May of last year - this one only a one-day excursion - I undetook not with my wife, but with my good friends North Urbex, Pixelcracker and Lost Places in Schleswig-Holstein und Umland. We had chosen three abandoned castles in Eastern Germany as our desired spots. I had visited two of them before together with my wife, one in November of 2014, the other in July of 2015, so there was nothing new for her to see, but I wanted to check for changes that do happen over the course of a few years.

The first spot that we visited that day was Maison T., the one that I first visited in 2014. Although I had hoped that the old access was still opne, I had little hope for that to actually be true...and that access was no longer open. So we had to look for another way in.
And we did find one...
I am not going to go into the details, but it involved a rather elevated window, a block of concrete and a very old and jittery was fun to watch, and I do think that there is a video in existence that shows a particularly scandalous view of  the butt crack of one of our crew members :)

Eventually, we all made our way in and were free to explore. I took the opportunity to get some shots that I'd missed during my first visit, so it was a succesful visit in terms of photography. The state of the castle has declined over the years. The decay has increased and so has the vandalism - although the overall look is still better than you might expect.

Altogether, it was great start in the day with a great crew, lots of laughs and a great location.

To find out more about the history of this place and to check out all the photos, click the button below.

November 18, 2018

Tour Report: Maison Hotel

This old mansion from the 1860s was another accidental find my wife and I made on our tour through Eastern Germany in May of last year. Similar to "Maison Mouton", we were driving through the lovely countryside and while passing a small village, we stumbled across a beautiful old manor house.
There was a car parked in front and two men carrying materials into the house.
I got out of the car and asked if the house was abandoned and if they are the owners. The younger of the two men answered that he was in fact the owner and that the mansion was only partly abandoned. He was renovating it in an attempt to turn it into a kind of hotel.
I asked if there was the possibility to explore the place and take some photos. He was really nice and said that it would be okay - but only on the next day, because he was about to leave. So we planned to visit the place the following day right after "Maison Mouton".

The next day we arrived as scheduled and found the owner working in the garden. He gave us a short tour of the building and explained that he had bought the mansion in 2011 and has since been renovating everything by himself, buying materials and other things such as doors, window frames etc. all over the world to keep the appearance as close to the original as possible. His plan was to turn parts of the old house into a sort of bed & breakfast. He was finished with psome of the rooms and what we saw was really nice and showed how much effort and love he had put into the place.

In this post, you won't find the renovated roms, because we concentrated on the still abandoned parts of the mansion.
To check out how the building and the rooms look like now, you can visit the mansion's website here.

To find out more about the history of this place and to check out all the photos, click the button below.

November 11, 2018

Tour Report: Maison Mouton

This abandoned estate house was an accidental find on a tour through Eastern Germany together with my wife in May of last year.
We were on the way from the Navy Command Bunker to the next location, and on the way I saw a sign for a village whose name I thought might be connected to an abandoned mansion. It turned out that I was mistaken and the village I was thinking of has the same name, but is located in a different part of the state. But we still found an abandoned mansion!
As we were driving through the village, we spotted it. There was another building next to it that had apparently been renovated and there were workers on the premises.
So we parked the car, and I went over to the orange-clad guy and asked him about the old mansion. He said that it was in fact abandoned, but if we wanted to take photos, we'd have to talk to the owner who lived in the renovated building. At that moment, the owner stepped out of the door, and we got the chance to ask her.
She was on the way somewhere, so at that point, there was no chance - but she invited us to come back the next day.
And so we did. We finished our day of exploring with the Professional School K. and headed back to our friend Petra's house for dinner.
The next morning, we had a nice breakfast, and then we drove to the "wrong village with the right name". The owner was expecting us just like we'd promised. Sheep were grazing on the lawn in front of the mansion as the owner led us to the back door, unlocked it and handed us the key.

We took our time walking through the building before we started taking photos. After about two hours, we were done with everything and went back to the owner's house to say goodbye, but she insisted on us having a coffee and showing us what she and (I think) her son-in-law had done with the place. They really had renovated it in a historically accurate style - and they have a huge room full of relics from way back before World War II.
It was a great exploration - not so much because of the location itself, but because it was great to see people trying to rejuvenate the old mansions in the area. And it was great to be reminded that there really are nice people who let us explore their buildings without even knowing anything about us :)

To find out more about the history of this place and to check out all the photos, click the button below.

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