Damn, look at pure beauty under the gloomy skies - the is Bran Castle in Transylvania. The finest, the bestest, the most tempting piece of real estate in the whole world, and it is for sale.
It was in Bran Castle where infamous warlord Prince Vlad the Impaler, known for his unusual cruelty spent a night in 14th century. And it was Bran Castle and the legend of Prince Vlad of Transylvania that inspired Bram Stoker to write one of the greatest books ever written - Dracula.
The Habsburgs, The Romanian royal family moved into Bran Castle in the 1920s, but had to abandon it in 1948 when Bran Castle was confiscated by Romanian communists. After fall of communism in Romania, The Habsburgs were given Dracula’s Castle back, but they’ve lived comfortably in New York and had no intentions to come back to Romania. Afterall, it’s Romania and if you didn’t know, Romania Looks Pretty Crazy (pics).
Communists restored Bran Castle in 1980s because it was falling apart. Archduke Dominic Habsburg, an architect from New York and the son of Princess Ileana - the heir to the Habsburg throne got it back in 2006. He pledged to keep it open until 2009 as a museum. Dracula’s Castle subsequently attracted hundreds of thousands of tourists who visited “the museum” but it is safe to assume that they were all attracted by the fact that this is the castle in which Bram Stoker’s Dracula takes place. It’s the Dracula’s Castle, the most famous and the scariest of all castles around the world.
Dominic Habsburg’s pledge to keep Bran Castle open as a museum expires next year and that will mark the end of interests of the Royal Habsburg family in the castle they once occupied. Even though vastly restored in the 80s, the castle is not in the greatest shape. It was built in 14th century after all and the uncompromising tooth of time takes its toll. It will require immense investment to restore it to a beautiful castle it once was, but it will forever remain the most famous of all castles in the world.
Imagine the possibilities. Imagine Vampire parties you could run in that place. Damn it, I can’t even talk about it cause I’m getting so excited I feel like crying. Imagine not spending an hour at the tour in the castle, but the week of debauchery during total lunar eclipse – got you wet in your pants already? Damn, I’m talking about the most exquisite experience a life can possibly bring. This damn castle is for sale and someone’s gonna buy it next year. The highest bidder will get Dracula’s Castle. I want to be her…
Bran Castle History
Bran Castle was built as a fortress in early 12th Century by the Knights of the Teutonic Order who named it Dietrichstein. It was built on an elevated cliff near Brasov in the Carpathian Mountains of central Romania, the area called Transylvania. Brasov was an important trading point in the medieval times and later in the 12th century the castle served as protection point of Brasov. When Ottoman Turks started to invade the area in the 14th Century, the Bran Castle served as a fortress to protect against them. It has been used as an important fortress throughout Middle Ages. The original building consisted of only one tower, but century after century more was being built until the Castle reached its current size in 16th century. In 1921, Queen Maria of Romania has the castle restored entirely and turned it from fortress into a Royal residence and The Habsburgs moved in.
Bran Castle is not the castle in which Prince Vlad the Impaler resided. His Castle, the actual Castle Dracula is now in ruin on a secluded site near the Arges River in Romania.
Prince Vlad the Impaler aka Earl Dracula
Vlad Tepes (aka Vlad III Dracula) earned his nick because of unusual cruelty towards his enemy and the way he tortured them. His favorite method of execution was impalement. Vlad prided himself in abilities to prolong victims suffering. He never stopped inventing new methods to make the impalement more torturous and long lasting. For example he always made sure the stakes are not sharp too much otherwise the victim could die of shock before they died of agony and bleeding out. Children were impaled on the same stake their mother was impaled.
Impaled bodies were left on their stakes for months. Dracula kept them organized into geometric patterns and had tens of thousands of impaled bodies at any given time. The reek the corpses and the gruesome sight of tortured bodies were so bad, that the army of invading Turks that came to conquer the area under the command of Mohammed II who conquered Constantinople got instantly sick, turned around and ran away.
1941 German woodblock print litograph of Vlad Dracula's impalement victims
Impalement was not the only means of torture and execution Dracula used. Tearing off limbs, prior to execution, hammering nails into victim’s skulls, burning eyes out with red hot metal rods, cutting off ears and noses as well as complete mutilation of sexual organs – especially in women – were also very popular. Many victims were burned alive on a stake, or boiled alive – cause that makes the body swell – skinning alive and throwing to fire ants were also utilized.
Portrait of Vlad Dracula
The real Dracula really visited Bran Castle in 1415 and stayed the night. The Habsburg heir is planning to sell it in 2009. It is expected to go for over $135 million