A Kelowna neighbourhood has quite the gem: a turret made out of approximately 4,000 wine bottles.
The turret has been in the area for about 27 years, but it was hidden from view because of overgrown trees and bushes. The Gross family now owns the property, including the wine-bottle structure.
Mom Jodie Ganske said it was an interesting discovery for them to see it when they first purchased the property. She said the previous owner built the tower for his wife. Now, it’s become a bit of a neighbourhood icon.
Her daughters Sadie and Molly love the turret and have said it was better than having a treehouse.
“We’ve been up (the turret) many times, mainly with friends. It’s kinda scary up there so we’re not up there a lot. But when we have friends come over, that’s the first thing they ask: ‘can we go into the castle?’,” Sadie said.
“In elementary school, we’d have trips up to the pond behind the neighbourhood and all of my friends would be like ‘that’s Sadie’s house!’ and all of the boys would be like ‘she has a castle in her house?’ and I would be popular.”
The family said they’ve met many people from the neighbourhood because of the castle, as well as others just driving by.
“We get lots of cars stopping at the end of our driveway, some people walking up the hill, which we don’t mind at all,” Ganske said.
“We just don’t want people climbing up the turret without our knowledge though, because of course there are risks involved.”
The turret has two upper levels, including an open rooftop, which offers a view of the neighbourhood.
Ganske said the turret will stay as it’s a nice point of conversation within the community, but they don’t know if they’ll add to it.
“There have been times we’ve thought about adding a slide down it, some cool decorations inside but it’s never actually happened, unfortunately. Hopefully, it will happen at some point,” Sadie said.
With residents self-isolating and spending so much time at home, Ganske said they may actually have time to finally add to it.
“It took (the original owners) seven years but with all this time, it could probably take us seven days,” she joked.