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Tyringham, Massachusetts: Santarella - Gingerbread House

Fairy tale-inspired home of English sculptor Henry Hudson Kitson, who died penniless after pouring all his money into the eclectic wavy asphalt shingle roofed structure. Now a B and B that offers tours.

75 Main Rd, Tyringham, MA
Just off I-90 Exit 2. Take US 20 East. Take first right onto MA 102 W/Pleasant St., then take immediate left onto Tyringham Rd. Go 3.3 miles, cottage is on your left.
Always visible. Tours by appt. only. (Call to verify) Local health policies may affect hours and access.
Suggested $4 adults, free from street
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Visitor Tips and News About Santarella - Gingerbread House

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Santarella - Gingerbread House.

Santarella - Gingerbread House

The Santarella house is showing signs of decay. The roof appears to have some holes, and the landscaping is overgrown. So sad to see for this unique and treasured home.

[Luv2RV, 10/10/2023]

Santarella - Gingerbread House.

Santarella - Gingerbread House

Besides holding your wedding there, you can also spend the night at Santarella, and you can arrange that on Air B'n'B. And if you'd like to buy Santarella, it's for sale.

[Dean Jeffrey, 11/04/2017]

Gingerbread ain't cheap; the house is listed for $2.6 million.


Santarella - Fairy Tale Cottage

Fairy Tales Can Come True!

For a price. This cottage is not in any way Disneyfied, no cute bluebirds singing, no mice cleaning the floors, no small men ogling an underage princess. It is wayyyyyyyyy cooler than Disney. When gazing at the rolling roof, gothic glassed windows, and steep sharp garden rocks, Whistle While You Work never enters your internal ipad. It's been called "The Gingerbread House," but it doesn't look edible to me. The cottage, tower, and grounds seem as though an illustration from an antique storybook just appeared from the mist and took residence. However, the entire place is quite solid and as fascinating and yes, magical, OK, I said it, as any fairy tale or boy adventure story written.

Gingerbread House.

Santarella, as it was named, was the passion of the sculptor who gave us the Lexington Minuteman and Plymouth Rock Maiden statues. Sir Henry Hudson Kitson began what he intended to be a renovation of his barn into a working studio. What he ended up with was an amazing bizarre property, an obsession, and poverty. The last 25 years of his life were consumed with perfecting Santarella. Not able to grow the proper rye for the roof, he had twelve men hand-make asphalt shingles. Either this was an incredibly difficult procedure, or the men were very happy bilking the guy, because it took 12 years to complete!

After various uses, the incredible property -- including a honeymoon tower, luscious grounds, an idyllic pond, and walks in the woods -- is now a bed and breakfast. If you contact the owners, a tour can be arranged of the grounds.

The owner was wonderfully knowledgeable and took pains to show us every nook and cranny of the ofttimes unreal place. I would have died to have booked my wedding there. (As long as the requisite prince did the kissing thing).

Naturally, I wanted to move in immediately, but no fairy godmother appeared to grant me my wish.

[Diane Plumley, 08/25/2011]

Nearby Offbeat Places

Big BeaverBig Beaver, Lee, MA - 3 mi.
Wonder Woman Rosey HouseWonder Woman Rosey House, Lee, MA - 4 mi.
World's Oldest Paperboy StatueWorld's Oldest Paperboy Statue, Great Barrington, MA - 9 mi.
In the region:
Big Cement Milk Bottle, Whately, MA - 32 mi.

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