Boldt Castle

Boldt Castle is the main tourist attraction and landmark of the Thousand Islands. It is located on Heart Iceland in the Thousand Islands of the St. Lawrence River, on the New York side of the border between the United States and Canada. Boldt Castle is a destination for many day-trippers and can be reached by boat tour or by private boat.


Boldt Castle was built between 1894 ( first outbuildings, main building from 1900) and 1904 built and is considered one of the best examples of buildings in the style of Romanticism in North America.

George C. Boldt, born in 1853 on Rügen, a wealthy hotel magnate from New York City, manager of the Waldorf -Astoria hotel, wanted for his family and himself, but in particular provide for his wife, an incomparable residence. It should be the largest and finest private residential building in North America and a symbol of his love for his wife Louise. 1894 construction began for the first outbuilding. The construction of the six-story, a European chateau -inspired main building began in 1900. The construction was almost completed in 1904 when Boldt's wife died suddenly. On the same day the work on the building have been set, and Boldt entered the island ever again. The approximately three hundred artisans and workers on the site and many employees in the supplier companies were unemployed from one day to the next. Between 1904 and 1977 the building was no longer maintained and fell into disrepair due to vandalism and environmental influences appreciably. In 1977, the Thousand Iceland Bridge Authority took over the building and began immediately with the most necessary renovations to the now dilapidated building. Today, the complex is again almost in the state of the year 1904. So he will leave deliberately unfinished and not completed subsequently. The renovations have cost several million USD. Parts continue to be renovated and are not yet open to the public. The rooms have no furniture or furnishings, as Boldt had this not been purchased, when his wife died.


Main House

The six-story main house is European palaces and castles of the 16th century, especially the castles on the " Romantic Rhine " between Bonn and Koblenz, modeled. The house has 120 rooms and inside there is an elevator in the basement and a heated swimming pool. The walls are made of solid granite and decorated with ornaments of terracotta. From terracotta roof tiles are also of the house, which were replaced by new pans after the pattern of the old of the same material. The old roof was damaged too much and needed to be replaced. Despite the medieval appearance of the building has a building services on the state of the construction period. The large glass windows make the interior brighter and friendlier than its medieval role models.


The dovecote was the first annexe, which could build on the Heart Iceland Boldt. At that time they lived in a wooden house, which stood on the spot where now stands the main house. Parts of this building were brought to the demolition in 1899 after Wellesley Iceland, where they are still used. The dovecote was the first of the many towers on the island and is home to the top of a dovecote. This was part of Boldt's collection of rare birds.

Italian Garden

Part of the island was leveled; through the underground passage ( see below), a garden was created. These had to be piled up and secured with high walls earth. The garden is in contrast to the rather wild look of the island laid out geometrically. The gravel for the paths was imported from Italy ( in the water were at the wharf fallen overboard crates discovered with gravel and relevant inscriptions ). Before the ballroom is in the garden a fountain on a curved platform. From there, the view over the roof of the generator house on the St. Lawrence River.

Triumphal arch

The arch was designed by Roman models and is topped by three statues of deer. It was the gateway to the water and should serve as a representative entrance for guests who arrived by boat. There were also stones ready to decorate the way to the house on the left and right columns, which should support the roof on the way. The roof was never built and not set up the pillars. A drawbridge should result from this path to the path around the swan pond.

Alster Tower ( playhouse )

The Alster Tower was allegedly inspired by an old fort on the river Alster in Hamburg ( but he looks similar to any existing building still there ) and was the playhouse for the children of the Boldt. Meanwhile, it is assumed that the building was not planned, but has been improvised by the shape of the stones supplied. This also explains the completely irregular shape of the building, which resembles a crooked and crooked old fortification. George Boldt will personally be responsible for the shape of the building, as it would suit his eccentric personality. Boldt's wife Louise liked this building ( its completion, it still experienced ) a lot and has hand picked the ornaments for the clam space for the stairs and the balcony and is responsible for the bowling alley in the basement of the tower. During the construction of the main house, the Boldt family ( parents with son and daughter ) lived in this small outbuilding. The old wooden house was already torn down to make room for new construction.

Generator house

Boldt wanted to have electricity on the island. Therefore, a generator house was built with coal-fired steam boilers. Their waste heat served as heating for the main house. The generator house is on the grounds of noise and exhaust gases at the far end of the small island on an exposed rock. It looks like a castle and is connected to a stone arch bridge to the main island. The generator house has the tallest tower on the island with an illuminated clock tower with carillon. Since this tower is visible from afar, it is the true hallmark of Heart Iceland. The main house is hidden from the river behind trees.

Underground conduit

The underground passage was built around inventories and personnel from the pier to get into the main house, without the baggage is transported by the Italian garden and had to go. The passage also houses the central heating pipes and power cables from the generator house to the main house.


The boat house of the family is on the neighboring island Wellesley Iceland and now houses a museum of historical yachts. The boat house is so large that all three sailing yachts in the family and the big house boat Boldt could fit with standing masts. The doors of the boathouse are so heavy that they can be opened and closed only with engine power.

Entry from Canada

For boat tours of Canada from the entrainment of the passport and the boat operators available and fully completed visa waiver is mandatory. Both at Heart Iceland, as well as the return to Canada, the normal immigration and customs formalities along with related inspections are done. In particular, from the transportation of alcoholic beverages, cigarettes, etc. should be avoided. It must be applied for entry into the United States on this day trip across Canada in Europe without a visa for the USA. The state stamped on entry to Canada Canadian visa in the passport is sufficient.

In the whole area, drinking alcohol, and running is prohibited. Dogs must be kept on a short leash. Within the building is drinking, eating and smoking prohibited.