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The Nesbitt Castle – The Old Lady in her Youth

Posted in: Hotel, Zimbabwe Tourism
The Nesbitt Castle – The Old Lady in her Youth

The Nesbitt Castle is full of history and intrigue. Building commenced around 1910, and her construction took years.

Holdengarde's castle c. 1936-7

Built by Theodore Albert Edward Holdengarde, no plans were laid out for the building, no architectural drawings; nothing submitted to the council for approval, just a collection of distant memories, a practical disposition and a romantic dream. Making this achievement even more noteworthy was the fact that Holdengarde was only a weekend builder.

Holdengarde's castle c.1936

As a true eccentric and in keeping with his medieval concept, he refused to have electricity, piped water or a telephone in the Castle much to the chagrin of his wife and growing modern family. Maude Holdengarde his gracious and loyal spouse eventually had electricity installed by squirreling away her housekeeping money and waiting until Thomas was away in South Africa at a conference! Running water, flush toilets and a telephone were only installed after Thomas’ death in 1948.

The Holdengarde’s private residence was transformed into the The Nesbitt Castle Hotel in 1990, the building itself still stands in all her glory – a unique accommodation experience, a boutique hotel like no other in Zimbabwe.