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Perfect Last-Minute Valentine's Present? A Fairy Tale Castle

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In case the chocolates and flowers and Hallmark commercials haven't reminded you yet: it's Valentine's Day! But fear not, last minute shoppers, Curbed has the perfect gift guide for the wealthy procrastinator, five romantic castles to make your Valentine's fairy tale dreams come true. The first is this French fortress, set on 168 private acres in Aquitaine and listed for more than $6.7M. Begun in the 15th century and substantially expanded in the 17th, this stone redoubt now measures nearly 13,000 square feet, with seven bedrooms, a pool house, a guest house, two independent guest apartments, a caretaker's house, and, to make an equestrian dream come true, a horse farm with indoor arena.


? It may lack the history of the Renaissance-era castle, but this 19th-century chateau in Normandy lies within easy striking distance of Paris and has been recently renovated to an impecable condition. The 5,300-square-foot main house sits amid 67 acres of rolling countryside, with old growth trees and even a pond where a family of swans takes up seasonal residence. Listed for $6.33M, the stately summer home is being sold by the estate of the late owner.


? This sprawling compound is one of the most impressive properties available in the land of every wannabe expat's dreams, Tuscany. Known as Villa dei Satiri, the majestic main house traces its history to 1366, when a prominent Florentine family appropriated an existing fortress as their palace. The noble villa built atop the fortress ruins measures a whopping 32,000 square feet and includes wall after wall of stunning trompe l'oeil frescoes. The grounds were extended in the 17th century and now includes the 6,700-square-foot "Summer House" designed by Diodati, a farmhouse, a restaurant, an original thermal bath house, and the modern "Butterfly House," a glassy structure built into the ruins and used to reproduce a tropical environment. Such swoon-worthy amenities weren't going to be cheap. The compound is listed for $25.35M.


? Why get your Valentine a box of Swiss chocolates when he or she could be treated to this Swiss castle instead? Well, for one, because the castle costs millions. Located near the lakeside city of Neuchâtel, this 17th-century castle boasts just about every quaint castle feature one could desire. Drawbridge? Check. Turrets? Check. Opulent interiors? Check. The chapel is illuminated by stained glass, while the former dungeon has been converted into three comfortable guest suites.


? Castle fans need not make the pilgrimage to Europe to enjoy a private fortress. This former National Guard armory in Upstate New York has been converted to residential use, with six bedrooms, seven bathrooms, and two kitchens. Many of the original features remain, however, like the cavernous former "drill shed," locker room, and attached garage. Best of all, the 36,000-square-foot space is listed for just $1M.

· Dordogne [Emile Garcin]
· Pont l'Eveque [Emile Garcin]
· Villa dei Satiri [Casa Italia]
· Historical Castle [Sotheby's International Realty]
· Upstate Castle [Sotheby's International Realty]