St Augustine is also home to the Villa Zorayda which is an exact scale replica of the Alhambra in Granada, not of the whole place, just one wing.
Built for a Boston millionaire in 1883, it was then owned by Alfred S Mussallem who was an authority on Egyptian antiquities. It’s an interesting place and at one point was a nightclub and casino, well until Florida banned gambling that is.
Inside is like stepping into a Moorish palace, ornately carved tables, lanterns, a sultans couch, Moorish style tracery, marquetry tables, a very comfortable looking harem swing (needless to say you couldn't actually try it out), an ancient carpet, complete with curse, even a roulette wheel from the buildings time as a casino. Photographs aren’t allowed inside, but it’s an interesting place to visit.
We, well I should say I, as by this time DB was all visited out, also visited the Gonzalez-Alvarez House, which is the oldest house in St Augustine.
Originally a one room building, the building was expanded and changed over the years, at one time the paymaster for the Dragoons owned the house and turned part of it into a bar, after he’d paid the soldiers they all trooped across to his bar and spent their money, a pretty nifty way to get a second income.
Historic St Augustine is a lovely place and we enjoyed the fact the unlike most American towns you can actually walk around instead of having to drive everywhere. Yet another place to added to our ‘to re-visit list’.
Have fun, we are!