In a 360 degrees change, we departed the Mediterranean-themed “minsu” in Hualien and arrived at a Castle-themed “minsu” in Yilan - 聖￼荷缇城堡 (Saint-Holland). While the complex is more like a mansion than a castle, every other aspect do seek to replicate the posh atmosphere of a castle, such as the marble pillars and fountain in the front, and the garden in the backyard.
Upon arrival on a rainy late afternoon, we were welcomed by the lady owner taking care of the “minsu”. Impressed with the elaborate decor just as we stepped foot in the house, we were first introduced to the living room, which had a bar, dining table, a corner for reading and watching TV and surprisingly a full size pool table.
The lady owner told us that the pool table was installed to keep the guests entertained indoors in times of rainy weather. It sure came into good use as Yilan is one of the rainiest regions of Taiwan and the day we arrived was no exception.
There are a total of 5 rooms in Saint-Holland, and we booked the two rooms which were on the ground floor. The smaller “Molly Dante” room (green) was taken by my brother and cousin, while Tiantian and I took the “William Muldoon” room (pink).
If the living room wasn’t amazing enough, the bathroom we had was stunning. It has an area probably as large as our bedroom itself, equipped with a 42″ plasma TV and not one, but two spa pools (a big one for watching TV, and another one facing the window)!
Despite having passed tea-time, our tea-time snacks were kept for us nonetheless, comprising of fruits, cakes and garlic bread served in a 3-layer cake stand. Owing to the rainy weather, we stayed indoors playing pool and exploring the house for a while, before leaving in the night for Luodong Night Market.
Besides those aspects of Saint Holland “minsu” which you can see in the photos below, there is also a Karaoke room on the second floor, but only available for use if one books the entire “minsu”. Rooms facing the backyard also comes with a large balcony facing a well-maintained garden. Too bad we didn’t get a chance to enjoy the backyard due to the rainy weather! :(
However, the one qualm we have was the detached location of the “minsu” – we had much trouble locating the place even with the help of experienced taxi drivers. Nevertheless, if you are not driving and wish to visit other parts of Yilan during your stay, the lady owner will assist in arranging taxis to fetch you out and back to the “minsu”.
Tiantian and I love the elegant and luxurious flair represented in each and every aspect of Saint Holland “minsu”. Perhaps due to high construction cost, not many “minsu”s try to replicate the grand, European-style feel. But this one has sure paid off, as it has since been used as the filming location for various Taiwanese idol dramas and resulted in its increasing popularity.