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Luxury Living: Homes with a fairytale flavour

If you've ever fantasised about living in a medieval castle in Italy or an Arabian palace near Marrakesh, one of these 5 enchanting private estates might be the one for you — all from Christie’s International Real Estate

Palace Arsa is an Arabian-inspired palace on more than 17 acres, just 10 miles outside the Old City of Marrakesh. The one-of-a-kind estate features a 29,062-square-foot main villa with nine bedrooms and two suites, grandly scaled reception rooms, a hammam, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, a tennis court, and pétanque court. A second villa offers an additional 10,225 square feet of living space and five additional guest suites. The idyllic gardens are planted with 150 olive trees and 200 palm trees, a vegetable garden, and formal Japanese garden. Stables, two wells, and an additional 14.8 acres of land with planning permission are further highlights of this spectacular property.

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This enchanting medieval castle between Milan and Parma dates from 1219. Listed as a national monument by ADSI (the Italian Historic Houses Association), the current structure was rebuilt in 1447 with the addition of a loggia and frescoes in 1600. The castle, cellars, and ancillary buildings have been restored and encompass roughly 25,000 square feet of interior space and nearly 2.5 acres of outdoor space, including balconies, terraces, and tranquil grounds, situated at the edge of a medieval village in the foothills of a natural park.

This medieval keep (also pictured top) is the sole remaining vestige of an 11th-century castle. Standing 19 metres high with 3-metre-thick stone walls, the unique stone structure was converted into a dwelling in the late 19th century and later remodelled into a luxury residence by the current owner. An adjacent Mansard-style pavilion built in the late 19th century offers a further 1,539 square feet of living space with four bedrooms and two bathrooms. The property has a tranquil, private setting on a third of an acre of walled gardens in a village just 45 kilometres outside Paris.

This charming Portuguese palace in the heart of Lisbon’s Príncipe Real quarter was built circa 1899. The original architectural details include a stately coral-hued façade, a roof dome, and a four-story turret with a spire. The fully restored interiors offer more than 11,000 square feet of living space with elegant reception and dining rooms, a well-equipped kitchen, office, cinema, indoor pool, gym, and spa. The accommodations include two guest suites, a full-floor master suite with Jacuzzi and spectacular views of Lisbon, and a separate guest/staff annex set within the grounds.

Castle Ladyhawke was built by its current owner in 2005 as a faithful replica of the castles of the Scottish Borders. Great care was taken to ensure historical accuracy. Many of the antiques, ornate tapestries and rugs, and elaborately carved furniture were collected during the owner’s travels to Scotland. A 14th-century mantelpiece found a new home above the great-room fireplace, while the stained-glass windows that adorn many of the rooms were salvaged from various churches. The castle is surrounded by more than 46 acres of wooded and landscaped grounds framed by the Blue Ridge Mountains.