Jack and Sonja Brock found the perfect spot to retire in Bourbon County but their dream home needed work.
Ten years after renovations began on Airy Castle, they still aren’t done but the Brocks don’t regret it because their keeping the history with the house.
Sonja Brock remembers a foot of water in the basement, raccoons living in the attic and the roof had holes but she still thought it was a beautiful house.
Airy Castle was built in 1873, after updates in the 1950s, she saw it about ten years ago and knew it was the one they should buy.
The Brocks were planning on retiring from the medical field in New Mexico. They had been searching for retirement property with land for their horses and planned on building a new home.
“The house kind of speaks to me and it was kind of desperate,” said Sonja.
Her and her husband put an offer on the house but it didn’t pass any inspections. About a week later Sonja saw it again and her mind was made up.
“She stood in the driveway crying with tears coming from her eyes and said it's this place or no place,” said her husband Jack.
The Brocks bought the neglected house.
“I think some people were going to buy it and tear it down which would have just been a travesty,” said Sonja.
After a decade of renovations the home is still 95% original and they’ve brought in antiques for an authentic décor.
“Those pieces were very beautiful, they can't be rebuilt or recreated again so it is important to save the furniture and furnishings of the period,” said Jack.
‘’The thing is you just don't have this level of craftsmanship anymore,” said Sonja.
They plan to keep the craftsmanship and the lessons of the past alive in the walls of the home.
“It’s an important part of the history, the history of the country, the history of the state and the history of the people,” said Jack.
Although there are still renovations to be complete and new projects and repairs come up, they cherish taking care of the home like a parent raises a child.
You say the child should be grateful and sometimes but it's really you who are grateful to the child for what they give you,” said Sonja.
The Brocks plan to open a bed and breakfast once renovations are complete.
The home will be open for tours to benefit Historic Paris-Bourbon County.
The Open House is Sunday, October 20th from 2-5 PM. Their home is located at 368 Larue Road, Paris, KY.
Cost: $10 members of Historic Paris-Bourbon County/$15 non-members. Tickets are available at the home the day of the open house.