Arizona offers many historic attractions where you can take tours. If you’re interested in checking out these types of attractions then you must see The Mystery Castle in South Phoenix. The story of this castle is sad but also shows the love a father had for his daughter. It was an interesting experience to go and view this Castle! There were many tourist in line for this.

Entrance to The Mystery Castle

They say that Boyce Luther Gulley moved to Arizona back in 1929 from Seattle, Washington. He moved once he received a diagnosis of tuberculosis. The cure that was given at that time was to move to Arizona because of the desert climate. Antibiotics were not created until the 1940’s. It was said that the Arizona desert climate offered health benefits for tuberculosis patients. He didn’t want to tell his family of his condition so he decided to run away and do some soul searching.

Big Patio/Balcony area

When he came to Phoenix, Arizona he decided to build the Mystery Castle for his daughter Mary Lou. This idea to build a castle was from his daughter. The story is that Boyce and his daughter Mary Lou used to build sand castles at a beach in the Seattle area. His little girl would cry every time the water would wash it away. She then asked her father that maybe one day he could build her a castle in a desert where there was no water to wash it away.


Boyce Luther Gulley decided to build this castle for his daughter which has thirteen fireplaces, eighteen rooms, balconies (parapets), and furnished with antiques from the southwest. He wasn’t able to share this with his family because he died in 1945. Mary Lou, his daughter and his wife Frances went to go live there once they were made aware it existed. She was an adult by the time she moved in.

Dining Area

People were interested in touring the castle so Mary Lou and her mother started giving tours for 25 cents in the 1940’s. The Mystery Caste got the attention from Life Magazine, HGTV Extreme Homes, The New York Times and many others. Mary Lou’s mother Frances passed away in 1970 and Mary Lou continued to show her castle to visitors that would come from all over the world until she passed in 2010. The Mystery Castle is still open for tours from October through May. There is a $10 fee per adult and $5 per child. It is open from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Thursday through Sunday. They only accept cash or checks to go in. This is located at 800 E. Mineral Rd. in Phoenix, Arizona. The website for The Mystery Castle is