Crowning glory restored to tower
A crown removed from a nearly century-old tower has been refurbished and returned after eight months.
The crown at the Manor House condominiums in Smith’s was removed after the tower was damaged during Hurricane Paulette last summer and reinstalled yesterday.
Anthony Montarsolo, the president of Manor House Property Limited, said: “We have a lot of history, a lot of respect for our past and we cherish our legacy and our heritage.
“But we also have to be incredibly innovative in finding ways to compete with the newer developments that are coming down the line.”
He added: “It’s been really fun to get back to old Bermuda with a crew of Bermudians who understand the heritage and the vernacular of building in Bermuda.
“I haven’t had any feedback yet, but I’m sure people would be delighted to see the crown back up.”
Mr Montarsolo said that some decorations were taken off the iron crown to make it lighter and that the tower was strengthened by support beams.
He said that the lobster and bee symbols, which represented the initials of the original owner, Ledyard Blair, had also been replaced with brass versions and a new lighting system had been installed.
Mr Montarsolo explained that the style was similar to what the crown would have looked like before it was rebuilt about 25 years ago.
He added that MHPL wanted to retain the heritage of the property and improve it.
Mr Montarsolo said: “We’re putting quite a lot of money and resources into preserving our past, but we are also investing into resources and upgrading tastefully where possible.”
Mr Montarsolo said that MHPL had also renovated a sun deck and terrace that overlooks Harrington Sound.
He added that other work included renovation of the dock and beach, as well as improvements to the tennis court and the installation of solar panels.
The Manor House was adapted from Deepdene Manor, built in 1926 by Mr Blair, an American banker, and wife Florence as a winter home.
Construction was completed in 1931, but Mr Blair refused to return to the house after his wife died that year.
The manor was bought in 1947 by Dorothy Vera Hunter and converted into condominiums after the property changed hands several times.