This beautiful french renaissance castle on Woodward Ave designed by Louis Kamper was the home of railroad and ship-building baron Col. Frank J. Hecker.In 1888, Hecker hired architect Louis Kamper and began construction on the mansion at Woodward Avenue at the corner of Ferry. The Col. Frank J. Hecker House, with 21,000 square feet, is an imposing example of French Châteauesque style based on the Château de Chenonceaux near Tours, France.Hecker used his home to host elaborate parties where he entertained luminaries such as presidents William McKinley and Rutherford B. Hayes.
The exterior of the home has large turrets at the corners, and Flemish dormers in the steep hip roof. Several bays project from the main body of the home, and wrapped around the whole is a balustraded, colonnaded loggia. A carriage house in the rear is clearly visible from Woodward. At one point this structure was converted into a concert hall capable of seating 200.
The interior has 49 rooms, including a large oak-paneled hall designed for large parties, an oval dining room done in mahogany, a lobby done in English oak, and a white and gold music room.The fireplaces were constructed of Egyptian Nubian marble and onyx and Italian Siena marble were used in the vestibules.
Hecker was friends with lumber baron David Whitney, who built another Woodward Avenue mansion.
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