Castle Builder

Ricky Ginder of South Daytona with his children Erika, 10, and Waylynn, 4, stand in front of the their soon to be completed castle on Sauls Road in South Daytona recently.

Everyone knows the saying “my home is my castle.”

But what if the home is literally a castle? In South Daytona, medieval times are returning for the Ginder family as they create their dream castle home.

The 10,000-square-feet, three-story castle in the making is at 2821 Sauls Road. Owner/builder Ricky Ginder, who currently lives nearby in Port Orange, hopes his family of seven can move in to at least the second floor by Christmas. The residents will be Ricky, his wife Gena, their two adult daughters, Danielle and Jessica, and three grandchildren Ericka, Waylynn and Noah.

Upon completion the home will have seven bedrooms, six bathrooms and will be complete with turrets, a high sloped roof, a two-story library, and other amenities to make anyone walking or driving by think they have returned to the middle ages.

A stone gated entrance is already in place that contains a storage room hidden on one end and a working bathroom on the other, complete with shower. The property sits on about two acres and contains live oaks that are more than 100 years old, with a working hive of bees taking refuge in one of them. The next step is creating the roof trusses.

The Ginders have owned the property since 2011, but decided to start building last year, beginning with the decorative wall. Mr. Ginder, who owns Designerick (cabinets and custom woodwork), is building the castle himself along with friends who do carpentry, concrete, etc. He also designed it.

“Once everything is dried in (roof on), all the interior finishing I can do myself,” he said. “I don’t think the project will ever be totally done here. I think this is something my family can continue on. I wanted to build something they can develop.

“As an artist, this is a huge palette to work with, not only the home but the property,” Mr. Ginder said. “I don’t think I will accomplish everything I want to here in my lifetime, but at least if I set the groundwork for everything, the family can continue until it is built out.”

Future plans may include a pool.

“My granddaughter (Ericka, 10) and I were cutting the lawn one day and we always talked about what we wanted to build and she always kept saying she wanted a castlem” Mr. Ginder said. “She grew up going to Disney. I started researching it and looking at books and trying to figure which style I wanted to do. So, we decided on the old English/Scottish look. My grandson, Waylynn, is going to be the prince of the castle where Ericka is going to be the princess in the castle and they have worked here. They love it.”

He added, “It’s just a house and something I think the family name will have forever. That’s the plan anyway.

“A lot of the delay is making sure we do it right and do it to last. I want my kids to be able to be here generations after I am gone,” Mr. Ginder said. “This will be the hub for which the family grows and there will always be a home for the children. That is why I wanted to have so many bedrooms, because things happen in life.”

The City of South Daytona had to approve the wall, which is now complete with statues and ocean figures.

Mr. Ginder joked, “If I had a dollar for every person that stopped and asked us questions, I would probably have my roof on now.”

The castle is all block construction with cultured stone. The main metal roof will be 14-12 pitch meaning for every 12 inches in width it is 14 inches in slope. You can’t stand on it as it will be very steep. There will be towers as well and the decks will be solid concrete. He intentionally made the bedrooms the same size for the grandchildren, so they “wouldn’t battle as to who got what.” Mr. Ginder said he is really looking forward to his new neighbors.

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