Visitors to England can now get the royal treatment — literally. Earl Charles Spencer, brother of Princess Diana, has turned their childhood digs into a bed-and-breakfast.
More than fit for a king (and his extended family), the Althorp Estate’s 90-room mansion boasts 30 or so bedrooms, a handful of formal dining rooms and a library crammed with antique books.
To stay there, though, you may need a king’s ransom. Weekend visits run $40,000 per couple sharing a bedroom, and $250,000 for a gang of 18.
But the money goes to a good cause: Whole Child International, a nonprofit that helps orphaned children in developing countries. It’s a pet charity of Spencer’s third and current wife, Countess Karen Spencer.
Still, there looms anticipation that opening the 13,000-acre estate will get tongues wagging. “I’m sure there will be people saying, ‘How can they do that?’ and ‘It’s lowering themselves,’ ” Spencer told NBC News. “It’s not. I always thought of this house as contributing. It’s not just a little bastion or fortress of privilege.”
Whatever the case, some well-heeled overnighters will have the opportunity to sleep in Diana’s old bedroom. According to the Daily Mail, there will also be days of “entertainment and conversation” along with a black-tie banquet for guests.
Anyone who gets bored with the “Downton Abbey” vibe can while away time in the mansion’s gallery, which contains works by Leonardo Da Vinci and includes portraits of Diana.
As Spencer told NBC: “This house has always had an affinity for glamorous ladies.”