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Hogwarts heaven: J.K. Rowling to build 40-foot tree houses for her kids



The plans for J.K. Rowling's tree houses include balconies, lanterns and cedar roofs made from sustainable wood.

J.K. Rowling brought a fantasy world of witchcraft and wizardry to millions of children (and adults) with her beloved Harry Potter series. Now the best-selling author's two youngsters will live out a fantasy of their own — and they won't have to rely on just their imaginations.

Rowling’s husband, Dr. Neil Murray, has applied for permission to construct two 40-foot tree houses in the garden of the couple's 17th century Edinburgh mansion. Plans for the children’s private escape were submitted to the City of Edinburgh Council earlier this month and illustrate the tricked out tree castles, which will reportedly cost over $200,000.


The fantasy playground will be made complete with a double swing set, stainless steel slide and an attached trampoline.

If the plans are approved, the author’s younger children, David, 9, and Mackenzie, 7, will soon enjoy a Hogwarts-like playground sure to be the envy of every kid on the block. (Her older daughter, Jessica, is 18, but presumably she'll enjoy them as well who wouldn't!) The two-story tree houses have medieval flourishes like conical turrets and will be connected by a rope bridge.

The plans contain a few magical elements that Rowling is known for in her fiction. David’s tree house includes a secret tunnel underneath the entrance ramp for quick exits and a fireman’s pole around back. But Mackenzie needn’t be jealous — her house will be built with a trap door and rope ladder tucked away inside. An owl (inspired by Hedwig, perhaps) will watch over the siblings' roosts, while a basket and pulley will ensure they won’t have to descend from their towers on stilts.


50-foot cypress hedges will shield the tree houses from neighbors' eyes.

According to the plans, the tree houses were designed by Blue Forest, a luxury tree house construction company. Blue Forest builds 3 to 4 family tree houses per month, Simon Payne, one of the company’s founders, told TODAY.com. And Rowling’s project is by no means the most unusual they’ve seen — a former (grown-up) client requested a 12-inch door be built with her tree house so fairies could enjoy the space as well.


Rowling's tree houses must first be approved by a committee because the structures are over 13 feet high from roof to base.

Work on Rowling’s luxury tree houses cannot begin until officers on the Council have considered the application. Six people must object to the application for it to require approval from the Edinburgh Planning Committee, Sara McGuire, a representative from the Council’s office told TODAY.com.

If all goes to plan, J.K. Rowling might soon be fulfilling a parental fantasy as the coolest mom in town.


This isn't the first time Rowling has redesigned her backyard. Last year she was given permission to tear down a neighboring house to expand her own garden.

What do you think about Rowling’s tree houses? If could build your dream tree house, what would it look like?

Already have one? Share photos of your own below!

Danika Fears is a TODAY.com intern who would be inclined to build a tree house of her own if she didn't live in the heart of Manhattan, where trees are scarce.


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