OLD CITY HOUSE INN & RESTAURANT
From Stables to Tables!
This area of the walled Colonial City has been continuously occupied since the 16th century and represents the location of the original 1565 settlement of St. Augustine. All structure in the area were destroyed during the 1702 attack by the South Carolinians. However, by the mid-1700′s the Rosario defense line had been erected along the street we’re now on (Cordova St.) and extended through the Old City House property.
The Old City House, originally constructed in 1873, is an excellent example of Spanish Colonial Revival architecture. The coquina stone facade on the Old City House, was built from coquina found on the site, probably remnants from the Sentry station which existed here to guard the S-W corner of the walled city. Legend has it that a ghost of a Spanish Soldier still guards the archway, unaware that he was killed by the misfire of his own musket.
Holmes Ammidown (1801-1883), a wealthy merchant from Boston and New York built the Ammidown Mansion where the parking lot now is, and the Old City House originally served as it’s stable. When the mansion was destroyed by fire, the stable served the Flagler hotels.
For the last 10 years, Old City House has been a B&B and renowned restaurant and has just undergone significant renovations to the rooms and restaurant to recapture its Mediterranean feel. The rooms now reflect romantic “Old Cities” such as Venice and Paris as well as themes of “Out of Africa” and “Passage to India.”
The renowned restaurant features a personal selection of global cuisine, including the freshest seafood, Mediterranean, Indian, and Thai dishes. The extensive global wine list, many offered by the glass, afford you the opportunity to pair the wine with the food to further enhance your dining experience.
After dinner, there is no better way to round off the perfect evening than a glass of port or brandy while relaxing in the overstuffed leather sofa in front of the fire in their cozy restaurant!
Owners/Operators: James and Ilse Philcox
James and Ilse Philcox
About the owners……James, a Civil Engineer, born in England, moved to the USA at age 9, completed his Masters at the University of Maryland, worked as an engineer in Boston, Cape Cod, and New York City. Tired of corporate life, he had a dream of owning a restaurant.
Ilse…, born in South Africa, was originally trained as a Neonatal ICU Nurse. After receiving her Marketing Degree from the University of Cape Town, Ilse worked extensively for the Pharmaceutical industry. Immigrating to the USA at age 29, she slowly developed a dream of moving to St. Augustine and owning a small B&B.
Two and a half years ago Ilse moved to St. Augustine, met James who had just moved from Boston, fell in love, were married 6 months later, bought the “Old City House Inn & Restaurant,” and after extensive renovations and endless hard work, are starting to live their dream together!