Sunday, November 1, 2009

Casa Feliz

Casa Feliz at 656 Park Avenue in Winter Park, offers free music in this intimate historic setting. When I stopped in Christine MacPhail was playing the harp.
The setting was peaceful and serene. The young family on the left spoke Spanish to Christine and she responded in kind making me feel like I was visiting a Spanish Hacienda.
Later another young couple with a 10 year old daughter entered and sat in front of me. During a break they approached Christine and they explained that they had asked the harpist to play during their wedding. Christine was overjoyed and remembered them immediately. The couple asked if Christine could play one of the songs from the wedding but the harpist could not remember the tune. She offered to burn a copy of the song when she got home and looked up the sheet music.
As I was leaving someone asked if they could see the sketch I had done. He asked if I was the artist who was on display upstairs. I said no but the question raised my curiosity so I wandered upstairs. The walls were lined with paintings by Don Sontag who painted the men involved in moving Casa Feliz. In 2001 the home was moved to its present site to save it from demolition. Moving the 750 ton home was a major engineering challenge. The renovated structure now functions as a home museum.
This free music series seems to be one of Orlando's best kept secrets. If you want a great way to wind down after a crazy week you should look up the music schedule on the Casa Feliz web site and enjoy this great music series.

Prints are available for each sketch for $250 and many originals can be purchased for $400. White museum grade shadow box frames are $100 more. You can e-mail Thor at


Pedro said...

Excellent job promoting Orlando's culture. I am always interested on your USk posts.
This Casa Feliz is originaly spanish or portuguese?

Mary Ann said...

Here's what I love about your blog. One day it's Truth or Dare at the Peacock Room and another it's harp at Casa Feliz. Disparate scenes. How cool.

Harpist Christine MacPhail said...

Thanks for this wonderful post and the lovely painting of me at my harp!! I have many photos of myself playing the harp, but this is the first time an artist has done a portrait. I love it. Thank you also for your kind words.

Thor said...

You are more than welcome.

Casa Feliz isn't that old a building but I suspect the title is Spanish.

Angela Roark, Assistant Director, Friends of Casa Feliz said...

Thanks so much for your post and sketch on Casa Feliz Historic Home Museum built in 1933 by renowned architect, James Gamble Rogers II. Rogers designed many of the buildings on the Rollins College campus along with extensive homes in the central Florida area.

We are open for rentals and currently very popular for weddings and receptions. Please visit our website at for more information.

Thor said...

Hey Angela,

I'll be in touch.