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  • Writer's pictureKB Interiors and Events

Tea with a Princess surrounded by a dark history

As I searched for potential event venues, Provender House near Faversham in Kent is one that caught my eye. So I contacted the owner and arranged a visit.

The owner of the house greeted me, made me a cup of tea and then we sat down to discuss the charming venue. The lady began to talk about her property, her family and the history surrounding what she calls her home.

Turns out the rather eccentric lady that I was sitting having a cup of tea and a chat with was in fact Princess Olga Andreevna Romanoff, a Russian Princess and descendant from the house of Romanov.

The name rang a bell but probably from watching Disney’s Anastacia as a child but for most of you that listened in history, unlike me who used history lessons to catch up on sleep, you would have probably heard of the Romanov family who ruled Russia and their devastatingly tragic past with most of the Romanov family being slaughtered by Bolshevik captors.

Princess Olga’s father Prince Andrei Alexandrovich who was the eldest nephew of the murdered last Tsar Nicholas II escaped, fled Russia and went into exile.

Prince Andrei came to settle at Provender House as it was owned by the family of his second wife, Olga’s Mother Nadine McDougall. Princess Olga proceeded to take me on a tour of the breathtaking mansion dating back to the 13th Century.

The mansion has been lovingly restored with the help of Ptolemy Dean revealing charming original period features in each room.

The grand entrance hall oozes character and captivates you the moment you enter the property. This area would hold 5 round tables and has a wood burning stove to heat the area in winter months. The front room leading off of the hall is 17th century. It has a very impressive fireplace and the table extends to seat 12 people.

The oak room below is a beautifully historic room. The walls are adorned with stunning paintings of Princess Olga’s famous family including one of the last Tsar Nicolas II. The grand table seats 16.

Upstairs leads to the 13th century vaulted room. the vaulted ceiling is a masterpiece in itself. This room holds approximately 50 people for a reception or the table seats 6 for a wonderful intimate dinner.

There are many other rooms including the drawing room and the rather impressive library that possess the wow factor.

From May onwards one of the real gems of the property comes into its own. The walled garden is simply beautiful. The ideal place for a drinks reception with the possibility of erecting a marquee. The area is fully lit and has the most stunning backdrop of the property allowing you to see the full aspect of the house and the architecture ranging from the 13th through to the 17th century.

Although this property may not be best suited to a wedding it would certainly provide an extremely interesting venue for corporate events, intimate dinners or drink reception events.

Maybe not if you don’t like ghosts or spiders.

Even if you don’t get the opportunity to have an event here. Princess Olga hosts tours herself throughout the year. The photos simply don’t do the mansion justice and I would extremely recommend visiting. However unlike me maybe do your research on the family beforehand so you can really appreciate it’s history.

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