Bottle Houses, Prince Edward Island
After seeing the national park along the north shore I decided to head back to Nova Scotia so I made my way south to the bridge, which is the other, western connection to the mainland. Right before I left the island however I discovered there were bottle houses. I’ve always loved the aesthetics of up-cycling and most especially mosaics, but after visiting the Bottle Chapel when I was in North Carolina I have been aching to see more structures like that. So I passed the bridge and continued west.
The three structures on Prince Edward Island were hand-built by a retired gentleman Eduoard Arsenault from 1980 to 1984 with over 25,000 bottles after he was inspired by seeing a post card. I can only hope to be so industrious in my retirement: He spent winters cleaning bottles and removing labels, and the warmer months building the structures with cement – one per year. The first building is just called the house, and is constructed of 12,000 bottles. The second structure is a chapel, and the third is a tavern, both made with approximately 8,000 bottles each. Because Arsenault was a fisherman, carpenter, and a lighthouse keeper – and not an artist – the houses can’t really be compared to the Bottle Chapel in Wilmington, but they stand as a testament to his dedication in fulfilling his dream. And for that alone, they are worth a visit.