A little over a month ago, we sent out the notice: We were looking for your schools' finest dens of debauchery. Your sticky-floored palaces. Your NRHP-ruiners. The places where the wet bar is always stocked, but no one has checked to see if the asbestos has been cleared out. Where girls can be found coming and going at all hours of the night, and you can watch them do so from a turret. Where the whiskey flows, and the Busch Lite chases.
Your 30 Best Frat Castles, in so many words.
To complete this list, we scoured schools' webpages, asked around at a few schools, and consulted Greek Life conduct boards to see who was on their best behavior. (Just kidding.)
Additionally, over 50 of you emailed to submit your own houses, and because this was the best source of info in a small pool, this list will probably be slanted more toward those who sent in tips. There's only so many campus police reports we can read.
Alright, crack open the cheapest beer you can find. Let's go.
30. Phi Gamma Delta, Vermont
Your Take: “The house was built under 'French Second Empire' style in 1877 for General William Wells, who was not only the fastest rising Union general in the Civil War but received a medal of honor for his bravery at the Battle of Gettysburg. The house sits right on Main Street Burlington, VT; right between campus and the bars. The halls and widows watch of this four story frat castle have seen many things over the years. Some of the amenities include a purple felt pool table, black and white marble floors complete with a black diamond, a very classy personalized ruit table, and a roof with the best view in Burlington.”
Our Take: We kick things off with an unusual choice—a small, untraditional house from an untraditionally Greek school. Why pick it? For one, it looks sweet. For another, it’s the oldest house on the list. And with a location right on Main Street, it’s always an easy decision whether to keep raging in the house or hit up the local bar.
29. Sigma Alpha Epsilon, Arizona
Your Take: “The open courtyard lets us rage in many different ways, whether it is a saturday afternoon tailgate or swimming in jungle party at the end of the year. The courtyard is always stocked with hot chicks and plastic vodka.” -- Ryan, Arizona
“The first picture shows our house on a normal day out here in Arizona. Due to the great weather Tucson usually has over the course of the year, the sunsets illuminate the sky providing beautiful scenery. Our house was established onto this campus in 1917. Therefore our 100th reunion will coming up in the next few years which we are excited about. We have 17 rooms in which two people have their own room but share a bathroom and common room. We are the only fraternity on campus with the living style where one has their own room.
This is a picture before our Jungle Party we had spring semester last year. We transformed our house( from the 1st picture to this one) in about a month to throw one of the biggest pool parties that any school has ever seen. You can hear the women of the U of A explain this event as "the best day of my life". The amount of time and dedication put forth into this project is indescribable and we would like to thank everyone who helped. We are in process to start planning Jungle Party for this spring semester however, we can't make any promises that it will 100 percent will happen just yet.” -- Sam, Arizona
Our Take: Many fraternities across the country boast a pool. That pool is normally clean for the first month and then will ultimately devolve into looking like the Hudson River by the end of the year. Arizona’s SAE house has the climate (and the motivation), at least, to keep theirs active all year long. Somewhere, a kid who went to Cornell sheds a tear.
28. Phi Gamma Delta, Alabama
Your Take: None.
Our Take: It’s around 30 degrees in New York today. A sweltering Alabama day spent underneath that awning looks SUPERB right now.
27. Omicron Pi, Clarkson
Your Take: “Omicron Pi Omicron was established in 1903 as the first fraternity at Clarkson University in Potsdam, NY. It is a local fraternity meaning that it is the only ΟΠΟ(O Pi O) in the world and that we are not governed by pussy national organization. In addition we have remained a secret organization since the beginning. These attributes allow us to practice the same traditions as our brothers many years ago. Our fraternity purchased our mansion with our own money and between active brothers and alumni have been maintaining and running shit ever since 1958. WITHOUT THE SUPPORT OF A NATIONAL. This house was originally built in 1856 and previously owned by a prominent family in the 19th century. There is some crazy history attached to it. Two other fraternities at Clarkson used to be owned by the same family as our house and each had secret underground tunnels connecting all three of them, thought to be part of the Underground Railroad. YES WE HAVE PROOF. We have 16 rooms that all are unique, not one room is the same as another. 3 of the rooms are so well hidden(behind book cases, stairs, trunks, ect.) that only brothers know they exist.” -- Alex, Clarkson
Our Take: We kind of love the triumphant “screw you” attitude Omnicron Pi Omnicron has taken toward national organizations (which gives it a high ranking), as well as the sheer amount of secret rooms their house holds. It’s like the mansion from “Clue.”
26. Sigma Phi Epsilon, Virginia Tech
Your Take: “The first house of the new VT expansion. It cost 5 MILLION dollars to build. It’s located on a golf course right across the street from the best sororities at Tech.” -- Adam, Virginia Tech
Our Take: The old business adage “Location, location, location” also, interestingly, applies to fraternity houses. The VT Sig Ep house is located on a spot where you can walk nine and then ogle coeds for your own 19th hole. Location, location, location.
25. Sigma Chi, Alabama
Your Take: “In the back is a big courtyard connected to a band room with a bar, stage, and speaker system.” -- Chris, Alabama
Our Take: Simply put, this place is massive (as many frat castles in the South are). The Sig Chi’s pad is special, though, thanks to its own band room in the courtyard. For many bros south of the Mason-Dixon, there are few things better than an outdoor country concert.
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