It’s taken a while to appear, but the Community Centre for the Linden Homes Fantasy theme has opened within the Bellisseria sub-continent established for the theme. And not only does it form a community city, it sits on the region found at the end of the sea crossing that links the sub-continent to the rest of Bellisseria; and area I had noted as needing a little TLC when I first made the crossing – well, now I know why!
Given its position, this is perhaps the most visually impressive of all of the community centres that have accompanied the deployment of each major Linden Home theme; whilst not in any way specifically “Tolkien” in style, with its piers extending out into the waters of the crossing, and the way it climbs to stand above the surrounding houses, it does tend to bring thoughts of Cirdan and the Grey Havens to mind when arriving.
The piers splay outward finger-like from a landing point that sits as a broad piazza at the foot the the grand stairway that leads up to the centre itself, which is a truly magnificent structure. At the top of the stairway are two tall-roofed pavilions that might at first be taken as guardians to the rest of the building as they stand on either side of the stairs. However, they are far from being built for defensive purposes: one offers comfortable seating for fellowship and the other a vignette scene that might be used for photographic purposes – but whether this had been placed as a part of the dressing for a wedding celebration so recently held at the centre, I’ve no idea.
Beyond the pavilions a bridge spans the waters of the channel that encircles the centre, reaching out to join with further stairs that rise to the main building. The first part of this might be seen as a reception area, two larger open-sided pavilions sitting before the entrance to main hall, each with a curving stair that climbs to the terraces that flank the sides of the hall. Open to the sky, these terraces are themselves marked by the sweeping forms of two great stone arms that curve outward from the towers of the hall’s main entrance and then back to meet with its egg-like domed roof.
At the time of my visit, this circular hall was still set out for the aforementioned wedding, a nicely ornate alter and walk in a decidedly elven theme (as seen in the 2nd image in this article). I’ve no idea how long this will remain at the centre, but it certainly fits the overall theme. With or without it, lit as it is by a mix of candles, lanterns and glowing tubers, and with runes glowing along stonework, the hall – the building as a whole – is a place that has a genuinely magical feel to it, something that is enhanced by the local soundscape, making a visit both breath-taking when first encountering it, and also restful.
This is also a place with a hidden secret. Below it, and reached via the encircling waters (which also connects it to the rivers of the continent), is a carven of glowing crystals that only lacks one or two seating spots to make it a perfect cosy hideaway.
I have always enjoyed exploring the various community centres around Bellisseria. Each one has (obviously) had its own particular look to match the general theme in which it sits, and its own points of interest; however, as noted above, there is something particularly attractive / enchanting about this one that does mark it as a place that both impresses and leaves the imagination stirred.
Note: at the time of my visit, the centre was under the cover of night; as such, I opted to use a selection of daytime EEP settings to offer views of it in daylight.
- Fantasy Home Community Centre (Eyrie, rated Moderate)