Culture

Cat In Residence — The Curious Story of Duncan at the Mansion

The Rosewood Hotel's Famous Feline Shares Her Fabulous Tale

BY As Told To Rebecca Sherman // 11.14.23
photography Madi Hurley

When a stray Russian Blue arrived without a reservation at Dallas’ famous Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek Hotel in 2011, the staff came to her rescue. Like her fictional counterpart, Eloise at The Plaza, Duncan the cat is adorably mischievous — while capturing everyone’s hearts.

I am Duncan … I am a city cat. I live at The Mansion on Turtle Creek. Curiously, despite my name, I am actually a girl. There is a lobby, which is enormously large with marble floors and stylish people bustling around I spend an awful lot of time at the valet stand watching people get out of cars and go in. The valets, the concierge, Ms. Stamm, the manager, Ms. Gates, and my friend Tracy all know who I am and my story.

Duncan the Mansion Cat, illustrated by Madi Hurley
Duncan the Mansion Cat, illustrated by Madi Hurley

I wandered into the hotel 12 years ago and never checked out … Often people stop to pet me … sometimes they bring treats. The chef is forbidden to feed me leftovers… if a bite of Peking duck breast or parmesan-crusted halibut is proffered, I’ll never tell.

Duncan the Mansion Cat, illustrated by Madi Hurley
Duncan the Mansion Cat, illustrated by Madi Hurley

I’m told some people find cats a nuisance, but au contraire! … not the children who wriggle from their parents’ grasp to play with me… and not the Dalai Lama, who has blessed me… and surely not Karl Lagerfeld, who once stayed for a week and renamed me Coco. He let me play with Choupette, his blue-cream tortie Birman, an obvious aristo-cat who had her own room. When the famous couturier offered to take me back to Paris with him, I declined.

Duncan the Mansion Cat, illustrated by Madi Hurley

People around the world send me gifts like beds and bowls. Alas! Still no sapphire necklaces to complement my Russian Blue fur, or emerald earrings to set off my mysterious green eyes. A girl can dream …

Duncan the Mansion Cat, illustrated by Madi Hurley
Duncan the Mansion Cat, illustrated by Madi Hurley

I live on the very, very, very ground floor, and if I want to go on an adventure, I hop inside a car … or ride on the room-service cart hidden under a big silver dome, like I did to sneak into Christian Louboutin’s room to borrow a pair of GINORMOUS heels. Once, when Lady Gaga lifted the dome expecting to find her favorite coconut water smoothie, she found me instead!

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210 DDpreview 1 (Photo by Madi Hurley)
Duncan the Rosewood Mansion Cat, illustrated by Madi Hurley

I nap near the front awning on an elaborate American Girl brass bed with white linens and bolsters. There’s so much to do… tomorrow I think I’ll nap some more.

In front (Photo by Madi Hurley)
Duncan the cat at the Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek. See our slideshow for more photos of the real-life Duncan. (photo courtesy)

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