Inside 'The Castle'
There is also Tiffany-style table lamp — featuring the Ravens' bird's head logo — above a leather chair in one corner that looks like a welcoming reading nook. A bronze statue of Johnny Unitas, a miniature version of the one at M&T Bank Stadium, adorns a granite coffee table nearby.

Above the fireplace is a nearly life-size portrait of the late owner Art Modell, painted by Zhuo Liang as a gift from Bisciotti when he took over the team in 2004, the year the training facility opened. On either side are orchids — purple, of course — and behind the reception desk is a three-dimensional bird's head rendered in stainless steel.

Bracketing the fireplace, glass cases house the AFC championship trophy and the Vince Lombardi Super Bowl trophy from the victory in 2001. There will have to be some redecorating if the Ravens defeat the San Francisco 49ers in the Super Bowl on Feb. 3.

Art is everywhere in the building — several hundred thousand dollars' worth — and it, too, begins in the lobby with "Ready to Rumble," an oil painting by Julie Chapman of three ravens looking sinister against an angry red-and-purple sky.

Portraits of Ravens greats and great moments in oils or pastels line the halls of the second floor, where the coaches and administrative staff work. A grand staircase, paneled in cherry wainscoting, leads to the offices.

A stainless-steel rendering of a player in action is mounted at the end of each hallway. Scerba says that's how she finds her way around the complex — by remembering to turn left at the kicker.

The coaches' offices each have their own balconies overlooking the outdoor practice field. Modell's office is intact, with leopard-patterned carpet and ruby-and-gold floor-length window coverings. Below is a stone patio with super-sized seating overlooking the practice field, an inviting place for players and staff to have lunch in warm weather.

And the Ravens treat their staff as well as they treat their players. There are locker rooms and a special gym for women who might not want to throw weights around with the players. There are boot camp classes and yoga classes — former running back Ricky Williams was a certified yoga instructor.

Everywhere there are photographs, of Baltimore Colts as well as Ravens. A veritable history of football in Baltimore. Another hall is lined with pictures from each of Baltimore's victories — an image chosen by a vote of the players. Letters from children are taped to the windows of the players' cafeteria.

The locker room is off limits to visitors. The players' sanctum sanctorum, the lockers are arranged so that they can see each other, and it is probably their favorite place to hang out and relax, said Scerba. "There is always a pretty competitive cornhole game going on in there."

The Castle combines the best of a college campus with the best of a cozy retreat from the world.

"We all spend so much time here," said Scerba, "we wanted it to feel like a home away from home."

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