Over the years I have driven past “the castle”, this time I stayed overnight at San Simeon, the castle was only 4 miles out and little reason to give it a miss. I had little time, the tour was abridged so there was really no excuse to avoid this pleasure pen of once one of the most influential personalities in America. Doubt that – go watch Citizen Kane a dramatization of an interesting personality.
Hearst castle is a ranch, a 160 plus room residence which took almost 28 years to build. This is a place where Hearst entertained the whos who that mattered.
An avid admirer of European art and architecture, European influence is visible and the castle has original art:
Hearst kept his guests entertained with a zoo with exotic animals from all over the world. Zebras still roam the ranch. Imagine Cary Grant or Clark Gable or even Franklin Roosevelt enjoying themselves in the outdoor Neptune pool or the indoor Roman pool
and then having a meal with the host and his entourage:
or just chatting around a fountain:
Hearst maintained an immaculate property, bringing in a huge variety of flora and plants in particular many desert plants:
Atop a hilltop the castle offers spectacular views:
Spend as much or as little time there is something for everyone to enjoy, except when it gets too hot…that pool is out of bounds.
For more pictures visit surendra.smugmug.com.