Hearst Castle

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San Simeon, California

Hearst Castle San Simeon Reviews

bnl3983 bnl3983
3 reviews
Hearst Castle at San Simeon Oct 06, 2013
Spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean. Hearst chose this an area with a cove to build his home. The bus trip from the visitors center to the castle was longer than I expected - winding roads so that you could see the castle and then not see it. We took a Grand Rooms tour, which I enjoyed. But there were other tours that I would also like to see, including the pools and living quarters. Before our 1:30 tour, we saw a 45 minute imax movie giving a little history of William Randolph Hearst and the construction of the castle.
1 / 1 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
X_Drive says:
It is indeed a wonderful place to visit!! Unforgetable! :D
Posted on: Oct 06, 2013
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Nube_viajera14 Nube_via…
2 reviews
Wonderful Place to visit. Not Expensive. Jul 01, 2012
This place is beautiful. Its a piece of bits of Europe in California, breathtaking views towards the ocean. Inspiring and historical. The location is Central California,it a cute place to stay at. You can take a trip a long the shore and Find sea lions. There is a place called cambria it is such a beautiful, cute little town to stay at. Very safe and close to the beach. It has beautiful views all over.

For the Hearst Castle you pay $25 and iit gets you a movie of the place and a inside tour of the castle, but then you can stay all day in there and hang out by the neptune pool which is a replica of rome.
rabrown rabrown
32 reviews
# 10 - Hearst Castle, San Simeon, CA Aug 09, 2011
Hearst Castle is a great, luxurious and elegant home situated just north of San Luis Obispo. It was built to represent William Randolph Hearst, the wealthy newspaper businessman and was before The Great Depression in 1919, drawing much interest during the depression itself. It is based of off a Mediterranean style and represents many influences from Hearst himself. The film Citizen Kane, often times regarded as one of the best movies of the last 100 years, is based on Hearst and his life. #1 thing is to see the pool, it is unbelievable. It is a wonderful stop if you are driving down the coast from Northern to Southern California, but I would even recommend a stop a day trip from San Luis Obispo and the wonderful beaches around it.
jenslemp jenslemp
5 reviews
Beautiful mansion the public shouldn't pass up Apr 20, 2011
I have been to this site a couple of times, and because it offers various tours, the indoor pool is the only thing that I have seen twice. There is wine tasting at some of California's best wineries surly ding this area and the site itself is breathtaking. I strongly recommend a day trip to this splendid site.
X_Drive X_Drive
836 reviews
Hearst Castle’s - Tour Two Sep 26, 2010
Hearst Castle’s Casa Grande tour or tour #2 take you from the Visitor’s Center located just off Highway One a few miles north of Cambria, up the five mile bus ride to the Castle area itself. We had called early the day before to make sure tickets were available for the day and time we wanted. You can also do that on-line. This is recommended, especially during the summer months. Price was $24 per person in Sept. 2010

Tour two, Casa Grande, is one of four daytime tours available. There is also an Evening Tour from October through December that allows you to feel like a guest of William Randolph Hearst with docents dressed in period dress.

This tour is the most strenuous of the tours with more than 400 steps going up and down Casa Grande.

This tour begins at the wonderful Neptune’s Pool, as do all of the tours, which was started in 1924 and wasn’t completed until 1936 due to Mr. Hearst changing taste. It had to be rebuilt twice after its first completion. Each time growing in size it is now 103 feet long and in ten feet deep at the northern end. The six concrete columns on the west side of the pool were purchased and shipped from Rome. The statue of Neptune had to be changed once it arrived to fit into the area at the center of the Roman Temple facade. So the arms were cut off at the elbow and new ones attached to make the piece fit.

The Doge’s suite is an Italian style suite with a balcony which they say was inspired by the Doge’s Palace in Venice.

The “Cloisters” are four guest rooms flanked by open walkways on either side, and windows that open sideways to allow the ocean breeze to flow through. Nowadays the windows and doors are only opened for very short periods so the salty breeze does not do as much damage.

The guest library contains more than 4,000 books and also some very nice Greek and Roman antiquities.

The Gothic Suite occupies the entire third floor. Mr. Hearst’s private suite included his enormous personal library and office where he conducted all of his business while at the property. His bed had to be completely remade and extended to fit his larger than life size of six feet two inches, which was well over the norm for that time.

The kitchen and pantry areas were also on the tour and showed that he went to great expense to feed himself and all of his guests the best and freshest food.

This tour, as all of the others, ends at the two tennis courts and just below at the indoor pool.

Cameras are allowed inside, but no flash or flashbulbs can be used. For that reason some photos have been altered to bring out the detail.
Travelbuddys Travelbu…
88 reviews
Just a summer house Jun 08, 2009
We visited it may 2009 and had a 1 hour 45 minute tour, the experience tour. This is one of the 4 tours you can do in Hearst Castle. If you visit the first time do the first tour. try to be there early in the morning to get a ticket, it is pretty busy there. Hotels are enough in the region of Hearst Castle. The price of a tour is $24,- (may 2009).

Have fun
1 / 1 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
X_Drive X_Drive
836 reviews
Hearst Castle - The Experience Tour Aug 20, 2008
This is the second time I have written a review on the Heart Castle, so I will try to keep this one aimed at the Experience Tour, or tour number one. It begins with a five or six mile bus ride from the Visitors center at the parking lot and takes you up to the crest of the hill where all of the Hearst estate is located.

You get to listen to prerecorded messages on the way up. The tour begins just below the first of three guest houses. This one is Casa del Sol and is an 18 room guest house and very impressive as you step up the twenty or so stairs leading to the large front patio area at the base of the stairs leading up to it.

Then as the tour guide explains more and more about the way the building began and the designer who William Randolph Hearst hired she leads you over to one of the premier sites on the entire site, the outdoor pool.

At each area she tells a little more and gives you a few minutes to take in the beauty and get your photographs. From the pool area we went up the steps and to another patio area directly above the pool. We’re able to get some fabulous pictures from that perspective.

Then we are taken around to the back of Casa del Sol where we allowed to walk in and through 4 bedroom and 4 bathrooms. The only request is that cameras must not use flash, only existing light. A second tour assistant is there to help anyone who needs help in turning off the flash on their cameras.

From the exit of the guest house we are guided through some of the garden areas and around to where we can see the beautiful view and then to the front of Casa Grande, the main house.

We spend a couple of minutes relaxing and enjoying the front area before we are taken around one side and enter the home through a small side door and go directly into the Assembly Room, the largest of the sitting rooms where most of Mr. Hearst’s guests gathered before dinner. Our tour guide explains that the doors are built as part of the walls and are completely invisible to most people. That was why everyone felt that Mr. Hearst appeared out of nowhere.

Next was the Refectory, the only dinning room on the hill, with one table that stretched from the fire place at one end to the double doorway at the other. And right in the center was where Mr. Heart sat.

The Morning room, as east facing sitting room filled with Spanish antiques and Flemish tapestries, and a very recently made electric fan on the floor.

The Billiard Room is just through a short hall way with two foot wide walls, as are all of the walls in the castle. There are two billiard tables and one extremely pretty tapestry in this game room.

We end the main house tour in the Theater, which is the largest room in Casa Grande and where Mr. Hearst and all of his guests enjoyed watching movies, both home made and Hollywood’s first run.

Next we were escorted out to the two tennis courts and down around the walk to the entrance to the indoor pool. This is such an amazing sight it nearly takes your breath away. With the water completely still you somehow get the feel that you are seeing a mirrored image.

The bus is then waiting for you outside and although you get a little more information on the way down the hill.

At the end of the tour you get to watch the National Geographic production of "Hearst Castle – Building the Dream", a forty minute giant screen movie covering how and why this fabulous castle was built.
The indoor pool
The Refectory
The Fireplace in the Assembly Room
The Assembly Room
1 / 1 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
sweetsummerdaiz says:
Roger, I'm happy to see that you posted these reviews of the various tours. San Simeon is on my must see list and have tried to decide which tour suits my taste the best, so thanks again.
Posted on: Sep 30, 2010
X_Drive says:
You may have, but it would have been in a previous life!! Or do you not believe in reincarnation. You are way too young to have done it in this lifetime! It truely is an amazing place, and both pools are high points! :D
Posted on: Dec 31, 2008
nicolecarp says:
The whole Castle is AMAZING! I was blown away by the details and architecture which I admire so much. The pools are my favorite, the indoor was was beautiful. Can't not like a place that had the famous Hollywood actors and actress like Marilyn Monroe visit. Wish I could have gone to just one of those parties.
Posted on: Dec 31, 2008
X_Drive X_Drive
836 reviews
Feb 10, 2007
Yes, it is a marvelous place to see. To realize that this newspaper mogul had the money to have this place built so far away from everything (even still today) was amazing. He did like his privacy at times. The parties held here were amazing too. There are several tours available (4 during the day and 1 at night), and each costs from $20 to $30, so seeing the entire property is quite expensive. Also, each tour takes about two hours total so taking more than one tour can take most of your day. Most people take tour #1, called the Experience tour. It gives a broad overview and is the least strenuous. Remember there are an awful lot of steps at Hearst Castle. Tour one covers 170 stairs and 2/3 mile of walking. Other tours cover as many as 400 stairs (up and down) and more than a mile of walking. There are disabled tours available at no extra charge, IF you call two weeks in advance!
Entry to the Visitor Center and Mu…
Eric Eric
408 reviews
Jan 06, 2006
Hearst Castle is pretty amazing, but I think the effect is somewhat lessened by the fact that there are so many other large private residences in existence today. Still, I think it's worth a visit. My favorite part about the place is the outdoor pool. I'm a big fan of classical architecture and I love the columned porticos surrounding the water. The view from the top of the hill is also pretty amazing, especially on a clear day. There are a bunch of rolling, green hills immediately below you, and the seascape shimmers on the horizon.If you are fabulously wealthy, apparently you can call into the museum and set up private arrangements/parties at the residence. An outdoor pool party wouldn't be so bad here...
The pool.
The guest house.
The view.
foolz0r says:
I want a pool with things w/ columns next to it. Plz transfer $1000000000 to me to achieve this =)
Posted on: May 02, 2006

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