What I saw in… Hearst Castle.

San Simeon State Park / en route to Hearst Castle

Have you ever been? It definitely wasn’t all that I had expected. Even though I’m a modernist and minimalist at heart, I can certainly appreciate the history and grandness of the Hearst Castle. Just the ride up to the Castle will take your breathe away. Talk about a long-term collaboration, the construction of the Castle was a 28-year project, maybe even more, between the famed San Francisco architect Julia Morgan and William Randolph Hearst. Did you know the architectural style of the Castle was inspired by Hearst’s European travels with his mother when he was a boy? The main house towers were inspired by a Spanish cathedral, guest cottages reminiscent of the Mediterranean, a Roman temple front and columns that anchor the outdoor pool… Can’t even begin to describe the massive European and Mediterranean art and antique collection. It literally covers just about every wall and room (and there are 165 rooms in total!). You have to see it to truly appreciate Hearst’s love of collecting. I was in complete awe.

 

Casa Grande / the main house

 

side view of Casa Grande / entrance to wine cellar

 

Casa del Monte (House of the Mountains) / “House B”

 


Billiard room / Flemish tapestry from 1500

 

tiny glimpse of the kitchen / look at that oversized mixer!

 

Neptune pool / how great is that pattern?

 

Roman pool / 1″ square mosaic tiles decorated the walls from floor to ceiling

{ all camera phone images by Peggy Wong }

 

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