On a whim, friends suggested a twilight tour of Hearst Castle, and while it was hard for me to get good photos in the dim light, the tour itself was amazing. I last saw this place when I was a kid and remembered only that it was big and fancy. Like seriously over-the-top fancy. My memory served me right, as you will see in this post.
The main castle is four stories, at the very top of the mountain so it’s a five mile shuttle bus ride (along really winding narrow roads) to reach it.
The main entry is all imported from an old European castle, so pretty fantastic.
Through those doors is the main drawing room, with a fireplace from another old European castle. You can use our tour guide in the lower right to give a sense of scale. Let’s just say it’s big. Very big.
The dining room is also big. This is one of the few things I remember from my childhood visit, probably because I had a postcard of this for many years.
The kitchen faucets are the fanciest handles I’ve ever seen. They don’t sell them in the gift shop, though, so my trailer will have to live without one.
The last stop on the tour was the indoor pool. The bottom has stars of alabaster so that you dive into the sky, or something like that, according to the tour guide. It was a cool place, and I’d definitely go for a swim if they let anyone in the pool.
To answer the question of why a castle, the old man himself said:
I would like to build something up on the hill at San Simeon. I get tired of going up there and camping in tents, I’m getting a little old for that. I’d like to get something that would be more comfortable.
William Randolph Hearst