"The Fool On The Hill" Hearst San Simeon State Historical Monument by keida84
Hearst San Simeon State Historical Monument Travel Guide: 135 reviews and 575 photos
William Randolph Hearst began building the castle in 1919 shortly after the death of his beloved mother. He was 59 years old when construction began.
A female architect, Julia Morgan was tapped to oversee the project which was slated to take about a year and a half! The construction began and did not end until 1951 when Hearst died. His widow and 5 children did not wish to continue the building and therefore looked to sell it and finally it was turned over to the State of California as a Historical Park.
When you come to the Hearst San Simeon State Historical Monument you will have the opportunity to go on 4 guided tours. If you have never been then the tour you should visit is the "overview" tour which is tour number 1. Tours 2 and 3 go through other parts of the property including guest houses and the North wing of the building which is the "newest" part which also remains unfinished as Mr Hearst died before it was completed. The 4th tour is of the gardens only. There is a nighttime tour as well, check the park's website for dates as it is offered on selected dates only.
This pool is so inviting. It is a shame that no one really gets to enjoy it in the way that it was designed for. It was recently drained and repaired following the Paso Robles quake of 2003, but continued settleing and earth movements have it slated for a big repair very soon. I am so glad we got to see it in all its glory. The supports and the frescos are over 1800 years old. They were purchased by Mr Hearst and brought from Rome and Greece to the Hearst Ranch in the 1930's.
You'd think with all the starving children in the world... Yes it is beautiful and no I would not like to own it.
Hearst was a egomanic who would stop at nothing for this house. That included the 24 carat gold inlay tiles that lined the floor of the Neptune pool house . Click on the picture to enlarge it. All the gold color you see thoughout the pool house is 24 carat gold! The pool was actually heated with hot water oil boilers and brought to a temperature of 80 degrees. The lamps were hand carved alabaster and were the only source of lighting used in the pool house.
I could not help but think of the 7 deadly sins while we were on this tour: Lust, Avarice, Sloth, Vanity, Envy, Gluttony, Anger. Hearst could never be accused of "sloth" but 6 out of 7 is not a good sign.
Hearst was not an easy man to get along with. I suppose he needed all this room just to contain his ego.
- Pros:Beautiful architecture and lovely grounds
- Cons:Think of the 7 deadly sins every one except "sloth"
- In a nutshell:The Fool On The Hill
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