If You Need More Reasons to Visit Hearst Castle

Sunset, May 1988 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

If You Need More Reasons to Visit Hearst Castle

If you need more reasons to visit Hearst Castle

William Randolph Hearst liked to refer to San Simeon as "The Ranch," but the opulent grandeur of his hilltop hideaway might have drawn the envy of Kublai Khan. The ultimate expression of the legendary newspaperman's personal wealth (and of Julia Morgan's architectural mastery), Hearst Castle was a private preserve from its construction in the 1920s until 1957, when the Hearst family donated it to the state. Since then, guided tours have allowed more than 20 million visitors to glimpse a way of life that rivaled the most extravagant fantasies enacted by Hearst's movie-star guests.

But facilities for people waiting to tour the property were surprisingly crude-- especially considering that the Hearst San Simeon State Historical Monument is the state park system's most profitable attraction. That has changed. A large new visitor center completed last summer now makes the wait more pleasant, and even offers something for drop-in coast-combers when the tours are full.

The new center's exhibit hall opens this month. Graphic displays and memorabilia document Hearst's far-flung interests and pursuits, ranging from politics to art collecting. Original drawings by Julia Morgan suggest the creative process that resulted in "La Cuesta Encantada" (The Enchanted Hill). Also in the exhibit are some fine examples from Hearst's enormous art collection, including an ancient Roman mosaic and two Italian Renaissance paintings.

Across from the exhibit area, a wall of windows lets you look on as experts restore other pieces of art from the castle. A chalkboard identifies work in progress.

Nearby campground is also improved

The state has revamped its campground at San Simeon State Beach, adding rest rooms with showers.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this article

Cited article

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

If You Need More Reasons to Visit Hearst Castle


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?