The Most Beautiful Castles in the United States

There are a dozen mansions in California, where movie stars and tech brokers are building mansions and adding derelict wings, swimming pools and yoga pavilions. But nothing comes close to Hearst Castle. Generous designed by California’s first female architect, Julia Morgan, as the private residence of publishing magnate William Randolph Hearst, the complex, completed in 1947, is an extraordinary temple of wealth and excess. Now one of California’s most-visited historic landmarks, it’s a dazzling oasis with a 165-room castle, 127 acres/51 hectares of terraced gardens, sparkling fountains, towering palms and, best of all, captivating views. sunny central beach.

It’s simple to lose a whole day or more. exploring the fort and its surroundings in San Simeone. The resort town offers a wide variety of places to stay, from traditional accommodation to luxurious accommodation. Start your visit with one of the Hearst Castle day tours in the main house or private cottage tours; Come in November or December to see the villa adorned with a very festive decor.Each visit offers visitors the opportunity to spend an impressive moment in the two luxurious swimming pools of the residence. 

The 32 meter long outdoor Neptune pool is heated by a diesel system and framed by Neptune and Nereid marble statues guarding the aquatic paradise. The indoor Roman pool resembles a decadent Roman bath, with rich details like cobalt blue and gold enamels or glass tiles. Look above to see the intricate mosaics that cover the roof and dome, depicting a star-filled night sky.Visit the Hearst Ranch Winery in San Simeon, founded by Steve, great-grandson of William Randolph Hearst. Along the Pacific Coast Highway, the tasting room offers stunning views, Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, Chardonnay, and more.

Hearst Castle Tour

It is easy to spend an entire day or more exploring the fort and its surroundings in San Simeone. The seaside resort offers a wide variety of places to stay, from traditional to lavish. Begin your visit with one of Hearst Castle’s many varied tours, including the Grand Rooms Tour, the Upstairs Suites Tour, the Cottages and Kitchen Tour, and a seasonal tour focusing on the life of Julia Morgan. Come in November or December to see the property take on a festive Christmas decor.

Each tour allows visitors to spend awe-inspiring time in the residence’s two luxurious swimming pools. Neptune’s outdoor pool, 104 feet high, is heated by an oil system and is framed by marble statues of Neptune and Nereid guarding the aquatic paradise. The Roman indoor pool looks like a decadent Roman bath, with rich details like cobalt blue and gold glazes or glass tiles. Look above to see the intricate mosaics that cover the roof and dome, depicting a night sky filled with stars.

Things to Do near Hearst Castle

There are several other sights and activities in these the area. Surf or walk the pier at William Randolph Hearst Memorial Beach, spot sea lions and a lighthouse at Piedras Blancas Lighthouse Station, or take a stroll while your eyes are on the whales at Fiscalini Ranch Preserve. Take a great break from the outdoors with a visit to the Hearst Ranch Winery in San Simeon, co-founded by William Randolph Hearst’s great-grandson Steve. The tasting room along the Pacific Coast Highway offers sweeping views, Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, Chardonnay, and more.

There are 42 bedrooms and 61 baths in all at Hearst Castle. 19 living rooms,  127 acres (0.5 km2)  garden, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, tennis courts, cinema, airport and Hearst. The largest private zoo in the world ever since.

Hirst was an unpredictable rethinker who often commissioned the reconstruction of previously agreed upon and often built structures: the Neptune Pool was rebuilt three times before it was satisfied.

Due to continuous design changes and Hearst’s financial difficulties in the early and late 1930s, the complex was never completed. Towards the end of the summer of 1919, Morgan explored the area, analyzed its geology, and prepared preliminary plans for the Casa Grande.Construction started in 1919 and lasted up until 1947, the year Hearst finally departed the property. The last person departed the property.

Construction cost

The exact cost of the entire San Simeone complex is unknown. Kastner estimates “less than $10,000,000” for the construction and renovation of the complex between 1919 and 1947. $8.2 million. Hearst’s relaxed approach to using his companies, and sometimes companies’ own funds, to make personal purchases made a clear accounting of expenses nearly impossible. In 1927, one of his lawyers wrote that “the whole history of your company shows an informal method of withdrawal”. In 1945, when the Hearst Company last closed its Hearst Castle account, Morgan provided a breakdown of construction costs; this did not include spending on antiques and furniture. Casa Grande costs $2,987,000 to build and $500,000 for the guest rooms. Other jobs, including nearly half a million dollars in the Neptune Pool, brought the total to $4,717,000. Morgan’s nearly twenty years of near-continuous work amounted to $70,755.


A Greek rite

Ancient Egyptian, Greek and Roman artifacts are the oldest in Hearst’s collection. The oldest is the stone figures of the Egyptian goddess Sekhmet, standing on the southern esplanade below the Casa Grande and dating from the 18th and 19th Dynasties from around 1550 to 1189 BC. For the bedrooms, Morgan designed the pool layout with tiles inspired by ancient Egyptian motifs. In the courtyard of the Casa del Monte is one of the nine Roman sarcophagi collected by Hearst, dated to 230 AD and already preserved in the Palazzo Barberini. Purchased at a sale by Charles T. Yerkes in 1910.] The highlight of the antiquities collection is the presence of Greek vases on display in the second-floor library.

Although some 65 vases were purchased by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York after Hearst’s death, the remains of the castle still form one of the largest private ensembles in the world. [y] Hearst began collecting vases in 1901, and his collection was moved. From their home in New York in 1935 to the castle. At its peak, the collection numbered over 400 pieces. The vases were placed on the shelves of the library, and each was carefully wired to protect it from earthquake vibrations. At the time of Hearst’s collection, most of the vases were believed to be of Etruscan production, but scholars later attributed them all to Greece.


The Three Graces – a replica of the original by Canova

Hearst often purchased multiple lots at major collection sales; In 1930, he bought five ancient Roman statues at the London Lansdowne auction. Four of them are currently in the Los Angeles County Museum of Art’s collection, while one is at the Metropolitan Museum. of the Metropolitan. In addition to bronzes, he also collected marble figures; In the Doge’s suite, there is a stone cast of Bernini’s original Apollo and Daphne, dated around 1617.

Hearst was glad to acquire 19th-century replicas or modern reproductions of antiquities in addition to his classical statues.; “If a traditional sculpture isn’t what you’re looking for, try a contemporary one instead of a classic sculpture. You can find the modern one”. He was a special patron of Charles Cassou and also favoured the early 19th-century Danish sculptor Bertel Thorvaldsen, who stayed in the castle of Victorious Venus. A truly classic Athena from this collection and the Thomas Hope collection was displayed in the Assembly Hall along with Antonio Canova’s Venus Italica. Other works by Thorvaldsen include four large marble medallions representing the virtues of society in the Assembly Hall. Two 19th-century marbles are in the foyer of Frederick William MacMonnies’ Assembly Hall, Bacchante, a copy of the bronze original, and Pygmalion and Galatea by Gérôme. A monumental statue of Galatea, attributed to Leopoldo Ansiglioni and datable to around 1882, is located in the centre of the basin on the main terrace in front of the Casa Grande.


Among the rugs are Scipio, which Romano installed in the Assembly Hall, two of a set that tells the biblical story of Daniel in the Morning Room, and the millefleur hunt scene in the Billiard Room. The latter is particularly rare, being one of the “very few of this period in the world”. Hearst also collected and exhibited a large collection of Navajo textiles, including blankets, rugs, and mirages, at San Simeon. Most of it was purchased by Herman Schweizer, who ran the Indian department of the Fred Harvey Company.

Originally salvaged from Hearst’s farm in Jolon, they were moved to Wyntoon in 1940, then brought to San Simeon and finally donated to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art in 1942. Hearst has always been interested in artifacts that have historical and cultural links with history. California and Central and Latin America; The north wing contains two Peruvian coats of arms. They show the shields of Don Luis Jerónimo Fernández Cabrera y Bobadilla, Count of Chinchón and Governor of Peru, dating from 1580. Composer and critic Nathaniel Burt assessed the San Simeon collections as follows; “Far from the simple kitsch that most Orientals believe in, [San Simeon] is full of true beauty and treasure.”


Are there any actual castles in America?

From a 165-room castle overlooking California’s Pacific Coast to a castle estate on an island in upstate New York, these stunning castles can be found all across the nation.

What is the US’s oldest castle?
The oldest brick home in North America, Bacon’s Castle, was constructed in 1665 for Arthur Allen and his family.

Which castle is the only one of its kind in North America?

The Liberty Entertainment Group’s Casa Loma, the only full-sized castle in North America and Toronto’s top historic site, allows you to experience the grandeur and majesty of the Edwardian period.

Which four major castles are there?

To learn more about the Motte and Bailey, Concentric, Shell Keep, and Square Keep kinds of medieval castles, click on the links provided below.

Which US island has a castle on it?

In the Thousand Islands area of the U.S. state of New York, Boldt Castle is a significant landmark and popular tourist destination. It is situated on Heart Island in the Saint Lawrence River and is open to visitors on a seasonal basis between mid-May and mid-October.

Who is the owner of the largest castle on Earth?

The family residence of the British kings and queens for for a thousand years has been Windsor Castle, the oldest and biggest inhabited castle in the world. It is Her Majesty The Queen’s formal residence and still functions as a functional royal palace today, housing around 150 personnel.

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