Guests invited to William Randolph Hearst's estate at San Simeon in the 1930's would be treated to a memorable weekend at "The Ranch." As with many country estates during the time period, visitors would often find all of their travel arrangements made for them, whether arriving by train, by car or later by airplane at his private landing strip. A relaxing weekend might include swimming in one of the two elegant pools, horseback riding, picnicking, tennis or a relaxing afternoon spent browsing through the library. For Hearst's editors it might be a working weekend at the estate. Many notable guests visited the estate during this time period and enjoyed Mr. Hearst's hospitality.

Today, Hearst Castle comes to life at night with Living History Docents in 1930's dress recreating that time period, lounging by the Neptune Pool or strolling through the rose-scented gardens and enjoying the spectacular sunset. For other sports-minded guests, a game of tennis may be planned prior to dinner. Indoors, guests may be playing poker in the Assembly Room or putting a jigsaw puzzle together. A butler serves cocktails in the Assembly Room, while a maid hurries by with an armload of towels for the guest rooms. A movie star may try his hand at the grand piano in the corner, impressing an up and coming starlet, playing one of the popular tunes of the day. In the Billiard Room two Hearst editors are engrossed in a game. Meanwhile, the chef in the kitchen is busy preparing dinner for the large group.

Friends of Hearst Castle has funded the purchase of much of the vintage clothing and props for this popular tour through fundraising and membership donations.

Evening Tours (Tour 5) at Hearst Castle are available March through May and October through December and feature the Living History Docents as they bring life to the Hilltop and demonstrate what a visit to the Castle might have been like in the 1930's. Because of the popularity of these special tours it is highly recommended that you make reservations in advance. Copyright © 2000 - 2017 Friends of Hearst Castle ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Copyright Notice: All photos are Copyright ©Hearst Castle®/California State Parks


"Hearst Castle", "Hearst San Simeon State Historical Monument",
"La Cuesta Encantada", and "The Enchanted Hill"
are registered trademarks of Hearst Castle®/California State Parks.
2001 - 2017 California State Parks, All rights reserved.