Between 1919 and 1947, William Randolph Hearst and architect Julia Morgan constructed a sprawling palace in San Simeon, California complete with 165 rooms, elaborate swimming pools, and even a private zoo.
Nestled in the Santa Lucia Mountains of California’s central coast is a lavish estate called Hearst Castle. Also known as “La Cuesta Encantada” or “Enchanted Hill,” the expansive home was built by newspaper tycoon William Randolph Hearst between 1919 and 1947.
Hearst worked with architect Julia Morgan to design the 165-room castle that sits on 250,000 acres of land in San Simeon, California. With 38 bedrooms, 42 bathrooms, three opulent guest houses, and two enormous pools, the estate cost an estimated $137 million in today's currency to build.
Throughout the 1920s and '30s, Hearst Castle hosted countless parties that were attended by some of Old Hollywood's biggest stars. What's more, William Randolph Hearst and his luxurious home even inspired Orson Welles' acclaimed 1941 film Citizen Kane.
Hearst resided in the castle with his wife — and later his mistress — during the course of its construction. He was ultimately forced to abandon it in 1947 when his health declined. After the newspaper magnate's death in 1951, Hearst Castle was donated to the State of California, and today it is a California State Park and historical monument.
An aerial view of Hearst Castle and the surrounding property.