Hearst Castle
About 150 km to the south of the Monterey Peninsula, lies the famous 20th century castle, Hearst Castle. Beginning in 1919, at the height of his prosperity, American newpaper magnate William Randolph Hearst entrustd its construction to the female architect, Julia Morgan, and took 30 years to complete. The land that he owned at the time included the nearby hills, as well as, 80 km of coastline to the north and south centering around the San Simeon, a vast area of about 777 sq. km, within which he had a private harbor built, and included a ranch, a farm, orchard, zoo, reservoir, an airport, and an exclusive railroad from Los Angeles. This secluded area was
furnished with equipment and facilities to make self-sufficiency possible. Currently, the property is managed as a state park and attracts tourists from around the world. The part open to the public is called Casa Grande at the heart of the fasicities sitting atop a grand hill which boasts 10 rooms. There are also guest houses, Casa del Sol (18 rooms), Casa del Mar (19 rooms), and Casa del Monte (10 rooms). Other features include indoor and outdoor pools tennis courts gardens and orchards. With the castle and gardens done up in a Mediterranean style, there are many precious handicrafts collected from Italy or Spain, and there is even a 3,000 year old sculpture from ancient Egypt.