News Release


CONTACT: Ty Smith, Chief - Museum Interpretation

April 30, 2014805-927-2157

Hearst Castle® Offering New Tours for a Limited Time

Hearst Castle will be offering two new tour options for visitors for a limited time: a guided tour of the gardens, as well as a semi-private special focus tour entitled “Hearst and Hollywood”.The tours will begin Thursday May 1, 2014 and run through Monday June 30, 2014.

The Garden Tour:

Transforming this rocky hillside into a lush garden was no easy feat. Come spend an hour exploring the gardens of Hearst Castle while your knowledgeable tour guide talks of the history, challenges, and changes faced by the groundskeepers of the Castle.

The “Garden Tour” is an hour long and has a capacity of 14 people at a time. The cost of the new tour is $25 per adult and $12 per child ages 5-12 years. It will be offered twice a day at 10:00 a.m. and 2:40 p.m. The tour begins with a look at the Hidden Terrace, an early set of stairs and terraces, which were ultimately covered up by later construction. The group then takes a look at the world famous Neptune Pool which is currently empty and awaiting repairs. After ascending the large staircase to see the 17 changing rooms, the tour winds around the gardens and guest houses following the Esplanade, a formal pathway perfectly suited for strolling. The formal landscaped areas can be found around the Esplanade where Mr. Hearst requested a “confusion and profusion of blooms.” The walk along the Esplanade takes you all the way around the Main House, past the Tennis Courts and includes some of the best views of the surrounding ranchland. The tour concludes above the Neptune Pool, at which point you will be invited to continue exploring the gardens on your own, at your own pace.

Hearst and Hollywood:

From the actors and producers of Hollywood’s Golden Era to the international pop stars of today, the allure of the Castle and its owner has always been strong. As the head of a movie studio, William Randolph Hearst produced more than 100 motion pictures. He helped build the careers of actors, designers, directors, and screenwriters. His brightest star was his companion, actress Marion Davies. Here at the Castle, the pair played host to Hollywood royalty including Charlie Chaplin, Bette Davis, Cary Grant and Greta Garbo, among many others. On this two-hour semi-private guided tour, your guide will focus on Hearst, Davies and all things Hollywood. The expanded tour route includes areas from all five regular tour offerings. The cost of the tour is $100 per ticket with a capacity of eight people at a time. It will be offered once daily at 12:00 p.m. At the conclusion of the tour, visitors are able to stroll the gardens and terraces at their leisure and enjoy the views, just as Mr. Hearst’s guests did during the Castle’s Hollywood heyday.

Reservations can be made through, or by calling 1-800-444-4445.Reservations are encouraged, because space is limited.

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