La Cuesta Encantada, The Enchanted Hill, The Hearst Castle, William Randolph Hearst

La Cuesta Encantada – 100 Years Later

In 1919, William Randolph Hearst began construction on the massive La Cuesta Encantada, also known as the Enchanted Hill. It took 28 years for construction on the entire estate to be completed.

Jack Angellini, one of the carpenters for Hearst Castle, claimed that the on site workers had to tear down as much as they built. This was because Hearst kept on remodeling parts of the estate to his liking.

After William Randolph Hearst’s passing La Cuesta Encantada became known as the Hearst Castle. The State of California acquired ownership of the grounds and turned it into the Hearst San Simeon State Historical Monument.

Elevated view of the Neptune Pool.
The indoor swimming pool.

The castle has many of the sculptures from European countries, within its outdoor grounds, and several paintings inside of the castle walls in tact. From 2016 to August 2018 the outdoor Neptune Pool underwent renovation.

Madonna Inn, Phyliss Madonna, San Luis Obispo, California, The Madonna Inn, William Randolph Hearst

The Grande Madonna Inn!

In 1958, the Madonna Inn was founded by Alex Madonna and his wife Phyliss Madonna.  The first twelve rooms were completed on December 24, 1958 and the hotel soon increased it’s capacity to forty rooms.

During one’s first visit, a person can easily see that the Madonna Inn is a Victorian style Inn that is exquisitely built from the inside and out.

Madonna was friends with William Randolph Hearst, the owner of the San Francisco Chronicle and other newspapers, whom built a castle in Wales, England and the Hearst Castle, on a hill, within the coast of San Simon, California.

William Randolph Hearst remodeled his castle in California several times, and as a result of his friendship with Phyllis, he gifted a marble stairwell and a statute that was removed from his castle after remodeling. Currently, this piece of Hearst Castle is used as a staircase in the Madonna Inn.

I got to meet Phyliss Madonna, who is currently 98 years old, to have her sign a copy of her book. In return I gifted her a picture I took of a horse statue in Oklahoma during my cross country trip earlier this year.