My first post roommate in college, Debra Pickrel and her mother went on vacation from our home in Richmond Virginia to the Hearst Castle. This would have been back in 1982. She came back with glowing reports and I became interested in experiencing it for myself. Thirty years later I had the chance and I booked all three tours: the great rooms, the upstairs, and the kitchen and cottages. I am confident the great rooms tour are the most popular… For me though, I loved the upstairs best and secondly, the kitchen and cottages. It seems consistent with what I value most in life …. the stuff that is behind the curtain. It is through these tours that my opinion of Marion Davies changed and that I learned a few lessons from William Randolph Hearst’s approach to life and business from which I can benefit in my life. All in, worth every penny of the entry fee.
Also, what made a big impact in my impression of the tour was the guide, most noteworthy was James who gave us the tour of the upstairs. He was a storyteller of utmost skill but did so in a way that was organic and natural to the group that was with him. Even more special was his commitment to the castle and its history and his willingness to care for the guests that accompanied him on the tour. It reinforced for me, that human to human contact is fundamental to our being and when it is good … it is really good. Thank you James.
For Debra, it was the first real understanding that I had of her love of architecture. Click on her name above and go to find out more about her. Quite impressive accomplishments. Featured over the next week or so will be photos taken during our visit.