The iconic Neptune Pool at Hearst Castle, drained and closed for four years to repair leaks and restore statues, is once again ready for its closeup.
Workers began refilling the pool with water Tuesday, marking the end of a $10-million renovation at the 115-room former San Simeon home of publishing magnate William Randolph Hearst.
The pool, undoubtedly one of the most photographed sites at Hearst Castle, was drained in 2014 after cracks were found to be leaking up to 5,000 gallons of water a day, a California State Parks news release said.
Restoration of the pool was extensive. Workers removed 9,000 square feet of original marble tiles and replaced them with new ones, using material from the same Vermont quarry where the originals were made.
Repairs were made to the pool’s concrete shell, and three layers of waterproofing materials were installed underground.
Art Deco sculptures around the pool also were restored.
The pool, which reflects elements of Roman and Greek styles, holds 345,000 gallons of water. It’s one of two pools at Hearst Castle. The other is the Roman Pool, a smaller indoor pool ringed by statues of gods and goddesses.
Tours of Hearst Castle start at $25 per person and should be reserved in advance. The California historical monument receives about 750,000 visitors every year.