Sections SEARCH Skip to content Skip to site index Art & Design Subscribe Log In Log In Today’s Paper Advertisement Supported by ByPatricia Leigh Brown Oct. 23, 2018 SAN SIMEON, Calif. — It was the ultimate pool party. The benefit “V.I.P. Swim Experience” in the Neptune Pool at Hearst Castle here started with a troupe of Esther Williams look-alikes in matching white bathing caps and lipstick-red halter suits doing fan dives off the marble steps of the pool’s signature Roman Temple beneath a heroic pediment of Neptune. As day descended into night, it was the bucket list set’s turn, as guests who paid more than $1,000 for the real-life fantasy of swimming in the Neptune Pool plunged into 345,000 gallons of frigid nirvana designed for the publishing tycoon William Randolph Hearst. “My husband doesn’t know what I spent on this, just so you know,” Barbara Littrell, a retired elementary school office manager from Costa Mesa, said. She quit smoking 21 years ago and was using some of her cigarette savings for the swim, during which she wore a feather boa. Like Clark Gable, Carole Lombard, Cary Grant and Charlie Chaplin before her, Ms. Littrell descended a series of grand staircases… Read full this story
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