PACIFICA, Calif. (KGO) -- High atop Pacifica, a 115-year-old castle overlooks the Pacific Ocean and Highway 1.
Sam's Castle is now back open to the public after closing down during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Sam Mazza Foundation maintains the castle. Executive Director Jeanette Cool said it's busier than ever.
"People want to be out, people want to come visit, people want to be together," Cool said. "And people want to hear live performance. So it's been really great fun reopening and having the life back in the house."
Husband and wife Jerry and Diedra Crow volunteer giving tours, through the Pacifica Historical Society.
"It's.. 22 rooms and four turrets and it's just marvelous," Diedra Crow said.
"My favorite room.. includes an inlaid screen that was acquired by actor William Holden when he made 'Love is a Many-Splendored Thing' in Hong Kong many years ago and it also has a harmonium," said Jerry Crow.
The Crows dress up as Henry Harrison and Emily McCloskey, the castle's original owners. Henry Harrison McCloskey, grandfather of Congressman Pete McCloskey, built the mansion like a fortress after losing his San Francisco home in the 1906 earthquake.
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The castle has seen many reincarnations-as a speakeasy, illegal abortion clinic, brothel and Coast Guard barracks during World War II.
"This is a photo of Sam Mazza at the age of 18," Jerry Crow said, pointing to a photo of Mazza in the home. "He was the last owner of the castle and collector of artifacts we see all around us."
Sam Mazza bought the castle in 1959, filling it with antiques, eclectic collectibles and movie props.
You can walk up these stairs to four turrets at each end of the castle, leading to rooms with private entrances.
No surprise, there are stories about ghosts at this mansion, that has withstood so many transformations.
"There's lots of beauty involved," Cool said. "As you can see, there's so many things in the collections that are detailed, that have historical significance or they're just beautify or they had us and we don't know these things now and I think it gives people an opportunity to come into a different era as it were experienced for an afternoon."
Now, it can add another era to the list-the COVID-19 pandemic.
After being closed for two-and-a-half years, visitors get to experience the wonder of the castle again.
"It's a pleasure to make sure that memories are preserved appropriately," Jerry Crow said.
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The castle in Pacifica's Sharp Park area is open for tours one weekend a month. Each tour is an hour and a half long.
They also have some special events with music.
Mother's Day teas scheduled for May 14 are already sold out.
Tickets are $30 for tours and you can reserve them on the castle's website.
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