The Benești village is mentioned for the first time in historical documents in 1613, even though there are earlier documents proving the existence of lands belonging to the Otetelișanu land lords in the village area. The mansion was built at the end of the 17th century and the beginning of the 18th century, taking architectural elements from kule and also from Brancoveanu style buildings. The founders and owners of the mansion were members of the Otetelișanu family, a family of great countrymen philanthropists of their times. Amongst the best known figures are mentioned: Ilie Otetelișanu (the founder of the St. Ilie church in Craiova in 1720), the brothers Iordache and Grigore Otetelișanu who invested in the education of the rural environment of their local Benești village, Iancu Otetelișanu (director of the National Theatre since 1845 and supporter of the national Romanian theatrical repertoire of Costache Caragiale’s acting group).
The domain is comprised of a manor, several annex buildings and a court church. The church was built by Barbu Otetelișanu in 1746 and was used for both private and public religious mass and as a family burial ground. Currently the church serves the local community, regular religious service being held inside.
In 1799 Petrache Poenaru, teacher, engineer and mathematician is born on the Benești domain. Later he became a member of the Romanian Academy and invented the grandfather of the fountain pen, known as the dip pen with ink reservoir.
The history of the domain around 1821 is tightly linked to the legendary historical figure of Tudor Vladimirescu. He used to have a powerful link to Petrache Poenaru and other regional leaders of the Revolutionary movement of the period.
During the interwar period, the manor was restored, according to written monographic sources by arh. Iancu Atănăsescu
The Otelelișanu family lived on the domain until the nationalisation. After this moment the domain passed into the state’s property and was organized as a memorial museum. This function continued even after 1990 until the beginning of the reclaiming process by the legal heirs.
After the property was restored to the rightful owners, between 2000 and 2003, one of the heirs bought off the shares of the rest so that the domain belonged to a single person once again. In 2013 the Otetelișanu Domain Foundation was founded. This foundation carries out various cultural events.