Travel Magazine

Discover Palm Springs Hollywood History and Legends

By Melody Schubert @USATM

While driving or walking around Palm Springs you'll find several streets that honor Hollywood legends like Kirk Douglas, Bob Hope, Gerald Ford, and Dinah Shore. The most recognized street is of course Frank Sinatra Drive. The road begins at the hilltop entrance to The Ritz-Carlton, Rancho Mirage, and continues on around 8 miles east where it comes to rest at the far edge of Palm Desert.
Discover Palm Springs Hollywood History and LegendsThere's a Celebrity Tour of Palm Springs Homes that is a great way to embrace the history of Hollywood and Palm Springs. Along the way you'll also see home's previous owned by star's that include Bob Hope, Dean Martin, Marilyn Monroe, and many other Hollywood legends.
Frank Sinatra lived in Palm Springs for almost 50 years in a the mid-century modern Twin Palms estate. He loved to get together with friends, and did so by raising a Jack Daniels flag to signal the start of cocktail hour for his neighbors that included fellow crooner Bing Crosby and baseball great Joe DiMaggio.
You'll find Sinatra's Twin Palms Estate on the tour as well. It was built in 1947 by award-winning architect Stewart Williams, and features four bedrooms, seven bathrooms, and a state-of-the-art sound system, in addition an expansive backyard patio leading to a cabana, where you'll find the two signature “twin palm” trees, along with a piano-shaped swimming pool.
Although, you cannot tour the inside of the Twin Palms property, those who want to live like Ol' Blue Eyes can actual rent the house. Inside, you can imagine what it was like when Frank Sinatra, and his friends gathered. If you happen to spot a crack in the bathroom sink during your stay, don't worry, it's part of the house's history; said to be caused by a wayward champagne bottle thrown at Sinatra by an incensed Ava Gardner.
To pay your respects to Frank Sinatra visit the Desert Memorial Park at 69-920 Ramon Road in Cathedral City. The legend is buried in a family plot next to his parents. His grave is located near the entrance in front of the waterfall. Nearby are Frank's closest friend Jilly Rizzo, his uncle Vincent Mazzola and composer Jimmy Van Heusen. His simple headstone reads, “The Best Is Yet to Come,” and is almost always adorned with fresh cigarettes, dimes, which were a favorite giveaway of Sinatra's, and a reminder of tougher times, as well as mini bottles of Jack Daniels.
To get an idea of the local history, and spots not to miss in Palm Springs, drop in at the Visitors Center and pick up a map. While there you can learn about local events and festivities to experience while in town.  Or, use the following link to the Greater Palm Springs CVB to explore area attractions, festivals, culinary delights, and plan your trip to the Greater Palm Springs region.

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