The City of Palm Springs has developed a program to identify distinctive neighborhoods in the community. Of the 33 neighborhoods, 7 have historical and cultural significance.
Movie Colony neighborhoods.
The Movie Colony is just east of Palm Canyon Drive. The Movie Colony East neighborhood extends further east from the Ruth Hardy Park. These areas started growing in the 1930s as Hollywood movie stars built their smaller getaways from their Los Angeles area estates. Bob Hope, Frank Sinatra, Estée Lauder, and Bing Crosby built homes in these neighborhoods.
El Rancho Vista Estates
In the 1960s, Robert Fey built 70 homes designed by Donald Wexler and Ric Harrison in the El Rancho Vista Estates. Noted residents included Jack LaLanne and comic Andy Dick.
Historic homes in the Warm Sands area date from the 1920s and many were built from adobe. It also includes small resorts and the Ramon Mobile Home Park. Noted residents have included screenwriter Walter Koch, artist Paul Grimm, activist Cleve Jones and actor Wesley Eure.
The Mesa started off as a gated community developed in the 1920s near the Indian Canyons. Noted residents have included King Gillette, Zane Grey, Clark Gable, Carole Lombard, Suzanne Somers, Herman Wouk, Henry Fernandez, Barry Manilow and Trina Turk. Distinctive homes include Wexler's "butterfly houses" and the "Streamline Moderne Ship of the Desert".
Tahquitz River Estates
Some of the homes in this neighborhood date from the 1930s. The area was owned by Pearl McCallum McManus and she started building homes in the neighborhood after World War II ended. Dr. William Scholl (Dr. Scholl's foot products) owned a 10-acre estate here. Today the neighborhood is the largest neighborhood organization with 600 homes and businesses within its boundaries.
During World War II, the original Sunmor Estates area was the western portion the Palm Springs Army Airfield. Homes here were developed by Robert Higgins and the Alexander Construction Company. Actor and former mayor Frank Bogert bought his home for $16,000 and lived there for more than 50 years.
Historic Tennis Club
Impoverished artist Carl Eytel first set up his cabin on what would become the Tennis Club in 1937. Another artist in the neighborhood, who built his Moroccan-style "Dar Marrac" estate in 1924, was Gordon Coutts. Other estates include Samuel Untermyer's Mediterranean style villa (now The Willows Historic Palm Springs Inn), the Casa Cody Inn, built by Harriet and Harold William Cody (cousin of Buffalo Bill Cody) and the Ingleside Inn, built in the 1920s by the Humphrey Birge family. The neighborhood now has about 400 homes, condos, apartments, inns and restaurants.
Las Palmas neighborhoods
To the west of Palm Canyon Drive are the Vista Las Palmas and Old Las Palmas neighborhoods. These areas also feature distinctive homes and celebrity estates.
The 5 Best Neighborhoods in Palm Desert, CA
Palm Desert, CA is a thriving city that’s been growing and growing since the 1980s. In fact, it was one of the fastest growing communities in California during the 1980s and ‘90s.
Palm Desert, CA is a thriving city that’s been growing and growing since the 1980s. In fact, it was one of the fastest growing communities in California during the 1980s and ‘90s, and it continues to attract residents of all ages and backgrounds today for its fabulous climate, lifestyle, and shopping. It’s a popular winter destination, too, and many thousands have vacation homes here in addition to the 50,000 or so people who live here year round. Palm Desert has many gated neighborhoods, as well as those that are golfing or country club communities. So out of these, which are the best?
Chaparral Country Club
Out of many country clubs in Palm Desert, this is the only one known as “The Best Kept Secret in the Valley.” Chaparral Country Club has a central location just north of the heart of Palm Desert, within walking distance of the James Earl Carter Elementary School and close to other levels of schools and colleges, too. Various shopping opportunities are within a short drive, including Plaza de Monterey Shopping Center and the El Paseo shopping district.
Great restaurants, culture and attractions are all close by too, while the community itself features a Ted Robinson-designed 18-hole executive golf course, tennis courts, clubhouse, 21 swimming pools, and great views of the San Jacinto Mountains. There are 625 condos in total with very affordable prices of between $170,000 and $350,000 for recent sales.
Bighorn Golf Club
At the luxury end of the scale, homes are large and customized in the community of Bighorn, nestled in the southwest corner of the city in the foothills of the Santa Rosa Mountains. This very private neighborhood has some of the Palm Desert’s most expensive real estate with individual luxury homes starting at $1.5 million and heading upwards of $7 million. It’s not the most affordable place to live in the city, but the lifestyle and private setting are second to none, and it’s only five minutes drive from central Palm Desert and its shopping centers, restaurants, and other amenities. The neighborhood itself includes great views, two championship 18-hole golf courses, a clubhouse, pool, dining, business center, and more.
The neighborhood of Cahuilla Hills offers the same private setting as Bighorn but without the huge price tags. This is a non-golf community with a large selection of homes and lot sizes, ranging from 0.7 to 5 acres so it’s great for anyone who wants country living close to the city, including equestrian properties. There are great views from here and the shops and restaurants of Palm Desert’s popular El Paseo are just a few minutes drive away, as is Westfield Palm Desert. Being an unincorporated community, there are no HOA fees here and homes sell for anywhere between $325,000 to $1.5 million.
For convenience, there are not many neighborhoods better located than Hidden Palms. This condo community is relatively small and guard-gated but still has four pools, tennis courts, and lakes to enjoy, and best of all it’s within walking distance of the El Paseo shopping district with its great shops, restaurants and culture. HOA fees are low here as well, making it affordable, and home prices are affordable too, with recent homes selling for between $155,000 and $340,000.
Lantana is a neighborhood that’s good for all ages because it’s centrally located and it’s close to all levels of schools, including Palm Desert High School. This enclave of just 64 homes is set across four neat cul-de-sacs and features larger lots with newer single family homes, many with their own swimming pools. Because there are no community facilities, the HOA fees are low, but you’re close to everything that Palm Desert offers anyway. El Paseo is just a few minutes drive, as are restaurants, recreation, and more. Homes are rarely available in Lantana, and when they are they sell in the $500 thousands
Demographics for Palm Desert: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palm_Desert,_California