Explore Palm Springs: Desert Fashion Plaza

Downtown Palm Springs shopping project never fulfilled its destiny

Taken in August 1985, the Desert Fashion Plaza was under construction.

Palm Springs Historical Society

In 1984, Edward J. DeBartolo said, "Desert Fashion Plaza expresses the diversity, style and uncompromising quality of this sophisticated international marketplace. Conceiving and assembling this plan required an equally diverse blend of skills, talents and expertise. I am proud to commit the resources of the DeBartolo Corporation to a project of such scope and vitality."

When the Desert Fashion Plaza was completed, it was called a "salvation" of downtown. Unfortunately, the Desert Fashion Plaza would never attain full tenant capacity and many store fronts would remain unoccupied.

In years to come, retail sales declined and in 1991, Silverwoods men's clothing and Marie Callender's Restaurant moved out of the still partially vacant Desert Fashion Plaza.

Maxim's de Paris Suite Hotel soon became Hyatt Regency Suites. In 1992, I. Magnin also closed its doors reasoning that it was not a "suitable location" for their store.

As Palm Springs celebrates its 75th anniversary, there are a multitude of ways to learn more about this desert treasure. One of the more intriguing methods is by exploring the city’s history.

Weekly, the Palm Springs Historical Society will share a story whose time and place corresponds with today.

The Palm Springs Historical is located at 221 S. Palm Canyon Drive. For more information, visit www.pshistoricalsociety.org

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