Explore Palm Springs: Canyon Country Club
Opening attracted Lucille Ball, Bert Parks
The Canyon Country Club officially opened in October 1962 in South Palm Springs.
Courtesy of the Palm Springs Historical Society
Palm Springs Mayor Frank Bogert marked the opening of the beautiful Canyon Country Club (CCC) with a ribbon cutting ceremony in October of 1962.
The CCC included a posh $1.5 million clubhouse and championship 18-hole golf course. Palm Springs Civic leaders, superstars of the entertainment industry and the local country club set all came out to christen this exclusive, private country club nestled in the canyons of south Palm Springs.
Some of the notables on hand for the opening gala were comedienne, actress and studio executive, Lucille Ball and her husband, Gary Morton; Bert Parks, best known for hosting the Miss America telecast, and the No. 1 tennis player in the world, Richard “Pancho” Gonzales.
First National Realty and Construction Co. built the Canyon Country Club clubhouse designed by Don Wexler and Ric Harrison, and were beginning to construct the custom homes surrounding the golf course.
William F. Bell designed the golf course with six water traps, including one lake with a fountain that shoots water more than 100 feet in the air.
The combined golf courses, north and south were part of the largest land lease with local members of the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians ever approved by the government.
The North Course was used by the CCC membership and the South Course was a public course, which also served the guests staying at the Canyon Hotel.
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