The best is yet to come and won’t it be fine….” If Indian Wells’ storied and successful past is any indication, the lyrics from this classic Frank Sinatra song may be prophetic for this prosperous desert community, because the future of Indian Wells is poised to be even brighter than the past. Through years of astute leadership, planning, and ingenuity, Indian Wells’ dedicated City Council — composed of Mayor Ed Monarch, Mayor Pro Tem Conrad Negron Sr., Rob Bernheimer, Mary T. Roche, and Larry Spicer — has helped the city achieve status as one of the premier residential resorts and vacation destinations in the country. Located amid the backdrop of the breathtaking Santa Rosa Mountains, guests and residents alike are continually lured to the many amenities the city offers, including four world-class resorts, a renowned golf resort and tennis stadium, sparkling pools, amazing spas, a variety of cultural programs, and more. Indeed, this idyllic, centrally located desert city offers a peerless experience that genuinely evokes a state of overall well-being.
Many new residents tell us that although it may have been the sheer physical beauty of the area that initially drew them to Indian Wells, the quality of life that we champion is what inspired them to relocate to our remarkable city,” says Indian Wells Mayor Ed Monarch, who has served on the City Council since 1997.
As the City of Indian Wells approaches its 40th anniversary (officially July 14, 2007), the city’s commitment to excellence in every facet of community life remains front and center. City Council continues to embark on a path of strategic fiscal planning to ensure that residents and visitors have access to the best that life has to offer. An impressive list of recent accomplishments includes securing the prestigious Pacific Life Open at the state-of-the-art Indian Wells Tennis Garden for the next 20 years and supporting the Garden’s efforts to expand the stadium’s use as a year-round venue for concerts and numerous special events. Moreover, the city’s acclaimed public golf resort is now in the midst of a makeover that will secure its world-class reputation for decades to come. In the not-too-distant future, a new 50,000-square-foot clubhouse will serve as a stunning cornerstone for two championship 18-hole golf courses designed by top golf course architects Clive Clark and John Fought.
From its panoramic terraces, clubhouse guests will be able to enjoy unparalleled views of the courses, mountains, and adjacent luxury resorts. And like the city, all four of these upscale hotel properties — the Hyatt Grand Champions Resort and Spa, Indian Wells Resort Hotel, Miramonte Resort & Spa, and Renaissance Esmeralda Resort and Spa — continue to reinvest in adding upgrades and amenities. The Miramonte, in fact, is now undergoing an 8,000-square-foot ballroom expansion. Moreover, three of the hotels offer the finest fitness and spa facilities in Southern California, including the Hyatt’s Agua Serena Medical and Skin Spa.
Additionally, the strong alliance the city maintains with its resort partners enables Indian Wells residents to reap several benefits. Composed of volunteer citizens, the city’s Community Activities Committee coordinates many networking events, giving residents a chance to meet and mingle. Hosted by the resorts, these popular social activities include the winter season’s “Dining Well” series and “Cool to Be Hot” in the summertime.
City Hall, Indian Wells’ other volunteer committees, and a thriving Chamber of Commerce also actively nurture a genuine sense of community. City Council and staff host town hall meetings throughout the year to exchange vital information on community affairs with city residents and business owners. And, Indian Wells’ residential country clubs often function as “cities within a city,” offering a range of amenities — including golf courses, fitness centers, spas and social/educational programs — for their homeowners.
Likewise fundamental to providing a tranquil environment is the city’s focus on public health and safety. Indian Wells enjoys one of the lowest crime rates in the valley, and area residents now have convenient access to superb nonemergency health-care services at the Eisenhower Urgent Care Center at Indian Wells. Open since January 2006 and located in the Wall Street West complex off Highway 111, the well-appointed, 3,350-square-foot facility has already received top service ratings from patients.
The friendship, caring, and camaraderie that exists within the Indian Wells community translate into a spirit of philanthropy that extends well beyond the city’s meticulous neighborhoods and wide, palm-lined streets.
“The city’s fiscal prudence, as well as the generosity of our residents, has enabled Indian Wells to take the lead or participate in a variety of charitable endeavors,” notes Mayor Monarch.
Recently, Indian Wells City Council approved a $5 million grant to aid Eisenhower Medical Center’s expansion. A leading advocate of higher education initiatives in the Coachella Valley, the city also donated $5 million to the new Palm Desert satellite campus of California State University, San Bernardino. And this year, Indian Wells City Council allocated more than $238,000 to support 33 community-based and nonprofit organizations in the Coachella Valley. The city also serves as a valley leader for arts and education initiatives, contributing substantial funding to venues and programs ranging from the McCallum Theatre, Palm Springs Art Museum, and the Palm Springs International Film Festival to Desert Town Hall — Indian Wells, The Living Desert’s Wildlights, and the Children’s Discovery Museum of the Desert.
On the eve of its milestone birthday, City Hall is not content to simply rest on past laurels and achievements. With several projects planned or already underway, city officials have actively adopted a “smart growth” philosophy not only to serve as a reinvestment in the city’s economic growth and vitality, but also to retain Indian Wells’ friendly ambiance, tranquil surroundings, and distinctive luxury appeal. Upcoming residential and retail developments will include Province at Indian Wells, a 40-acre Mediterranean-inspired residential subdivision; Miles Crossing, an upscale retail district; Towne Center, a retail/entertainment complex; and two luxurious condominium hotels: a Fairmont and Remington Las Montañas. The city is working closely with developers to ensure that they utilize noise reduction techniques, add shaded areas, plant beautiful and eco-friendly landscaping, include pedestrian and communal areas, and more — all in an effort to preserve the quality of life that Indian Wells residents and guests cherish.
What is it really like to live in Indian Wells? Perhaps the words of Jan Hawkins, a longtime Indian Wells resident and the city’s 2006 Athena Award recipient, say it best: “The quality of life in Indian Wells is beyond compare … We just feel so fortunate to have the neighbors that we do. The City Council has directed the city so expertly in its growth …. We love living here; I expect to retire here … It’s truly been a great experience.”