Indian Canyons Neighborhood History

Once the exclusive domain of the Agua Caliente Indians, development began on the Indian Canyons Neighborhood in the early 1960s and the first golfers teed off at the Canyon Country Club golf course in October 1962.

The iconic clubhouse was designed by famed architects Donald Wexler and Ric Harrison. The Canyon Country Club, now known as the Indian Canyons North Course, was the first 18-hole golf course in Palm Springs. (The O’Donnell golf course, also located within Palm Springs city limits, dates from the 1920s but is a 9-hole course.)

With the Canyon Country Club and the newly opened Canyon Hotel Racquet and Golf Resort serving as its anchors, the Indian Canyons Neighborhood was born. Orange County developer Harry Kelso was brought in to create high-end homes and condominiums of varying designs and models, as were Arizona builder Paul Butler and Roy Fey of Fey’s Canyon Estates in Palm Springs. To learn more about Harry Kelso and his work in our neighborhood, where homes were built primarily from 1963 to 1970, click here.  Other architects and builders in the area include well-known mid-century architects Stan Sackley and William Krisel.

The allure of the Indian Canyons Neighborhood, then and now, is our location in the wind-free south end. Many Hollywood celebrities have made the Indian Canyons Neighborhood their home over the years including Fess Parker, Chuck Connors, David Janssen and Walt Disney, who donated the spectacular fountain that is located between holes 9 and 18 on the North course. For more information on the many celebrities who called our neighborhood home, check out “The Best Guide Ever to Palm Springs Celebrity Homes,” by Eric G. Meeks. Additional articles regarding the history of the Canyon Country Club golf course and our area can be found by clicking here, or here.  You may also visit the Palm Springs Historical Society archives, located in the Welwood Murray Memorial Library at 100 S. Palm Canyon Drive. (

As we witness the ongoing transformation of our downtown area, the Indian Canyons Neighborhood, with its rich history, will continue to evolve in new and exciting ways. Thank you for being a part of our progress.

Indian Canyons Celebrities

The club has a colorful history as a favorite haunt of Hollywood celebrities like Frank Sinatra, Bob Hope, Jack Benny, Dean Martin, Bing Crosby, Walt Disney, Sammy Davis, Jr., Johnny Carson, Chuck Conners, Jackie Gleason, and Milton Berle, as well as former U.S. Presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower, Lyndon B. Johnson, Gerald Ford, and Ronald Reagan.

Celebrities who lived in Indian Canyons:

  • Walt Disney – Camino Real
  • Chuck Conners (The Rifleman) – Camino Real
  • Don Adams (Get Smart) – Camino Real
  • David Janssen (The Fugitive) – Yosemite
  • Jerome Factor (Max Factor Cosmetics) – Via Estrella
  • Irving Mills (Discovered Cab Calloway, Duke Ellington, and Benny Goodman) – Murray Canyon
  • Ginny Simms (Actress) – Murray Canyon
  • Fred Williamson (Current resident, Football Player, Actor, Producer) – Calle Palo Fierro
  • Fess Parker (Davy Crockett) – Toledo
  • William Demarest (Actor) – Yosemite
  • Ralph Young (Sandler & Young) – Sierra Way
  • Bobby Milano/Keely Smith (Singers) – Murray Canyon

Canyon Country Club

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.

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.

Credit: Palm Springs Life
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