Elvis Honeymoon Hideaway gained its fame in 1967
PALM SPRINGS — One matter recently before the Palm Springs City Council did not garner a great deal of attention or even headlines, but it was significant, nonetheless. In a roundabout way, it involved three words: Elvis Honeymoon Hideaway.
Councilors approved a Mills Act Historic Property Preservation Agreement between the city of Palm Springs and Daniel E. Bridge, owner of the famed Alexander constructed “House of Tomorrow,” also known as the “Elvis Honeymoon Hideaway,” 1350 Ladera Circle.
The futuristic dwelling in Vista Las Palmas is a stylish Midcentury home, no doubt. But it also holds a special place in rock ‘n’ roll history. The home is where Elvis and Priscilla Presley went after their secretive wedding in 1967.
Ironically, the famed inhabitants aren’t what helped qualify the property for the Mills Act Agreement. The Act has been called the single most important economic incentive program in California for the restoration and preservation of qualified historic buildings by private property owners.
In September, the City Council designated the property located at 1350 Ladera Circle a Class One Historic Site by adopting Resolution No. 24942. In accordance with California Government Code, the legislative body of a city may contract
with the owner to restrict the use of the property to carry out goals of historic preservation of the property. Such a contract is commonly referred to as a “Mills Act Agreement.” It provides for possible alternative property tax rate calculations in exchange for specific and ongoing preservation and maintenance of the property, specifically its historically significant elements and characteristics. Approval of the contract may result in a decrease in the property tax collected for the property.
Although singer and actor Elvis Presley and his wife Priscilla rented the home for a brief period in 1967 and had their honeymoon at the home, that event itself does not constitute a meaningful contribution under this criterion.
The Alexander residence exhibits exceptional historic significance because of its association with architect William Krisel, its association with Robert Alexander, a person of local significance, as a unique example of architecture from the mid-20th century period, and because it reflects unique construction characteristics.
The home is historically significant for its association with the lives of Robert and Helene Alexander. Robert Alexander and his father George ran the Alexander Development Company which is credited for transforming Palm Springs from an enclave of wealthy industrialists and notables from the movie industry to a vacation and retirement community accessible to the middle class. Both Robert and Helene were active in community affairs and philanthropy.
Fans of Elvis, the king of rock’n’roll, as well as fans of architecture win in this matter.
- Elvis Honeymoon Hideaway: Shutterstock