History of the Property

The Palms at Indian Head is at the site of the Old Hoberg Resort, the first major lodging facility in Borrego Springs. Built in 1947, the 20 acre resort was a favorite getaway for the Hollywood stars in the 1950’s. Past guests include Charles Laughton, Leo Carrillo, Andy Devine, Clark Gable, Lon Chaney Jr., Will Rodgers, Bing Crosby, James Arness, Frank Morgan and Marilyn Monroe to name a few. The property featured a landing strip, an oversized Olympic pool, cocktail lounge, restaurant, bungalow retreats, horseback riding, shuffleboard and tennis.

The original lodge burned to the ground in 1958 as a result of a water heater explosion on the second floor. Residents of the valley at the time remarked at how the fire lit up the valley that fateful night. The present lodge was built that same year and opened as The Borrego Palms Resort, the new building was designed in the mid-century modern style of that period. The resort changed hands many times during that period and with each new owner came a new twist; a nudist retreat, school for handicapped children and detention facility for bad boys. Since its last use the property remained empty for fifteen years.

During those years, the property fell into serious disrepair. The 56 bungalow retreats were considered a fire hazard by the fire marshal. The owner at that time was told to either bring the units up to code or tear them down. He chose the latter and left us with photo opportunities for our guests. When we obtained the property in November of 1993, the roofing material was gone and it had been raining through the building for approximately two years. 

About Our Name

We named the property “The Palms At Indian Head” because of all the beautiful palms on the property; we have native Californian Fan Palms (those with the wide trunks and beards) Mexican Fan Palms (the tall thin palms) and producing Date Palms (on the far side of the pool) and because we are located at the base of Indian Head Mountain which is directly behind us and a little to the North, forming the Northern side of Palm Canyon. Indian Head Mountain is a conspicuous landmark seen and admired from most locations in Borrego Valley, and one of the few named summits in the San Ysidro Mountains. The mountain was named by the Cahuilla Indians, and the name translates to “Rain in the Face,” from a distance the mountain looks like an Indian with headdress, looking straight up into the sky.

History of The Palms at Indian Head