California’s “Big Four” railroad tycoons built the Hotel del Monte to be the most elegant seaside resort in the world. Although it boasted 126 landscaped acres when it was constructed in 1880, pampered guests, including presidents and kings, stars and magnates, needed a larger playground. Owners added the 7,000-acre Del Monte Forest and 17-Mile Drive, planned to optimize picturesque spots along the Monterey coast, like Cypress Point and Pebble Beach. Burned to the ground in 1887 and 1924, the Del Monte became more luxurious with each incarnation, at one time incorporating a glass-roofed swimming pavilion, racetrack, lake, tennis courts, and Del Monte Golf Course, now the oldest continuously operating golf course in the West. The third hotel became the Naval Postgraduate School in 1952.
About the Author
Author Julie Cain, operations manager of Stanford University’s Engineering Library, discovered the landmark hotel through her fascination with its famous Arizona Garden. Now a recognized authority, she draws from her own collection as well as the impressive archives of the City of Monterey, Stanford University, and Pat Hathaway to lead readers on a visual journey through the history of one of the most sumptuous hotels of all times, in its heyday, a city unto itself.