I spent the last few nights in Suite 221, the Mamie Van Doren suite, at the Andreas Hotel & Spa in Palm Springs. I slept like a baby in that big, wrought iron canopy bed, wrapped in the lovely, warm feeling of this new suite named after me.
The Andreas put on a fabulous party to christen 221, with Palm Springs Mayor Ron Oden introducing me, and shoals of friends drinking champagne and touring the suite. It is thrilling to know that so many future guests at the Andreas will share the glamor of the suite that bears my name, as well as some of my Hollywood memories.
A little bit about the suite: it’s done in a sort of Art Deco/Hollywood Glam style. Black and white, crystal chandelier and lamps, wrought iron, and memorabilia. I’ve loaned my portrait done by Olivia De Berardinis–Jungle Red; a copy of Playboy with me on the cover; oodles of photos of me from movies; and photos of me in Palm Springs history–as Miss Palm Springs and as queen of the Palm Springs Rodeo in the 1950s. It’s just the kind of place you would want to party in and tell your friends you slept in Mamie’s bed.
There’s a lot of me in the history of Palm Springs. I was here for the dedication of the palm trees that line Palm Canyon Blvd. I can see them out the window of my suite right now. I was discovered here, of course, by Howard Hughes after he spotted me when I won the Miss Palm Springs beauty contest. My suite is one block from the giant statue of Marilyn Monroe on Tahquitz Canyon Blvd. and from my star on the Palm Springs Walk of Stars across the street. I’m going to go visit my star later today.
Some special thanks are in order: to Janie Hughes, with love, for all her work in making this possible; to Gina Laughton, the Andreas Hotel manager who took my suggestions for the room’s decor and made it all beautiful; to Zack Cordero, the assistant manager who makes miracles happen; Reggie Cameron, the p.r. whiz who made sure everyone knew; and to the thoughtful, efficient staff at the Andreas. Everyone contributed to make the party fun and my stay in 221 memorable.
Enjoy the pictures of the festivities of friends stopping to chat and sipping bubbly. Video is on the way as well.