Historic Hotel Del Monte

Hotel Del Monte publications by Jo Mora

Drawing of Californio dancers and musician

Artist Jo Mora produced a series of historical menus in 1933 that were also used in Hotel Del Monte's national marketing campaigns. 

Line drawing of Bacchus caricature holding urn

Mora also illustrated the merry booklet, Cocktail Recipes Mixed by Famous People for a Famous Hotel, that celebrated the repeal of Prohibition in December 1933.

Recipes contributed by Del Monte guests include Edgar Rice Burroughs' Tarzon Special and the Marx Brothers' concoction for Honeymoon Punch, with its parenthetical note that "one of these and the honeymoon is over."

Three coctail recipes

(Below) Artist Jo Mora shown in his Pebble Beach studio in the 1920's.

Joe Mora, artist, in studio with sculpture

For more information about Mora and other notable artists at Hotel Del Monte, go to the tab Del Monte's Art Treasures.

Hotel Del Monte in the 20th Century

In 1919, Samuel F.B. Morse, then 34 years old, obtained financial backing from San Francisco capitalist Herbert Fleischhacker and a few friends and purchased the Hotel Del Monte and about 18,000 acres of land spread throughout the Monterey Peninsula, Pebble Beach and Carmel Valley to establish Del Monte Properties Company, forerunner of today's Pebble Beach Company. Morse then set about to transform and rejuvenate the Hotel Del Monte, making it a sports empire based on golf and other outdoor athletics.  His success brought him widespread recognition as one of America’s leading executives.

 

Aerial photo of Hotel 1920


(Above) Hotel Del Monte in 1920, shortly after the establishment of Del Monte Properties Company.

Rise of the Spanish Revival Hotel Del Monte

Remembrance menu from 1926 celebration of rebuilding of hotel. Aerial image of hotel on cover.

A devastating fire in 1924 destroyed the main building of the Victorian era Hotel Del Monte. Morse and Carl Stanley worked with architects Lewis Hobart and Clarence Tantau to create the Spanish Revival Hotel Del Monte which was dedicated in May 1926. The celebration drew more than 3,000 guests.

In the midst of the Jazz Age and Roaring Twenties, the new Hotel Del Monte captured the imagination of a nation on the move and a society undergoing rapid change.

Charles Crocker deserves credit for developing the original Hotel Del Monte and establishing trendsetting programs for the resort. Sam Morse's original thinking reinvigorated an aging Del Monte and created an indelible legacy of art and architecture and helped to preserve the region's unique culture, history and environment.

A Famous Hotel Del Monte Recipe

This recipe describing the Hotel Del Monte was included in the 1933 booklet, Cocktail Recipes Mixed by Famous People for a Famous Hotel.

Fine Art of Living recipe

Celebrities Visit Del Monte

Amelia Earhart

Autographed photo of Jean Harlow

Many notables and celebrities were frequent guests at Hotel Del Monte. Above are Ameila Earhart stepping from the portico to the Sun Terrace and an autographed photo from Jean Harlow to Freddie Stanley, teenage son of hotel manager, Carl Stanley.

Autographed photo of Gene Tunney

(Above) Prize fighter Gene Tunney also autographed a photo for Freddie Stanley. (Below) Comedian Bob Hope was a close personal friend of S.F.B. Morse, president of Del Monte Properties Company. Hope, shown stepping on the stage in the Bali Room (today's El Prado Room in Herrrmann Hall) brought a star-studded cast to Del Monte to entertain the sailors there during World War II.

Bob Hope

Bing Crosby, another close personal friend of Morse, later said about him: "I shall always be grateful to that eminent sportsman Sam Morse, the man whose vision, dedication and devotion to quality made this one of the showplaces of the world."