All RHE Gold Medallion homes had NuTone and Westinghouse kitchen applicances and the manuals you see below were included.
In 1959 Phillip Short, a local real estate broker, commissioned the firm of Wexler and Harrison to design forty condominium units in a Polynesian tiki theme in South Palm Springs. He named the development Royal Hawaiian Estates, and restricted the residents to Jewish adults, fifty-five or older. Phil launched an advertising media blitz that included a full-page ad in Grace Line magazine (featuring South American and Hawaii Cruises), KCMJ The Voice of the Desert, and many other local and national publications.
Royal Hawaiian Estates became home to Michael Levee, one of Hollywood's leading agents whose clients included Joan Crawford, Bette Davis, Mary Pickford, Jeanette MacDonald, and Cecil B. DeMille. In 1966, Michael became president of the Royal Hawaiian Estates HOA and lived at 243 Twin Palms Drive until his death in 1972. After becoming president, he sold two units, the first to Milton Krasner and the second to George Jessel.
Milton Krasner was an Oscar-winning Technicolor cinematographer of 1954's Three Coins in the Fountain. He was also a seven-time nominee noted for his vibrant compositions on many of 20th Century-Fox's biggest Cinemascope hits from the previous decade. Krasner lived at 117 Twin Palms Drive.
Perhaps the most colorful celebrity, Jessel starred in The Jazz Singer on Broadway, and produced several vaudeville-based film musicals. He is perhaps best remembered as America's Toastmaster General. He lived at 1788 South Palm Canyon.
Royal Hawaiian Estates' first resident, Mildred Lupher, was fond of describing Jessel's "whacky weekend" parties. Her eyes would sparkle as she described exotic Las Vegas showgirls floating on enormous ice cubes floating in the sunken pools. As she went on, my eyes would sparkle and spin at her description of glamorous high-fashion models striking a pose wearing 6" high-heels, scandalous bikinis, huge hoop earrings, and bouffant hair, while balancing a tray of very dry martinis.
Hawaiian music was piped to the pools and played twenty-four hours a day. (And you thought we invented the White Party?)
~ Bill Lewallen
For additional scoop on vintage Palm Springs celebrities, please read Palm Springs Confidential, by Howard Johns. Thanks to his must-read book, I was able to identify the unit numbers of Milton Krasner, Michael Levee, and George Jesse, as well as provide their biographical information.