This blog explores the history of Phoenix, Arizona and a little bit of Los Angeles and San Francisco, California. This blog is not supported by advertising, it's supported by the generosity of my patrons on Patreon. Thank you!

Going to the Biltmore Hotel in the 1940s, Phoenix, Arizona


Let's go stay at the Biltmore Hotel in the 1940s. It's waaaayyyy outside of the city limits, at 24th Street and Camelback Road. It's quite a place, and very expensive, so it's lucky we're rich.

Actually we're rich and famous, and we want to go somewhere where we can relax and be far away from the crowds, the photographers, the press, and all of that. Got your sunglasses? Let's go!

The 1930s have been a rough time, because of the Depression, and the years of World War II weren't very pleasant, either, but now that all of that is behind us, let's go enjoy life a bit. It's January, and I understand that the weather in Phoenix is just gorgeous at this time of year.

Sky Harbor in the 1930s

We're flying into Sky Harbor. Not much to see, just a landing strip and a few buildings nearby the railroad tracks. It sure is beautiful here in the desert - the air is so fresh and clean. I feel like I'm breathing easier already, even though I'm smoking a cigar that puts out more fumes than one of my factories in Pittsburg. It's good to be rich!

Flying over the Biltmore in the 1940s, the entrance is at lower left, at 24th Street and Camelback Road.

The drive up to the Biltmore is due north on 24th Street, which is right where the airport is. How convenient! Look at that Mountain over there, it looks just like a camel lying down. I wonder what they call that mountain?

Looking east at Camelback Mountain in the 1940s from about 24th Street

We're at 24th Street and Camelback Road (oh, that must be the name of the mountain!) and there's a long drive going past a golf course on our right leading up to the Biltmore. Look! A canal! We're crossing the bridge now.

The Biltmore Hotel in the 1940s, Phoenix, Arizona.

The place looks great. Kind of a Frank Lloyd Wright feeling, although I'm told that he didn't design it. It was built way back in '29, but it still looks nice. Wow, we're way out in the country - the only other house I see is that big one up on the hill, built on the fortune made on chewing gum, which I think is funny.

The Wrigley Mansion in the 1940s, Phoenix, Arizona.

Lend me a dime, I want to tip the porter. Yeah, I want to be lavish, maybe you should make it a quarter! We have a lot of bags for them to carry. While they're putting our bags away, let's go wander around the grounds. I understand the pool has a high dive, and I'm looking forward to seeing if I can still do the flips that I used to do back in my younger days!


Swimming pool at the Biltmore in the 1940s. You're walking towards the high dive.

Now that we're settled in, I just want to sit here, and drink all of this in. Yes, I know that you want to ride up into the foothills, I'm be along in a minute, find me a gentle horse.

The Biltmore Hotel in the 1940s, in the foothills of Squaw Peak (now called Piestewa Peak).


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