Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Resort, Film Set, Prison, Naval Base: The Norconian Resort

Sixty-seven years ago this week, on December 8, 1941, The Norconian Resort in Norco, CA became a United States Naval Hospital. Before it's war service and sad decline, The Norconian was a destination for classic stars and home to a number of movies filmed on the resort grounds.

Born in 1929, and after on-again/off-again operation, the resort lived a short life and closed in 1940. In 1941, the Navy purchased the grounds, later opening it as a hospital the day after Pearl Harbor day. Since then, the grounds have been home to a prison and continue to have a naval presence to this day. And through all of this, original buildings and decor remain, in rough condition, behind a fence.



Laura from dropped me a note the other day about The Norconian's connection to some of Bob's early films, specifically Love in the Rough and Their Own Desire with Norma Shearer. We've talked about Love in the Rough's connection in a past post, but Their Own Desire was news to me. After some research (tough work!), Laura was able to confirm that the pool scenes in Desire match photos of The Norconian's pool, high dive, and bleachers. So much for Lake Michigan!

I am far from an expert on the topic, but these resources can fill you in more:

8 comments:

stellypippin said...

Thanks for this awesome post - it's one of those little treasures in California that still exists today and hopefully, won't go the way of the Ambassador Hotel. Hope it does get perserved, for it's historical value!

la peregrina said...

Yes, thank you, Carrie, and thank you Arcadia Publishing. :)

Carrie said...

It just amazes me that the place sits there, kinda hidden "in the background."

I plan to pick up the book also!

Laura said...

I ordered the book tonight! That was a great find you made. The author was featured in the Huell Howser program I mentioned about the Norconian. If I can ever catch up my work load, I might do a post on it (grin). Loved your post.

Best wishes,
Laura

Carrie said...

I just bought it this morning - I want a kickback! ;)

Laura said...

LOL!!

Laura

Tracy said...

ot--but if anyone catches any information on Van Johnson as he passed away today, would you pls post? I am so bummed out that I am not going to see him now in Jan.
Thanks.

Carrie said...

T - Check out NY Times, they have an obit up.

I watched TCM's short with everyone who passed away this year and almost teared up...