PALM SPRINGS, Calif. – One of the most iconic actresses of all time, Marilyn Monroe, has returned to the city where she was discovered! A 26-foot tall “Forever Marilyn” sculpture was unveiled last month in downtown Palm Springs, on the corner of Palm Canyon Drive and Tahquitz Canyon Way. The dramatic statue by American artist Seward Johnson represents arguably the most famous image of Marilyn, taken from the film The Seven Year Itch, and will be on display until June 2013.
To celebrate the arrival of this new attraction, the Palm Springs Bureau of Tourism has rounded up activities for visitors to “Play Like Marilyn” and celebrate the life of this legendary star.
In 1949, Marilyn Monroe was “discovered” at Charlie Farrell’s Racquet Club in Palm Springs by Johnny Hyde from William Morris Agency. After spotting her having photos taken by the poolside, he signed Marilyn to a contract and she soon became a legend. One of her most iconic images, the famous subway-grate scene where her skirt billows in the wind, was captured in 1954 and used by 20th Century Fox to generate publicity for The Seven Year Itch.
Palm Springs has been a place for celebrities to escape the hustle and bustle of showbiz since the 1920s. The legendary two-hour rule of Hollywood studios meant that actors under contract had to be available within 120 minutes from the studio for last-minute filming or photo shoots. With such a rich history – and the summer season fast approaching – the Palm Springs Bureau of Tourism is inviting visitors to “Play Like Marilyn” and experience the old Hollywood glamour of this vibrant city:
Learn About Marilyn: Take a Celebrity Tour
Marilyn Monroe lived in a ’50s bungalow-style house in the Las Palmas neighbourhood. During a celebrity tour, visitors will hear the secrets and stories of the stars and see the home where Marilyn once lived, together with the former homes of a whole host of celebrities including Frank Sinatra, Elizabeth Taylor and the Elvis and Priscilla Honeymoon House.
Pay Homage to Marilyn: Palm Canyon Drive
Similar to the famous Hollywood Walk of Fame, the Palm Springs Walk of Stars has nearly 350 Golden Palm Stars embedded in the sidewalks throughout downtown Palm Springs. Marilyn Monroe’s star is located at 101 S. Palm Canyon Drive, adjacent to the “Forever Marilyn” sculpture.
Shop Like Marilyn: Vintage Design
Palm Springs has an eclectic collection of fashion boutiques and resale outlets for visitors to shop for vintage dresses and jewellery, fine art and Marilyn memorabilia. So why not shop for that special something and recreate the glamour for which Marilyn was famed?
Stay Like Marilyn: Vacation Homes and Boutique Hotels
Visitors who want to live like Marilyn can rent the historic Sand Acre Estate and stay in her private tower bedroom with balcony, which was also her hideaway to spend time with Joe DiMaggio. Marilyn also stayed in a boutique hotel, now called the Palm Springs Rendezvous, and her alleged room is called the “Pretty in Pink” room – perfectly pink for a Marilyn fan.
During the course of the year, special events will take place in Palm Springs to celebrate Marilyn’s birthday in June and the 50th anniversary of her death in August. Visitors from all over the world are lured to Palm Springs for its Hollywood legacy, year-round sunshine and array of attractions that make it truly like no place else.