10 Things You Didn’t Know About Indian Wells

It might be a far cry from the household names of New York, Chicago or L.A., but Indian Wells can still satiate your curiosity with its boundless charm. And while it’s a small city without a historic red carpet reputation, this lovely little town doesn’t let go when its desert tendrils drop into your heart.


1. Indian Wells got its name from the thriving Indian village that grew around a hand-built well in the Southern California desert.

In eternal commemoration of its origins, Indian Wells took its namesake from the Native American community that carved itself an oasis in the harsh climate of the desert. The Indian populace maintained its livelihood thanks to the well that supplied it with fresh water. The well was formed and shaped by the natives themselves in the 19th century.


2. The Colorado River gold mines gave new importance to Indian Wells’ geographical location.

In 1863, gold mines were discovered on the Colorado River. William D. Bradshaw constructed a trail from Los Angeles through the desert with the mines as a final destination. Indian Wells climbed in significance as it was one of the stops along this lucrative new trail, which opened up the area commercially and imbued it with new viability.


3. Date palms were another natural resource that catapulted Indian Wells into a newfound prosperity.

Outsiders started settling in Indian Wells in the following decades, taking advantage of profitable date palm ranches that Caleb Cook and his family had transformed into a successful industry. Cook created the first Deglet Noor garden, imported Saidy date palms from Egypt, and egged on Indian Wells’ second mayor to become a date rancher. Date palms were so crucial to Indian Wells that a 1922 publication proclaiming the city’s spectacular growth was also called “Date Palm”.

4. Indian Wells is one of the United States’ smallest, most sparsely populated cities.

With a permanent population of 5,345 (last recorded in 2016) and a total combined area of 37.79 km², Indian Wells is one of the tiniest US cities by population. San Francisco’s is around 165 times larger, and New York’s population dwarfs Indian Wells’ by approximately 1,612 times. However, it’s much roomier in Indian Wells than any of these large metropolises – at 131.2 people per square kilometre, you won’t be bumping into urban crowds in this petite Coachella Valley town.


5. Indian Wells is crazy about tennis, with the stats to prove it.

It’s pretty incredible that a speck of an American city would produce the 6th largest tennis tournament in the world, one of 9 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 high-level events operated by the Association of Tennis Professionals, and one of the 4 WTA Premier Mandatory tournaments of the Women’s Tennis Association. The Indian Wells Masters tennis tournament, known as the BNP Paribas Open, is held at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden, which is itself the 2nd largest tennis-specific stadium in the world. This is where tennis balls, stars and fans meet in heaven.

6. Indian Wells is one of the newest cities in the States.

If being perfectly proportioned wasn’t enough, Indian Wells is also a very young city on a relative timescale. Incorporated in 1967, it’s only been officially on the administrative map for 51 years. That’s much less than the average life expectancy of the city’s inhabitants, so it’s much younger than many of its residents!


7. Hot, dry desert best describes Indian Wells’ climate, but temperatures can still dip below freezing in winter.

Behold the conundrum of desert climates: the contrast in temperatures can be extreme, with summer heat reaching highs of 123°F and winter nights dropping to a chilly 19°F. Precipitation is one of the lowest across the US, so Indian Wells benefits from crisp, clear skies all year round and a dryness that makes even startingly high temperatures bearable.

8. Presidents, actors, singers and Miss America have all lived in and enjoyed Indian Wells.

We like keeping this a secret, but this quaint city has been home to Hollywood actor Tony Curtis, US President Dwight D. Eisenhower (who was also an avid golfer), 1960s singing sensation Jack Jones, and the 1952 recipient of the Miss America crown – Colleen Kay Hutchins. These high-profile, influential figures had one thing in common: an unwavering affection for the beautiful aura of Indian Wells.


9. Tennis talent flocks to Indian Wells and loves it every year.

One of the great side effects of the BNB Paribas Open is that we get to watch celebrities of the tennis world up close and personal while they work up a spectacle during some of the best tennis matches in the yearly sporting. Roger Federer, Venus Williams, Grigor Dimitrov, Elina Svitolina… Need we say more? How many can you recognize from this fabulous photoshoot?

10. Miramonte Resort & Spa is one of the city’s best-rated luxury resorts.

Hear, hear! In the land of desert elegance, Miramonte Resort & Spa sticks out like a shining gem. With our award-winning spa services, luscious location landscaped by desert mountains, uplifting pool lifestyle, tennis and golf amenities and California-inspired dining, we’ve saved the best revelation for last.

Discover Indian Wells while we pamper your senses and spoil you with our wellness expertise. Check out our menu of delights for the summer season. It won’t be long before you’re murmuring: take me back!