Owners Bob Grinchuk and Reuel Olin of Palm Springs and San Diego bought it two years ago with the plan of turning it into "Palm Springs' largest full service gay and lesbian resort."
...Olin has a doctorate in performance studies at New York University and was a producer and director at the San Diego Diversionary Theatre.Olin
said they envisioned the resort containing a dinner theater from the beginning.
"This is a full-service resort in every sense of the word," he
said."This (Mainstage) was conceived as a dinner theater, but there will be show-only tickets as well, and drinking and cabaret afterwards at the V Lounge."Olin
and Grinchuk also have taken care to preserve the historical significance of the property.
They have refurbished 42 casitas in a '50s style, according to local designer Hugh Gaspar's
vision, because they were then part of a secret "fat farm" for movie stars called the Elizabeth Arden Beauty Farm, Olin
The expanded Butterfield's Adobe Restaurant remains in its original form because the owners claim it is one of the oldest adobe structures in the valley.Olin
said the restaurant was renamed Butterfield's Adobe because the structure was "reputedly" a Butterfield's Overland stagecoach stop in the 19th century.
Actually, the Bradshaw Stage Route from the gold fields of La Paz, Ariz., through Banning was the Coachella Valley's first road in the 19th century.Both Murphy and Hillery said they hadn't heard of a Butterfield stage passing through the valley.Hillery, who is writing a book about the history of Cathedral City, said the town never was a stagecoach stop.
said they're keeping the name on the restaurant."We're basing it on the history we've heard," he
said the resort also has a long gay history.
"This was the first gay resort in the Coachella Valley," he
said."The second was Desert Palms.The reason this wound up in Cathedral City is because Palm Springs did not want to have a gay resort.It has evolved greatly."Olin
said their mission is to make the Villa "the finest gay and lesbian resort in the world."