Hacienda Del Sol’s story began 90 years ago in 1929 when John and Helen Murphey created this beautiful desert retreat. Before the property was one of Arizona’s top guest ranches, it was a prestigious ranch school for the daughters of some of society’s most elite families. Walking through the inner courtyard today, you can still see some of the names of these families forever memorialized above the doors of the historic guestrooms. Some of these well-known names include Pillsbury, Maxwell, Westinghouse and Vanderbilt, to name a few.
In 1944, the resort transitioned to a guest ranch, attracting well-known stars like John Wayne and Clark Gable. Legend has it, The Casita Grande, still one of those most booked rooms at Hacienda Del Sol, was the secret spot for Spencer Tracy and Katherine Hepburn’s romantic rendezvous.
Over the years the boutique resort has seen several renovations and additions including thirty-two beautiful guestrooms in 2015, an infinity-edge pool overlooking the Santa Catalina Mountain Range and a stunning ballroom that has hosted some of Tucson’s most gorgeous weddings and celebrations. In the midst of new additions and updates, Hacienda Del Sol has taken great care to preserve the original feel created by John and Helen Murphey and renowned architect, Josias Joesler.
Hand-crafted furniture, beautiful wood-beam ceilings and colorful Talavera tiles are still sprinkled throughout every guestroom from the historic rooms to the newly-built Catalina rooms. The hallways and gathering areas of the resort feature black and white photographs of the schoolgirls and original architectural elements; many that still stand today. If you look closely at the photographs, you will notice original pieces of furniture set up throughout the resort today. There’s plenty of history to see and share at Hacienda Del Sol and plenty of small details to be enjoyed by everyone who stops by for a closer look.
The current owners of Hacienda Del Sol purchased the property in 1995 and are proud to be the longest group of investors to care for the property. “We consider ourselves to be stewards of Hacienda Del Sol’s unique history and we take great pride in preserving it and passing the stories on to our guests”, Tom Firth, Managing Partner at Hacienda Del Sol, says. The entire Hacienda Del Sol team is excited to see what the next 90 years brings to our historic resort in the heart of the foothills.
To learn more about the storied history of Hacienda Del Sol Guest Ranch Resort, visit our History page or stop by for a tour. See you soon.