The Rich and Interesting History of Borrego Springs

Borrego Springs has a long and rich history. The term "Borrego" in the Spanish language means little lamb and refers to many years ago when large herds of bighorn sheep roamed freely around the area. The first official presence of a European origin was recorded in 1772 when a Lieutenant Fages, an officer in the ranks of the San Diego Presidio, travelled through the Borrego area in search of military deserters. The Lieutenant camped with the Kumeyaay Indian Tribe who inhabited this area of the Anza-Borrego Desert for many years and related the story to others in the years to come.

Another famous traveler of the area was Juan Bautista De Anza who discovered the beauty of Borrego while he was on a journey to find a better route for travel from Sonora Mexico to various areas of California. He led an exploratory group of twenty-five and they quickly spread the word about the impressive landscape discovered in this particular region.

One hundred years would pass until homesteading by cattle ranchers began in the Borrego area between 1875 and 1880. However, the significant growth of Borrego Springs occurred with the digging of the very first water well in the 1920's which brought a surge in the farming industry to the area.

Paved roads would wait until almost twenty years later when the U.S. military used the area for World War II military operations. Several years after the war ended and the military left the area, developers saw the potential in the Borrego Springs area and began plans to build a small resort community. One of the very first resorts was the Hoberg Resort, which was a holiday home for many of Hollywood's biggest stars of the 50's and 60's.

Several Hollywood productions have even taken place in Borrego such as the movie "Bugsy" which featured Warren Betty and the TV show "The X-Files" which featured two episodes in Anza-Borrego Desert.

Just like flourishing town Borrego has gone through its share of ups and downs. Back in 1965 the Park Clubhouse was chained shut during a bankruptcy dispute and remained that way for over thirty years. There have been some significant dates in the history of Borrego Springs, below are just a few that highlight the some of the changes and development over time to the small community.

Significant Dates in Borrego Springs History

    1942-The U.S. military begins using Borrego for training exercises and military planning operations.

    1945-The first power line is installed in Borrego.

    1948-The Hobert Resort opens its doors and becomes a favorite of the Hollywood elite for many years to come.

    1965-The Di Giorgio Company develops The Mall and starts to develop other properties in Borrego as well.

    1982-Rams Hill Country Club begins construction.

    2004-A sixty-five million dollar golf course is planned and designed for the Rams Hill Country Club.

    2011-A public golf course, the Montesoro, reopens to the public.