Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Gonna take a sentimental journey...

Shady Dell
I’m wearing one of my favorite 1940s dresses—desert print barkcloth with a matching bolero and belt. 1940s leather wedges, a 1940s purse, and 1940s-50s silver and bakelite "tiki god" earrings complete this outfit.

To celebrate my Sweetie's birthday and our anniversary, we decided to take a trip to Bisbee and stay at The Shady Dell. We've been talking about taking such a trip for ages, and decided we just couldn't wait any longer!

The Shady Dell is a vintage trailer park made up of aluminum trailers dating to the 1940s and 50s, plus a 1947 bus and a 1938 boat. Each has been beautifully restored and is chock full of droolworthy period details. The owners have truly gone the extra mile, piping in vintage music that you can listen to on reproduction radios provided in each trailer (when we arrived they had the radio on, making for an almost surreal experience), and providing classic movies that you can play on vintage TVs (they tucked a DVD player behind a curtain on our TV stand.) We rented the Royal Mansion, and the overall experience was a royal treat for sure! This 33' trailer was built in 1951, and was surely the height of luxury for travelers then (and now too!)

We left town Sunday morning, and stopped in Tombstone on the way down, as neither of us had ever been there. We made sure to check out Boothill Graveyard~

and tooled around town after that. Supposedly, Wyatt Earp lived in this house~

The Tombstone courthouse was quite interesting~

I really liked these lights~

We took in the sights on main street~
Bird Cage
Big Nose Kates

We then headed to Bisbee, and arrived just in time to take the last Queen Mine tour of day~
Queen Mine

I really rocked the safety gear, as you can see. The tour guide liked our attire and gave us vintage helmets to match.

After the tour, we checked into our trailer, which was too wonderful for words. It had a small living room~
Living Room

Decked out with vintage pieces galore. Seriously, check out this TV!

and an adorable kitchenette~
Complete with the original fridge~
I couldn't resist taking a photo of the Venus de Milo salt and pepper shakers. Take a wild guess as to where the salt and pepper comes out.

And a cute little bedroom~

Our trailer had a bathroom as well, though the showers are located in a seperate building.

After we oohed and ahhed for awhile, we headed into town for dinner and to see some sights. Bisbee reminded us of San Francisco; it is built into the hillside and there are plenty of old homes and buildings to admire.

We ate dinner at a restaurant inside this deco building

Many of the shops had quaint and interesting signage~
Bombs Away

This blue door made for a brilliantly colored backdrop~
Blue Door
For the trip down, I wore a vintage embroidered peasant blouse, 1950s cuffed jeans, a 50s red tooled leather belt, red Remix wedges and lucite reverse carved peach rose earrings.

I call this one "Looking for trouble".
He's Bad

I was way too impressed with this giant century plant~
Century Plant

We had breakfast the next morning at Dot's Diner. This dining car was built in the 1950s by the Valentine company, and lived at the corner of Ventura and Topanga Canyon Blvd in Los Angeles until 1996.

And then it was time to say goodbye to The Shady Dell.
Royal Mansion

We checked out a few antique stores before heading to Tucson. While there, we met up with a sweet friend of mine, Syd, and her husband for an early dinner. They took us around to a few vintage shops (I snagged a gorgeous embroidered 1940s-50s skirt and a pair of sunglasses thanks to her help) and then gave us a tour of their lovely 1942 home that they are in the process of restoring. It was lots of fun hanging out them and we hope to see them again soon!

As you can see, we had a whirlwind vacation! We’re already talking about when we can visit again ;-)


  1. So glad you guys had a swell time! You captured some great photos. Can't wait for another vist. It was so much fun!!

    Take Care Darling,


  2. What a cute road trip! I've always wanted to go to the Shady Dell!

  3. what a swell trip!

  4. Your kind of place! I have never been to that part of Arizona, but it has long been on the short list of places I want to visit sometime -- with my camera, tripod, and some good lenses in hand, of course.

  5. Stylish as ever, even with your choice of vaction, again am green with envy xx

  6. Your hairstyles look fab! What a great place! so Full of character. Its so nice to visit places which are not full of the commercial fittings of todays society e.g: Large commercial malls that look the same in every town.

  7. Thank you for the comments! This mini-vacation was fabulously retro--I highly recommend The Shady Dell/Bisbee to anyone looking for a fun and vintage place to travel to :-)

  8. what a wonderful place... we just don't have anything like this (i know of) here in australia

    great photos too... & congrats on the new blog lovely lady xxana

  9. unbelievably fab pics...and your outfits in each are to die for.


  10. Thanks, ladies! This was the most fun we've had on a vacation in ages--we'd love to go back!

  11. Me and my man have plans to stay at Shady Dell on our Honeymoon.
    Looks like you had a swell time. :)