In 1954, a group of wealthy individuals—including Donald Deskey, designer of Radio City Music Hall; Harvey Firestone, Jr. of The Firestone Tire and Rubber Company; Richard Reynolds of the Reynolds Metal Company and Jamaican bauxite company; oil and real-estate entrepreneur Curtis Steuart and Mrs. Laurence Armour of U.S. meat packaging giant Armour Packing Company—chose to build an exclusive vacation resort on a perfectly shaped crescent beach that they aptly named "Half Moon." That same year, Half Moon Hotel & Cottage Colony officially opened with 17 whitewashed cottages overlooking Half Moon Bay and 30 beachfront homes.
As it does today, the resort attracted many luminaries of the day including Joan Crawford and her husband Alfred Steel (CEO of Pepsi-Cola), Clark Gable and HRH Princess Margaret. Other notable past guests include HRH Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Philip and HRH The Prince of Wales; Prince Rainer of Monaco; former United States President John F. and Jacqueline Kennedy; and George H. W. Bush when he was Vice President.
Over the years, Half Moon has undergone several renovations and additions, including the transformation of its signature villa, Fern Tree, into the award-winning Fern Tree, A RockResorts Spa®. Eleven of the original cottages remain, a tribute to the legacy of the founders, whose descendants remain as resort shareholders.
In early December 2010, RockResorts (a subsidiary of Vail Resorts, Inc.) announced that it was adding Half Moon to its luxury resort collection. On Jan. 1, 2011, RockResorts took over management of all resort operations and Half Moon became part of the RockResorts brand, with the official name of Half Moon, A RockResort.
|Her Royal Highness Princess Margaret visiting Half Moon in 1962.|
|Guests at Half Moon have always known how to have a good time. Here they dance during at pool party at the resort in the 1960's.|
|Guests enjoying New Year's Eve dinner at the Seagrape Terrace in the 1960's.|
|Guests enjoying afternoon tea at the Cedar Bar.|
|His Royal Highness Prince Charles of Wales touring Half Moon during his first visit to the resort in 1966.|
|Former U.S. President George H.W. Bush is welcomed to Half Moon by former Managing Director Heinz Simonitsch in the 1980's.|
|Prince Rainier III of Monaco, Princess Caroline, Princess Stephanie, Prince Albert and their family spend the Christmas holiday in 1990.|