Manufacturer: Shenango China
User: Desert Inn
Date of plate: 1963
Notes: (Source: Wikipedia) The Desert Inn in Las Vegas – originally called Wilbur Clark's Desert Inn – was in operation from 1950 to 2000. When Clark ran out of money during the construction, Moe Dalitz, connected with the Cleveland mob, became the D.I.'s (as it was called) mostly silent owner.
Billionaire Howard Hughes bought the hotel/casino in 1967. Following his ownership, it was owned briefly by MGM Grand Inc. and Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide owned it until 1998 and spent $200 million on a renovation/expansion in 1997.
Ownership then went to Steven Wynn who planned a "megaresort." Ultimately, by 2004 the complex had been demolished, in stages.
Every major performing star played the Desert Inn, and many movies were filmed there, too.
Bright pink plate with stylized Joshua Tree in green, blue stars and D I in red stripes.
From Steve Koska comes this story about the desert plants featured on the two versions of Desert Inn china, one like this with a Joshua Tree, and the other, as in the link below, with a Saguaro Cactus. "An unverified story goes that the Saguaro Cactus version was original first issue for the establishment. However, because the Saguaro Cactus is not native to Nevada but rather to Arizona, the resort suffered negative feedback. The error was irritatingly obvious to locals and adding insult to injury seemed to promote Arizona. Resort management thought enough of the criticism to order new china featuring the Joshua Tree, a desert plant native to the Mojave Desert which lies partly in Nevada. The Saguaro Cactus pattern china was sent to the dump, is justifiably hard to find and sought after by collectors. We have not been able to verify this story. However, there is a news article from Friday, February 4, 1966, which mentions a strangely similar controversy while debating the new design for the Seal of the City of Las Vegas, 'Someone unkindly pointed out there are no saguaro cacti in Nevada.' "
For related info:
Desert Inn 2 by Sterling China