Marfa’s Hotel Paisano famously housed the stars of “Giant” during filming in 1955, and you can, if you like, throw rooftop terrace parties in the Rock Hudson Suite; the Elizabeth Taylor Suite has a kitchen and sitting room. Up-and-coming actor James Dean got a single room with its own bath, not a given in hotels of the day. Most of the hotel has been redone – Dean’s room is clean-lined, simple, with a pretty iron desk – but the 1920s bathroom fixtures are unchanged since the Paisano opened.
So, before we headed out to a fancy restaurant that night, I got to hop into James Dean’s shower. The vicarious movie-star feeling, though, really set in while I was getting ready to go out: If you want to feel like Elizabeth Taylor, then swanning around James Dean’s hotel room in a full slip while you put on your eye makeup will do the trick. You feel like he’s about to come back in with ice for the drinks.
Pics are mine except for Dean outside West Texas Ice by Richard Miller.