It all began in the early 1920's when Manuel Barbachano chased his dream. It was first opened to the public as a hotel in 1925. In 1932, the grand hotel foyer was constructed, as well as 50 additional rooms, the Salon Mexicano Ballroom and the Azteca restaurant. Senior Barbachano married the talented and beautiful Maria Louisa Chabert and set about building a mansion on the ocean that was worthy of his wife and family. That elegant mansion now forms the hotel's Casa Playa Spa and Chabert's restaurant.
The beauty of the hotel, its Mexican ambiance, impeccable service, exquisite food and drinks attracted Hollywood stars and filmmakers making the Rosarito Beach Hotel the place to be for the rich and famous.
Guests included Orson Wells, Edward G. Robinson, Robert Stack, Gregory Peck, Vincent Price, Robert Preston, Spencer Tracy, and Anthony Quinn. One guest, Ali Khan, son of the Shah of Iran, visited the hotel in 1954 accompanied by sultry movie star Rita Hayworth.
The Rosarito Beach Hotel was visited by Marilyn Monroe, Lana Turner, Joan Bennett and Kim Novak. A sign above the lobby entrance states: "Through this door pass the most beautiful women in the world."