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The “Rain Man” Convenience Store

Mar 7th, 2012 | By | Category: Movie Locations

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Back in February, while doing research on the Hollywood Hills apartment building where Charlie Babbitt (Tom Cruise) lived in 1988’s Rain Man, I came across a September 2004 article on the Palm Springs Life website titled “Quiet on the Set” about filming in the Coachella Valley.  And, let me tell you, I just about fell out of my chair when I read the (rather poorly written) words, “The wind energy farms on Interstate 10 are another popular attraction.  Tom Cruise and Valeria Golino drove past the Palm Springs windmills in the opening minutes of Rain Man.  Cruise exits from a convenience store at Windy Point on Highway 111 and puts sun block on the nose of his autistic brother, Dustin Hoffman.”  Prior to reading the article, I had no idea whatsoever that any Rain Man filming had taken place in the area.  So I, of course, immediately started searching through aerial views of Windy Point trying to locate the convenience store and, amazingly enough, it was not long before I found it!  Yay!  So I dragged the Grim Cheaper right on out there to stalk the place two weekends ago while on our way to visit my parents in the Desert.

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In Rain Man, Charlie and his brother, Raymond Babbitt (Dustin Hoffman), stop at the convenience store towards the end of their long cross-country road trip.  It is there that Charlie puts sunscreen on Raymond’s nose causing Raymond to say that his face feels “very slippery”.  LOL

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Remarkably, the convenience store still looks very much the same today as it did when the movie was filmed way back in 1988.

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I absolutely LOVE that the two poles which appeared in the background of the Rain Man scene are still there in real life, almost two and a half decades later!  SO INCREDIBLY COOL!

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While we were stalking the place, the GC and I ventured inside to see if any of the employees happened to know about the filming and, amazingly enough, the woman behind the counter did!  She informed us that the signs that were posted on the store back in 1988 when Rain Man was filmed were still there until just recently, when the property’s new owner had them replaced with the “Food Shop” sign pictured above.  Oh, why, oh why did I not know about this location sooner?  Ugh!

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On a Rain Man side-note – I am itching to track down the laundromat where Charlie made a phone call to his business partner, Lenny (Ralph Seymour), and learned that the four Lamborghinis he was trying to sell had all been repossessed.  The GC has a hunch that it is located in Nevada, somewhere near Red Rock Canyon, and I think he might be right.  I have not had time to do any research on it, though, but thought I would put it out there to my fellow stalkers.  Does the location look familiar to anyone?

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And on a Palm Springs side-note – while in the Desert last week, fellow stalker Kim informed me that a celebrity golf tournament was going to be taking place on Sunday, March 4th.  So, much to the GC’s chagrin, I, of course, just had to stalk it.  I ended up having an AMAZING time and really cannot thank Kim enough!  The stars (all of whom were incredibly nice) that I met while there were scratch golfer Oliver Hudson (Kate Hudson’s brother and Goldie Hawn’s son), from Dawson’s Creek and Rules of Engagement;

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Sam Page, from Shark (such a cutie!);

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Patrick Warburton, aka “David Puddy” from Seinfeld;

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Rob Morrow, from Numb3rs and Northern Exposure (SO amazingly nice – LOVE HIM!);

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Richard Karn, aka “Al Borland” from Home Improvement;

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Mike Inez, from Alice in Chains;

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Christopher McDonald, aka “Shooter McGavin” from Happy Gilmore (it was so incredibly cool to see “Shooter” play golf in person!);

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guitarist/songwriter/music producer Steve “The Colonel” Cropper (he was also a member of The Blue Brothers band in both the 1980 and 2000 movies of the same name);

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Cheech Marin;

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and Alice Cooper.  Such a fabulous day!  Thank you, Kim!  Smile

You can check out a great article about several Midwest Rain Man filming locations that I stumbled upon yesterday while doing research for this post on the Road Trip Memories blog here.

Until next time, Happy Stalking!  Smile

Stalk It: The convenience store from Rain Man is located at 60490 Overture Drive, about two miles south of where State Route 111 meets the Interstate 10 Freeway, in Palm Springs.

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4 comments

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  1. John (Bay Area) says:

    The Grim Cheaper is absolutely correct. The laundromat scene was filmed around Red Rock Canyon near Las Vegas. If you position yourself on Hwy 159 and use Google Street View, you can spot the exact mountain profile and stripes that you see in the background on your screen shots. To get the exact angle on those mountains, you need to be near the town of Blue Diamond and looking northwest. My best guess for the exact spot is Arroyo Road because there is one spot where you can see the mountains behind the Laundromat and 180 degrees around you see the other hillside behind TC when is standing near the fence. The only problem is I don’t see either of the two buildings or that fence. After all this, I found a 3/26/89 blub in the LA Times that states that Blue Diamond is where the laundromat scene was shot.

    • Lindsay says:

      You rock, John! Will do some research to try to track down the exact location. :) THANK YOU!!!!

    • Megan says:

      I know these comments were posted years ago, but I know the exact location of this shoot. I work in Blue Diamond, Nevada on the exact location where this was shot. The buildings do not exist; they were sets. The location is now a private road in a residential area. My boss has a home across the street and was moving in right around the time of filming, but at the time, there were no other homes on location. There is currently construction underway for two new homes where the laundromat building was located. Because the road is private, you cannot view it directly through google street view, but you can view the surrounding area.

  2. Lavonna says:

    Love Oliver Hudson and Puddy..they are both on Rules of Engagement! Good post!


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