The Golden Palace

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The Golden Palace
Created by Susan Harris
Starring Betty White
Rue McClanahan
Estelle Getty
Don Cheadle
Cheech Marin
Billy L. Sullivan
Theme music composer Andrew Gold
Opening theme "Thank You for Being a Friend"
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 24
Running time 22–24 minutes
Production company(s) Witt/Thomas/Harris Productions
Touchstone Television
Distributor Disney–ABC Domestic Television
Original network CBS
Original release September 18, 1992 (1992-09-18) – May 14, 1993 (1993-05-14)
Preceded by The Golden Girls
Followed by The Golden Girls: Their Greatest Moments

The Golden Palace is an American sitcom that originally aired on CBS from September 18, 1992, to May 14, 1993. The show is a spin-off of the sitcom The Golden Girls, continuing the story from that series. CBS cancelled the spin-off in 1993 after one season.[1]


The Golden Palace begins where The Golden Girls had ended, in the quartet's now-sold Miami house. With Dorothy Zbornak having married and left in the previous series finale, the three remaining cast members (Dorothy's mother, Sophia Petrillo, Rose Nylund and Blanche Devereaux) decide to invest in a Miami hotel that is up for sale. The hotel, however, is revealed to have been stripped of all of its personnel in an effort to appear more profitable, leaving only two employees: Roland Wilson, the hotel's manager, and Chuy Castillos, the hotel's chef. This requires the women to perform all the tasks of the hotel's staff.

The series focused on the interactions between guests at the hotel and the hotel's staff, as well as between the Golden Girls and the previous hotel staff. Guest stars were frequent, including recurring characters that had previously appeared on The Golden Girls, such as Debra Engle and Harold Gould as Rebecca Devereaux and Miles Webber, and other celebrities (Bea Arthur reprised the Dorothy Zbornak role for a two-part storyline in which she visits the hotel to check up on her mother).

Following the cancellation of the series, Sophia moves into the Shady Pines retirement home, appearing as a cast member in the later seasons of Empty Nest. What became of Rose, Blanche and the hotel is left unresolved.

Broadcast history and reception[edit]

The Golden Palace aired on CBS, changing networks from NBC, which had aired The Golden Girls on Saturday nights for its entire run. Susan Harris, Paul Junger Witt and Tony Thomas all pitched their Golden Girls successor series to NBC in early 1992, as a way to continue the saga of Blanche, Rose and Sophia after Bea Arthur's departure from the role of Dorothy. NBC entertainment chief Warren Littlefield originally committed to airing The Golden Palace, with a 13-episode order for the 1992-93 season. However, CBS soon entered the picture and fueled a bidding war for the new series, offering a full season (24 episode) order. Witt, Thomas and Harris tried to get Littlefield to improve his NBC deal, but he refused to extend his episode order, citing that the declining ratings of The Golden Girls in its seventh season made it risky to give the spin-off a longer commitment. The producers thus went with CBS, who agreed to market The Golden Palace as a show with its own voice separate from that of its parent show.

CBS used The Golden Palace as one of four comedies assembled on Friday night in an effort to combat ABC's TGIF comedy block; The Golden Palace was grouped with Major Dad, Designing Women and Bob, all of which were either successful comedies prior to the move or, in the case of Bob, featured a previously successful sitcom star (Bob Newhart).[2] The premiere garnered solid ratings, and the show won its timeslot for its first few weeks, but viewership fell steadily for the entire block as the season progressed. CBS had scheduled the show for a second season, but canceled the show (and the entire block) the night before they announced their 1993 fall schedule. The only one of the four aforementioned shows to get picked up for the 1993-94 season was Bob, which hired Betty White to join its revamped cast.

Twenty-four episodes of the series were produced.[3] In some versions of Disney-ABC Domestic Television's syndicated packaging of the series, The Golden Palace has aired as part of The Golden Girls syndication library.


Season Rank
1) 1992–93 #57 [4]


  • Betty White as Rose Nylund, a jack-of-all-trades in the hotel. This series sees Rose being of a notably stronger will than her previous incarnation (as Dorothy Zbornak noted in her guest appearance, "When did she become the strong one?").
  • Rue McClanahan as Blanche Devereaux, who served as the main operator of the hotel. Her character traits, particularly her promiscuity and vanity, are significantly toned down in this series, although she retains her Southern charm and generally chipper demeanor.
  • Estelle Getty as Sophia Petrillo Weinstock, the hotel's 87-year-old co-chef. In this series, her character is beginning to show signs of senile dementia, and is somewhat kinder and gentler than in the original series.
  • Don Cheadle as Roland Wilson, the hotel's manager. He is one of only two staff members retained by the previous ownership. Roland has a notably serious, all-business demeanor and has the least comedic role of any of the characters in the show.
  • Cheech Marin as Chuy Castillos, the other co-chef and the other staff member held on by the previous ownership. He nearly quits after getting into a fight with Sophia over Italian vs. Mexican food, but comes back and remains with the staff for the rest of the series run.[5]
  • Billy L. Sullivan as Oliver Webb, Roland's foster child for episodes 1-6, 11, and 14. A streetwise, arrogant preteen, Oliver was written out of the series fairly early on, with the character's birth mother retaking custody of him in episode 14.


No. in
Title Directed by Written by Original air date
1 "The Golden Palace" Terry Hughes Susan Harris September 18, 1992
Pilot episode: Rose, Blanche and Sophia move out of their home and into The Golden Palace hotel where they meet the manager named Roland, his foster child Oliver, and the chef, named Chuy.
2 "Promotional Considerations" Lex Passaris Jim Vallely September 25, 1992

Rose makes a deal with producers of a talk show to have guests on the show stay at the Golden Palace for free, in exchange for an ad acknowledging the hotel... until they find out that one of their newest guests is a killer.

Guest-starring Bobcat Goldthwait.
3 "Miles, We Hardly Knew Ye" Peter D. Beyt Marc Cherry,
Jamie Wooten
October 2, 1992
When Blanche finds Rose's boyfriend, Miles' (Harold Gould) name in the hotel guest list, she suspects he has been cheating on her and she plans to tell Rose. However, her plan backfires when Roland tells her that the Miles Webber who comes to the hotel is a different man, which causes tensions between Rose and Blanche. As Rose prepares to put her relationship with Miles back on track, Miles reveals a devastating secret.
4 "One Old Lady to Go" Lex Passaris Jim Vallely October 9, 1992

Rose makes friends with an old woman (Anne Haney) at the hotel.

Margaret Cho makes an early television appearance.
5 "Ebbtide for the Defense" Peter D. Beyt Marc Sotkin October 16, 1992
Just as Rose has overbooked the hotel with guests — the majority of whom are lawyers visiting the city for a convention — Blanche and Roland find that the hotel's insurance has been canceled.
6 "Can't Stand Losing You" Peter D. Beyt Mitchell Hurwitz October 23, 1992
The girls compete to help Roland find a date, and Blanche brings in an old girlfriend (Kim Fields).
7 "Seems Like Old Times (Part 1)" Lex Passaris Marc Cherry,
Jamie Wooten
October 30, 1992

Dorothy reunites with her old friends at the hotel, and is shocked at how hard her mother Sophia is working.

Bea Arthur returns as Dorothy Zbornak-Hollingsworth for this two-parter.
8 "Seems Like Old Times (Part 2)" Lex Passaris Jim Vallely November 6, 1992

Dorothy, Blanche and Rose search for Sophia, who has gone missing.

Features the final appearance of Bea Arthur as Dorothy. Jack Black has a small role. This also marks the only scene to take place at Shady Pines, the nursing home frequently mentioned throughout original series.
9 "Just a Gigolo" Lex Passaris Tony DeLia November 13, 1992
Blanche is escorted to a dance by a gigolo named Nick (Barry Bostwick).
10 "Marriage on the Rocks, with a Twist" Peter D. Beyt Marc Cherry,
Jamie Wooten
November 20, 1992

Roland's parents visit the hotel with the announcement that they're getting a divorce.

Tim Conway and Harvey Korman guest-star as radio DJs.
11 "Camp Town Races Aren't Nearly as Much Fun as They Used to Be" Lex Passaris Marc Sotkin December 4, 1992
Blanche and Roland have a disagreement over a Confederate flag hung on the front desk. Also Rose is against guests coming into the hotel to only have sex.
12 "It's Beginning to Look a Lot (Less) Like Christmas" Peter D. Beyt Jonathan Schmock December 18, 1992
Chuy has a Christmas Carol-esque nightmare about Rose, Blanche, and Sophia.
13 "Rose and Fern" Peter D. Beyt Marc Sotkin January 8, 1993

Rose's ex, Miles, keeps calling the hotel, leading Rose to believe he wants to get back together with her.

Harold Gould makes his last appearance as Miles.
14 "Runaways" Lex Passaris Mitchell Hurwitz January 15, 1993
Oliver's mother (Joely Fisher) has arrived to take her son home. However, Oliver and Sophia have run away in a stolen car.
15 "Heartbreak Hotel" Lex Passaris Julie Thacker January 29, 1993

Blanche tries to win over the man who snubbed her in college, who ends up falling for Rose.

Guest-starring Dick van Patten.
16 "Señor Stinky Learns Absolutely Nothing About Life" Peter D. Beyt Marc Sotkin February 5, 1993
Roland, Rose, and Brad the pool man form a volleyball team, and constantly leave Chuy out.
17 "Say Goodbye, Rose" Peter D. Beyt Jim Vallely February 12, 1993

Rose's new boyfriend, Bill (Eddie Albert), bears a striking resemblance to her late husband, Charlie. Meanwhile, the hotel holds a comedy competition.

George Burns guest-stars.[6] Bill Engvall plays Blanche's son Matthew.
18 "You've Lost That Livin' Feeling" Peter D. Beyt Marco Pennette February 19, 1993
Rose invites a restaurant critic (Eric Christmas) to review the hotel restaurant's food. There, the critic drops dead, and the staff fear that Chuy — whom the critic once gave a bad review — may have poisoned him.
19 "A New Leash on Life" Lex Passaris Marco Pennette April 2, 1993
Blanche's new love interest plans to put his racing greyhound to sleep if it doesn't win its next race. This does not sit well with Rose. Roland fears that Chuy is dating his mother and tries to put a stop to it.
20 "Pro and Concierge" Lex Passaris Kevin Rooney April 9, 1993
Blanche fires Roland after he is caught in a job interview with the rep of another hotel chain. Blanche and Rose suggest that Sophia should go on a she stays at the hotel.
21 "Tad" Peter D. Beyt Marc Cherry,
Jamie Wooten
April 16, 1993
Blanche's mentally disabled brother Tad (Ned Beatty) visits the hotel, and falls for Rose.
22 "One Angry Stan" Lex Passaris Michael Davidoff,
Bill Rosenthal
April 30, 1993

Stanley Zbornak, Dorothy's ex-husband, finds himself in trouble with the IRS and fakes his own death.

Last appearance of Stan Zbornak by Herbert Edelman.
23 "Sex, Lies and Tortillas" Lex Passaris Michael Davidoff,
Bill Rosenthal
May 7, 1993
Spring break at the Golden Palace: Roland discovers a college kid who has been sneaking friends into his room, Chuy tries to get into the Guinness Book of World Records, and Rose's granddaughter (Brooke Theiss) checks into the hotel with plans of sleeping with her boyfriend.
24 "The Chicken and the Egg" Lex Passaris Mitchell Hurwitz May 14, 1993

Blanche calls upon her daughter Rebecca for an egg cell after agreeing to have her beau's children, then has a dream that she, Rose, Sophia, Roland and Chuy are pregnant.

Debra Engle makes her last appearance as Rebecca Devereaux in this episode.


External links[edit]