PHOTOGRAPHS BY NATE ABBOTT
In downtown Palm Springs, it’s impossible to miss the Rowan. For starters, at seven stories, it’s the tallest building in town, offering eye-popping views of the San Jacinto Mountains from a variety of well-appointed perches: an iconic rooftop pool deck with the popular High Bar, the adjacent 4 Saints restaurant with its own banquette-lined outdoor veranda, or plush rooms with floor-to-ceiling windows and balconies.
In those guest rooms, which have been delightfully accented in various shades of blue and white, attention has been paid to every detail. The marble nightstands have inset USB ports. The televisions are equipped with screen casting gear. The bathrooms are stocked with Atelier Bloem products. The artwork, like topography maps positioned above tiled headboards and law-breaking camel sculptures hidden in closets, lovingly nod to Palm Springs’ past.
There’s plenty to cherish on the ground, too. Besides the hotel’s more casual eatery Juniper Table and intimate Window Bar in the lobby, the Rowan anchors a built-from-scratch development that’s modernized, perhaps controversially, downtown Palm Springs with instantly recognizable retail outlets and a coffee shop whose name rhymes with Barstucks. It’s all steps away from the Palm Springs Art Museum, a forthcoming park, and other more established spots along Palm Canyon Drive.
During the pandemic, the Rowan smartly shifted when its signature 4 Saints restaurant was forced to close indoor dining. Rowan executive chef Dan Grunbeck and his team transformed the pool deck into a fine dining venue, swapping chaise lounges for cloth-covered tables and offering a seasonal pre-fixe menu inspired by local ingredients each night. It was a hit and quickly became a tough reservation to secure.
Since the Rowan debuted more than three years ago, the property has continually elevated the hospitality industry in the Coachella Valley. You don’t have to look far to understand why Palm Springs Life readers picked the Rowan as the city’s best hotel. You just have to look up. rowanpalmsprings.com — D.J.L.
Winners Voted by Our Readers
Sands Hotel & Spa
If the Kardashians opened a boutique hotel in the Coachella Valley, it’d probably look something like this unapologetically chic 46-room property designed by Martyn Lawrence Bullard. The exterior walls are slathered in millennial pink, and the interior spaces are accented with an eclectic mix of Moroccan and mid-mod touches. From the charming pool area to the stylish Pink Cabana eatery, every nook and cranny is a prime spot to pose for an envy-inducing pic on Instagram. sandshotelandspa.com
PHOTOGRAPH BY DANIELLA STALLINGER
A shopaholic’s dream, Hotel Paseo is a mere 50 steps — add a few if you’re wearing heels — to the fabulous boutiques, galleries, and restaurants lining the El Paseo Shopping District. The pool zone is totally cool: A vintage Airstream trailer is parked next to a lawn perfect for an outdoor yoga session or a game of cornhole. Several of the ethereal rooms boast balconies pointed at the mountains, and they all feel like an extension of the on-site Spa La Lé, which offers a splurge-worthy 24K gold facial.