Homesteader Cabot Yerxa discovered the healing hot mineral waters at the foot of the San Bernardino Mountains in 1913. Almost 100 years later, “California’s Spa City” attracts visitors from far and wide. Naturally heated underground to as much as 180 degrees, the healing waters have resulted in more than two dozen spas and spa hotels, including the celebrity-studded Two Bunch Palms Resort & Spa (1) , Miracle Springs Resort (2) , and El Morocco Inn (3) . Even the tap water is award-winning.
The small-town atmosphere, proximity to Joshua Tree National Park, and stunning elevated views of Palm Springs seal the deal of Desert Hot Springs’ appeal, causing the population to double in the 1980s. The Desert Hot Springs City Council recently adopted a $4 million revitalization plan, and the town’s annual holiday parade marks one of the valley’s pioneering community events.
Tips & Fun Facts
■ Pioneer Cabot Yerxa worked on his residence, now Cabot’s Pueblo Museum , until his death in 1965. Today, daily tours are offered of the hand-crafted home. www.cabotsmuseum.org
■ The San Andreas Fault separates the city (which is on the North American Plate) from other valley cities, which are on the Pacific Plate.
■ The famous Two Bunch Palms Resort & Spa appeared in the 1992 movie The Player.
■ Spas listed on Tripadvisor’s list of top 10 Best Hidden Gems include El Morocco Inn & Spa, Living Waters Spa, and Sagewater Spa.
Cabot’s Pueblo Museum
Whether you live in the Coachella Valley full- or part-time, or just come a-calling now and then, you know this place is more than simply location, location, location. It’s a feeling, a lifestyle, and most definitely a privilege. It’s also one of the “greenest” deserts around, not only because of the profusion of golf courses and verdant botanical gardens, but also for its collective commitment to sustainability evident in exemplary conservation measures, including recycling programs and xeriscaping implemented by cities, resorts, and residents.
What many consider “Palm Springs” is actually a collage of nine quite distinct cities that together fashion a one-of-a-kind resort destination. Included in this potpourri of paradise are Desert Hot Springs, Palm Springs, Cathedral City, Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage, La Quinta, Indio, Indian Wells, and Coachella — municipalities that make life under our beloved sun, blue sky, and majestic palms ever merrier.