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Where to Stay in Desert Hot Springs

Spas and boutique hotels popped up in the 1950s, enticing tourists with their curative waters then and now.

Emily Chavous Current Guide, Hotels & Resorts

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Two Bunch Palms is the first entirely solar-operated hotrel in the Coachella Valley.
PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY TWO BUNCH PALMS

Two Bunch Palms

67425 Two Bunch Palms Trail
Desert Hot Springs
800-472-4334
twobunchpalms.com

Since its founding in the 1930s, this adults-only retreat changed hands seven times over seven decades and was at one point said to be the secret refuge of Al Capone. In the ’70s, part of the property was designated clothing-optional, luring hippies and a handful of Hollywood’s elite (who still visit for the welcome privacy). That soaking spot has become the stone grotto, where today’s bathers bask beneath the palm fronds between luxurious spa treatments, yoga sessions, and spiritual and meditative workshops.

With the 2015 installation of a 3.5-acre solar field on the property, Two Bunch Palms became the first entirely solar-operated hotel in the Coachella Valley and the first carbon-neutral resort in the United States. In addition, the on-site Essense restaurant focuses on sustainable eating, using local-farm-to-fork produce and whole foods free of hormones and synthetic additives. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and lounge menus include vegan and gluten-free options and a variety of organic teas, cold brew coffee, and specialty tonics and elixirs.

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Bungalows and cabins some with their own private pools, wind through the beautifully landscaped property. The Capone Suite is inspired by the mythical lore surrounding the infamous gangster who stayed here, blending the charm of the Prohibition Era with rich, modern touches in a 1,200-square-foot, two-bedroom space with a statement stone fireplace and private backyard patio. All rooms are stocked with organic linens and natural toiletries, providing a genuine escape to nature where guests can relax and rejuvenate between dips in the world-renowned mineral-rich hot springs.

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The Spring Resort & Spa

12699 Reposo Way
Desert Hot Springs
760-251-6700
the-spring.com

Built in 1957 as the Moors Hotel, the modest Miracle Hill hangout was charmingly rustic, with a partly hand-painted sign and a rectangular pool positioned against a dramatic mountain backdrop. It saw a few celebrity regulars who sought a private escape, but their names were kept under wraps, as they are today. Purchased in 2003 and aptly renamed The Spring, the resort and spa now overtly advertises its main attraction: natural hot springs that flow into three on-site pools, as well as a host of other cleansing spa therapies. The low-key locale accommodates up to 13 guests.

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Vida Cleanse Retreats at The Spring combine organic juices, broths, and teas with yoga, meditation, sound baths, and colonics.

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Miracle Springs
Resort & Spa

10625 Palm Drive
Desert Hot Springs
760-251-6000
miraclesprings.com

Miracle Springs Resort & Spa is nestled in the foothills of Mount San Jacinto, just minutes from Joshua Tree. Eight pools are all fed by the natural hot mineral waters that made the city world-famous. The resort features 110 rooms overlooking the springs or out onto the majestic mountains.
Enjoy access to championship golf. Rejuvenate at the Spa, providing massages and facials. Dine at the landmark restaurant, Capri.

The hotel offers 10,000 square feet of space, including two ballrooms, which are well-suited for filming, weddings, and retreats. Miracle Springs has received TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence, a listing as one of Vogue’s Desert Elite Escapes, and a Palm Springs Life award for Best Italian Restaurant.

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The Lautner Compound

67710 San Antonio St.
Desert Hot Springs
760-832-5288
thelautner.com

A hybrid between upscale rental and boutique hotel, this three-part property started with the renovation of a four-unit prototype pad designed and built in 1947 by modernist architect John Lautner. It was developed as part of a planned housing community — the brainchild of director Lucien Hubbard, whose silent film Wings 
won the first-ever Academy Award for Best Picture. When plans fell apart and Hubbard died, the place was left to crumble.

In 2008, interior designer Tracy Beckmann and furniture designer Ryan Trowbridge purchased the building. The Lautner, as it came to be called, re-opened as it stands today in 2011. Beckmann and Trowbridge expanded with the sprawling renovation of a neighboring 1957 ranch-house bungalow and a conjoining 10,000-square-foot open-air event space that has become quite the commodity. Couples looking to tie the knot book a year in advance.

The draw is quiet luxury and sharp attention to decorative detail, conveying the desert’s coveted midcentury aesthetic in a decidedly contemporary California way

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El Morocco Inn & Spa

66810 Fourth St.
Desert Hot Springs
760-288-2527
elmoroccoinn.com

When Las Vegas–born Bruce Abney purchased a dilapidated 50-year-old building in 2001, he saw past its disrepair and envisioned a lavish boutique hotel focused on healing. After all, the site had its own well and the ability to pump 104-degree water into its Jacuzzi and pools.

Abney transformed the place with a curated collection of artwork and architectural elements found on treks to Morocco and around the globe — goatskin lamps, a pair of antique entry doors, handmade canopy fabrics that cascade from the rafters. He opened the 12-room inn and spa in 2007.

The guest experience includes traditional Moroccan tea and hand-washing ceremonies as well as complimentary “Morocco-tinis” at happy hour. Spa treatments range from dry brushing and salt scrubs to essential-oil massages and reflexology.

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