Wanderlust must be in my DNA. There are times when my innate desire to travel and explore wells up like hot lava that’s about to burst from a volcano, and I have no choice but to hit the road. Traveling via airplane fills the need, too, but there’s something about being on the open road that feels the most liberating—plus, I can pack as many pairs of shoes and hats as I want without paying extra baggage fees.
Blogger Elaine Masters wanted a classic Palm Springs vacation, and that’s exactly what she had, soaking in the city’s sights and visiting some of the most popular hotels, from the Spanish-style Los Arboles to the Art Deco-inspired Westcott.
With only 13 rooms, La Maison is where you go when you want to experience utter tranquility in a secluded spot. Blogger Deirdre Michalski discovered during a recent stay that this beautiful property is one of Palm Springs’ hidden gems, with flowers and fountains everywhere you turn.
For years, the Coyote Inn was where Chris and Barb Miller would go when they needed an escape. Now, it’s home.
The Millers have owned the Coyote Inn since 2008. They fell in love with it as guests, when they would leave their donut business in Utah for a few days of relaxation in Palm Springs. It was “a grind,” Chris says, and when the opportunity to purchase the Coyote Inn came up, they jumped. “The previous owners were looking for a different lifestyle, and we were looking for something different,” Chris says.
Chris and Barb live on the property, and work seven days a week. They do everything and anything that needs to be done, and always have their “game faces on,” Chris says. They love forging relationships with guests, greeting new faces and welcoming back regulars.
“We meet a lot of interesting people,” Chris says. “When people find us, they’re hooked.”
Guests come from all over the world, and enjoy the peace and tranquility that comes along with a property that is adults only. They also love the saltwater pool and hot tub, which is good for the skin. Snowbirds flock to the Coyote Inn during the spring, and book for the next year before their visit is even over.
“People come here to relax,” Chris says. “Our location is ideal; you can walk downtown, but you’re far enough away where you can’t hear it. Some guests don’t even rent a car.”
There’s something about walking through the gate and entering the Coyote Inn’s courtyard that instantly puts guests at ease.
“Once people hit the fountain, they forget about everything,” Chris says. “It’s a great place to unwind.”
Author: Andrew Schaeffer
I’m not an outdoorsy guy. I’m in my element when I’m lounging on the couch binging something on Netflix. But, I needed to change that habit and get out and get moving—and what better way to do so than by going somewhere with plenty of outdoor activities?
Staying at Arrive Palm Springs was everything blogger Mary Farah hoped it would be — her room was spacious, the pool was just steps away, and she was able to kick back and relax in the desert heat.
George Cebra brought his love of Japan to Palm Springs.
Sakura, the Japanese-style bed and breakfast, offers a unique experience. At Sakura — which means “cherry blossom” in Japanese — guests can wear kimonos and slippers, and sliding shoji doors lead to the garden and swimming pool. Shiatsu acupressure massage is available.
George is a jazz musician, and has performed in clubs around the United States and world. He spent five years playing in Tokyo, and “planned on living there forever,” he said. “There’s no crime, you can leave your purse or wallet on a train with $1,000 in it and no one would touch it. The food is incredible. You can eat off the sidewalk, everything is immaculate.”
Things changed when he met his wife, whose dream was to live in California. George thought they would only live in the state for a few years, but they stayed, and 20 years ago, as their daughter prepared to go to college, George and his wife opened the bed and breakfast.
“My wife taught me how to make Japanese food,” George said. “People seem to like what I do.”
George’s wife has since passed away, and George runs Sakura on his own. It has just two rooms, and he spends much of his day maintaining the property and getting to know his guests, including many who are first-generation Americans with parents born and raised in Japan. He also sees a lot of people from western Europe and those who “enjoy the Japanese culture.”
“I enjoy hanging out with people during breakfast, we can sit down and talk,” George said. “About 50 percent of guests are from other countries, so it’s nice talking with them about where they are from.”
When George isn’t at Sakura, he is teaching music — everything from violin to the cello to the trumpet — and playing at clubs and with a local orchestra. While George would love to have the chance to go back to Japan and play in the clubs, “If I won $1 million tomorrow, I wouldn’t change anything,” he said.
At the Avanti Hotel, the guest experience is of utmost importance. Owner Jim Rutledge ensures that he knows where visitors are traveling from and what they enjoy doing, in order to offer recommendations and keep the hotel safe and secure.
Owner Jim Rutledge loves dogs, and goes out of his way to make their stay comfortable — at check in, they receive a bag with a pool towel, sheet for the bed, water bowl, and snacks.
“We very much enjoy having them,” Jim said, adding that hundreds of dogs have stayed at the hotel since its opening. These special guests can be spotted on the Instagram page Dogs of Avanti.
Of course, their owners are also treated well at the Avanti, a 10-room mid-century modern hotel that was built in 1954. There are no resort fees, and guests can take complimentary cruisers for a spin and relax at happy hour and an extended continental breakfast. Because it’s such an intimate hotel, Jim gets to know all of his guests, and he estimates that nearly 50 percent of his patrons are repeats.
“We like to get to know our guests, and where they’re from and what they like to do,” he said. “We get to meet people from all around the world who come here.”
Jim and his brother-in-law purchased the property in the early 2010s, after both took buy outs from their corporate jobs. They started from scratch, even coming up with a new name, and Jim, originally from Seattle, was excited to be in a town he was already familiar with.
“I’ve loved Palm Springs and had been coming here for years,” he said.
For guests who enjoy meeting new people, the pool is a natural gathering place, but there are also hideaways for those who want to have some solo time.
“The rooms have private patios, and you can hang out there and read a book,” Jim said.
One of the Avanti’s biggest draws is its security. There is a locked gate, and Jim has a video doorbell, so he can see who is coming and going and he doesn’t have to let people in who don’t belong.
“I know who is in my hotel,” he said. “We have repeat guests, and single women, who know about the safety factor and they love it. They know that when they come in, the door is locked behind them and no one can come in. I know all of the guests, and people who stay here for two or more nights get to know the other guests, and they all recognize each other.”
We always love it when travel writers visit Palm Springs and stay in one of our uniquely beautiful, independently-owned Palm Springs boutique hotels. But it is particularly heartening when a writer like Joanna visits us and is completely captivated by the charm of her hotel and Palm Springs. Joanna recently stayed at the Alcazar and here’s what she had to say about her trip.