The wait is over. On April 4, the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians unveiled The Spa at Séc-he, the 5-star spa we all have been waiting for in anticipation. The security walls that kept us intrigued for so long are now removed, revealing an enchanting place where one can relax and rejuvenate in downtown Palm Springs.
If you are staying in one of the Palm Springs Preferred Hotels, the good news is that the spa is within walking distance of many properties. You will want to make sure to make reservations — word is quickly spreading about how fabulous this place is, for so many reasons.
I want to give you an up-close-and-personal view, as I was honored to be invited to the grand opening and spend a day at this stunning spa. Would you believe seven hours felt like it wasn’t enough?
The hot mineral springs
The Agua Caliente have been keepers and protectors of Palm Springs’ only hot mineral springs since the late 1880s. With a temperature of 105 degrees, the mineral-rich hot water arrives from 8,000 feet below the surface, and is known for easing joint and muscle aches and even skin conditions. In the language of the Cahuilla Indians, “séc-he” means the sound of boiling water, thus Séc-he was coined for this new Palm Springs spa.
The Spa at Séc-he has 22 separate hot mineral tubs, and you can bathe alone in your own room for 15 minutes. After each person leaves, the tub is emptied and refilled with the healing waters.
Pro tip: Leave your jewelry at home because the water’s minerals will tarnish it.
General Manager Daniel Spencer has searched the world, asked lots of questions, and now has ensured that Séc-he’s staff is trained on all eight kinds of massages offered at the spa. That means services like the Quartz and Poultice Massage may result in you wandering out into the Tranquility Garden feeling relaxed and totally at peace with the world.
I had the Restoring Energy Massage, which includes essences of sandalwood, peppermint, and vetiver for releasing anxiety and assisting with the immune system. I can’t say if I enjoyed the reflexology or the re-energizing balance more, which are both part of this particular massage. In any case, it was heavenly.
Body scrubs and wraps
There are way too many to mention, but with each treatment, you lie on a quartz bed treatment table that is heated and takes your mind to your favorite warm tropical beach. Afterward, you can use the eucalyptus steam room and menthol sauna, then follow it up with an aromatherapy shower. In fact, the entire spa smells wonderful. All the ingredients used in the treatments are local indigenous herbs rich in minerals and botanical oil extract.
Lounge areas are everywhere
Frankly, I have never seen so many lounge areas. Some are coed so that you can enjoy your partner’s company, and outside there are cabanas and day beds, which you can rent, and umbrellas to protect you from the intense desert sun.
The freshwater pool is enormous, complete with a waterfall. There are chairs submerged at one end of the pool, so you are surrounded by water and can hear the calming sound of the waterfall in the distance. In the same area, off to your left, there is a zero-edge pool with mineral water, where you can “take in the waters,” as the Cahuilla Indians would say.
Day Pass amenities
The Day Pass is $145, but if you have a treatment over $200 booked, you do not have to pay that fee. Here’s what the Day Pass includes:
- Dressing rooms with secure lockers
- Robes and slippers (be sure to bring your swimming suit)
- 15 minutes in the mineral springs tub (you won’t feel rushed)
- Access to the outside pools, both fresh and mineral water
- Access to a state-of-the-art fitness room
- Grounding room
- Tranquility room
- Two salt rooms
- Eucalyptus steam room
- Menthol sauna
- Aromatherapy showers
- Cold-rinse experience
- Lounge areas
- Quiet room
I was there for seven hours and realized I still had some amenities to explore. This truly is a place where you slow down and can have several different relaxing experiences.
Other services with additional fees
The massages, body scrubs, and wraps have different prices, and Séc-he also offers several additional services for a fee:
- Facials (at the moment, there are nine different kinds)
- Organic skin care treatments
- Nail care
- Hair salon
When you read this, I wouldn’t be surprised if more treatments are added, for this experiential spa never stops stretching its capabilities — be sure to check their website.
Pro tip: The spa is 18 and over. The nail and hair care salons are available to children and young adults.
Food service at two restaurants
The Malmal Café is open to the public. You can stop in and get flavorful Mediterranean-inspired cold items. The salads are delicious, and pick your favorite beverage to go with them. I suggest you try one of their juices or smoothies. The Monkey Berry smoothie made with banana, strawberries, vanilla bean, low-fat yogurt, milk, and latte powder passed and made it to my terrific taste list. I am also still thinking about my great panini, made with grilled chicken and avocado. Sooooo good!
If you have a treatment or buy the Day Pass, you can access the poolside Pal Bar. Your food and drinks will be delivered to wherever you are sitting in the pool area.
Five stars all around
As if you need to hear it from me, but I wanted to stress to the readers that Séc-he is not only beautiful, its customer service and amenities would be hard to find or beat any place in the world. I give it five stars.
Please do yourself a favor after you make a reservation at one of our Palm Springs Preferred Hotels: Go to the Séc-he website and book a service or two so you can be one of the first visitors to check out this extraordinary addition to downtown Palm Springs.