The Best Luxury Hotels in Palm Springs, California

The Ritz-Carlton in Rancho Mirage is one of many luxury resorts in Palm Springs
The Ritz-Carlton in Rancho Mirage is one of many luxury resorts in Palm Springs | Courtesy of the Ritz-Carlton, Rancho Mirage / Expedia
Photo of Tim Rowland
4 January 2021

Very few places in the world do luxury like Palm Springs – after all, it has long been the Southern California playground for Hollywood’s rich and famous, a short hop from manic Los Angeles. You’re almost guaranteed al fresco dining in your cabana by the pool, with a view of the San Jacinto Mountains and immaculate gardens filled with native desert blooms and, of course, palm trees. Opt for a chain hotel packed with amenities, or go for a more intimate experience at a boutique hotel.

Amin Casa

Hotel, Luxury
Map View
Courtesy of Amin Casa / Booking.com
In a great spot near downtown and just below the San Jacinto Mountains is Amin Casa. This was once the home of Hollywood star Gloria Swanson, who is said to have hosted Joseph Kennedy, father of President John F Kennedy, with whom Swanson had a notorious affair. You can stay at her original residence, which has two bedrooms and two bathrooms, or at four private bungalows or a pool-studio suite. The tailored gardens are gorgeous and there’s an intimate feel as the whole resort accommodates a maximum of 14 guests (adults only). The pool is heated and there’s an outdoor jacuzzi.

Colony Palms

Boutique Hotel, Spa Hotel
Map View
Colony Palms
Courtesy of Colony Palms Hotel / Expedia
A Palm Springs staple since 1936, set just one block from the Design District, Colony Palms retains many features of its original Spanish Colonial architecture, with arched entryways, covered ceilings and original ceramic floor tiles. The accommodation features Moroccan fabric headboards, Spanish tiles and hardwood floors, and includes rooms, suites and casitas (little chalets dotted throughout the grounds where you get a private patio with a soaking tub or fire pit). There’s a spa too, and the esteemed Purple Palm restaurant – be sure to try the spiced beef empanadas with tomatillo salsa fresca, guajillo chili and chimichurri.
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Ace Hotel & Swim Club

Hotel
Map View
Ace Hotel and Swim Club
Courtesy of Ace Hotel and Swim Club / Expedia
This desert-modern boutique hotel, formerly a motel with a Denny’s next door, is up there with the hippest places to stay in Palm Springs. A range of colorful LPs neatly spaced out on shelves greet you at the reception desk, and there’s more of that bohemian vibe in some of the rooms, which have old vinyl and record players to enjoy. There are also two big pools, a vintage photo booth and lots of communal fireplaces to relax around. Check out the Amigo Room bar, with live music, DJs and bingo.
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Kimpton Rowan Palm Springs Hotel

Hotel
Map View
Courtesy of Kimpton Rowan Palm Springs Hotel / Expedia
There are a lot of amazing hotel pools in Palm Springs, but very few rooftops with mountain views to rival those of the Kimpton Rowan. The hotel is right by downtown but still feels tranquil, not least when you’re sipping on a cocktail at the High Bar next to that pool, or enjoying the ceviche of the day. There’s a wellness element too, with in-room spa services and yoga classes from Power Yoga Palm Springs at a discount for guests.
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Arrive Palm Springs

Boutique Hotel
Map View
Courtesy of Arrive Palm Springs / Expedia
If you’re driving into Palm Springs from the north, you’ll hit Arrive just as Palm Canyon Drive splits in two north of downtown. You won’t be able to miss it either, with its striking orange-brown facade constructed in 2016 in homage to the mid-century modern aesthetic of Palm Springs. It’s all arranged around a community space including a pool, fire pits, cabanas, ping-pong tables and a bocce ball court. The light-filled rooms are studios or patios – with the latter you get your own outdoor space and a poolside lounger reserved for you every morning. It takes its coffee very seriously too – there’s an artisan Cartel Coffee Lab café attached.

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  • The Ritz-Carlton, Rancho Mirage

    Chain Hotel, Luxury
    Map View
    Courtesy of The Ritz-Carlton, Rancho Mirage / Expedia
    The location of Rancho Mirage is a big selling point, up in the hills on Frank Sinatra Drive, just south of Palm Springs and with astonishing views across Coachella Valley. It’s worth being a little removed from the city for that desert-oasis feel and great hiking right on your doorstep. If all you want to do is kick back by the pool – there are two of them – in a VIP cabana, you certainly can. There’s also a luxury spa with holistic therapies and indigenous ingredients and the Edge Steakhouse, with floor-to-ceiling windows to take in that view, or the Air Pool Bar by the water for sushi, burgers, tacos and cocktails.
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    Miramonte Indian Wells Resort & Spa

    Resort, Spa Hotel
    Map View
    Courtesy of Miramonte Indian Wells Resort and Spa / Expedia
    Like the Ritz-Carlton, this is another real getting-away-from-it-all option, situated further southeast along Route 111. The desert views are of the Santa Rosa Mountains, and three swimming pools – hot, cool and a quiet option. You can take a shuttle service to the Indian Wells Golf Resort if you fancy a round. Try a Miramonte Bloody Mary the morning after a few too many local craft beers – it comes with a kosher salted rim garnished with black-pepper maple bacon, dill pickle and a steamed shrimp.
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    Avalon Hotel and Bungalows

    Boutique Hotel
    Map View
    Courtesy of Avalon Hotel and Bungalows / Expedia
    There’s a real Beverly Hills vibe at Avalon Hotel and Bungalows, with its immaculate grounds, Spanish-style studios and no fewer than three pools, surrounded by cabanas and private villas – all of which makes sense when you learn there’s a sister Avalon Hotel in Hollywood. You’ll never get tired of floating servers proffering coconut-water cocktails, and there’s croquet, table tennis or cornhole on the lawn, plus free yoga and meditation classes.
    Everything you need to know
    These recommendations were updated on January 4, 2021 to keep your travel plans fresh.