Best Hotel Pools in Palm Springs
Palm Springs is the “pool capital” of the world. When you fly into Palm Springs International Airport, you’ll literally see little blue dots sprinkled all over the city, like mini-mirages beckoning you to cool off from the desert heat. As such, nearly every hotel in Palm Springs not only has a pool ~ but many of them have absolutely amazing pools. Below, I’m breaking these fabulous pools down by category: the best for families, for laying out, for partying, & the ones with the most “adult-chic” vibe. So if you’re ready to dream about warmer climes, enjoy this tour of the “Best Hotel Pools in Palm Springs!”
Best Pools in Palm Springs for Partying
Our list of the best pools in Palm Springs starts at The Saguaro: which is a colorful vintage photographer’s dream. Their rainbow-colored pool is framed by the San Jacinto Mountains, making it a great backdrop for photos. Known for its young, fun vibe ~ the Saguaro is more of a “party pool” than a chill one, so bring your girlfriends here for a fun retreat. Try the fish tacos & happy hour at their newly renovated bar, or play a game of ping pong while making new friends.
Check rates at the Saguaro here.
Ace is the place ~ & at one time, it was the “hippest” hotel in Palm Springs. Some say it still is, & their pool is definitely one of the most happening places in Palm Springs. There’s a hipster vibe here (which some people love, some people….not so much). Their food, drinks, & mini-bar all garner HIGH ratings from guests ~ so make sure to partake during your stay. They also have the “Feel Good” spa here, in case you feel like a pool-side massage…
3. Splash House
Splash House isn’t just one place: it’s a roving “Pool Party Music Festival” that takes place yearly in June & August (when it’s uber-HOT in the desert)!! Hotels where Splash House been held include The Riviera (now the Margaritaville), The Saguaro, & the Renaissance Esmeralda. This is one of the biggest parties in the desert, & is definitely for the young & beautiful crowd….with a similar vibe to Coachella.
Best Pools for Families in Palm Springs
4. Renaissance Esmeralda in Indian Wells
Next up are the best pools for families, & in this category: we need to venture outside of Palm Springs proper. The better family pools lie in Palm Desert & beyond. First up, in Indian Wells (near the Tennis Gardens) is the massive Renaissance Esmeralda. Their outdoor pool features a sandy beach, making it popular with kids ~ but their spa also features an indoor pool, so if you’re looking for a more “adult” escape, you can still find it here. Soak in the gorgeous mountain views poolside, & grab food from their H20 Pool Bar or one of their many dining options.
5. JW Marriott Desert Springs in Palm Desert
This is the hotel that we ALWAYS looked forward to visiting when we were kids! From the flamingos to the huge pool, to taking their “gondolas” around the lake & over to delicious Mikado’s restaurant: there’s SO much for kids to “oooohhh” & “AHHH” over here! And the JW’s two championship 18-hole golf courses & world-class spa will keep mom & dad busy. In their large pool area, sip a cocktail from the Oasis Poolside Bar & Grill or grab a Starbucks in the hotel. There’s something for everyone here…
6. Omni Rancho Las Palmas in Rancho Mirage
My childhood memories include a lot of nostalgia for this hotel, which is now called the Omni Rancho Las Palmas. It’s quite possibly the best pool for kids in the desert, with its meandering “lazy river” AND 100-foot water slides! What more could a kid ask for??! (Especially one who’s been cooped up for the last year!) There’s also a sandy beach here, a cliff-side hot tub, & an adult’s-only pool called the Azure Pool. But my guess is: even adults will enjoy the lazy river here….not just the kids : )
Best Palm Springs Pools for “Chill” Laying Out
The Riviera/Margaritaville is a fantastic place for a girl’s weekend ~ especially if laying out with a drink in hand is your #1 goal. Their chic pool area has a “party” vibe at times, but most often, it’s a great place to chill out, enjoy the mountain views & some solid people-watching. With a cocktail. Even the names of their restaurants & bars invite you to “chill-ax:” with the Come Monday Cafe, the 5-O’Clock Somewhere Bar, & the License to Chill, where you can grab a cold brew or frozen beverage.
Check prices at the Margaritaville here.
The Avalon used to be called the Viceroy Hotel ~ & Viceroys, created by celebrity designer Kelly Wearstler, always give off movie-star vibes. This hotel is much smaller & more intimate than the Margaritaville (as you’d expect), & their pool is likewise smaller than most on this list. Upscale white cabanas invite you to kick off your flip flops & soak in the sun, read a magazine, & sip a bellini…
9. La Quinta Resort
There’s no resort on this list I’ve been to more frequently than the La Quinta Resort. Part of the reason: I used to live down the street, while I opened & ran the popular Stuft Pizza Bar & Grill restaurant with my family. The La Quinta Resort was my favorite getaway ~ either with girlfriend’s or by myself. Because they have over 30 pools here, you can ALWAYS find a “chill” pool…you just need to avoid the two main (& largest) pools. Maps are located all over the property, or you can simply wander around & pick your favorite pool. Almost all have views of the surrounding Santa Rosa Mountains.
10. Kimpton Rowan in Palm Springs
The Kimpton Rowan is the “new kid in town,” & its rooftop restaurant & pool give it a firm place on this list. It’s a swanky spot to stop in for a drink or grab a lounge chair, & the vibe here is “trendy chill,” with a side of great people-watching. Tucked right up against the mountains, views are stunning ~ & from its chic lobby to the glamorous rooftop, the whole place looks like it stepped out of a fashion magazine. Bring your camera & best swimsuit here!
11. The Miramonte Resort in Indian Wells
I love the Miramonte Resort. My friends & I used to do yoga on the lawn here, & their Well Spa is one of the finest in the desert. I’ve always found the vibe here extremely peaceful & relaxing (particularly compared to the Renaissance Esmeralda across the street) ~ & their beautiful pool area epitomizes relaxation. Enjoy farm-to-table offerings from their Citrus & Palm restaurant, & bring your favorite new book….because this is the ultimate place for a relaxing desert retreat.
Best “Adult” Chic Pools in Palm Springs
12. Del Marcos Hotel, $269+/night
No hotel on this list gives off more “Mad Men” vibes than the adults-only, mid-century modern-styled Del Marcos Hotel. If you’re looking for a getaway without the kids ~ with a chic, more intimate pool: check in here. The property’s 1960’s, Rat Pack feel, combined with well-designed, indoor-outdoor living spaces make this a very comfortable, nostalgic stay. Walk next door to sister property La Serena Villas to try the gorgeous Azucar restaurant.
And bonus: there’s happy hour AND you can bring your pets here!
13. Sparrows Lodge
They call themselves “rustic chic,” but there’s nothing rustic about the Sparrows’ prices! Ha ~ I joke, but this is one of the most exclusive, adult’s-only properties in Palm Springs, with a cozy & intimate pool area….perfect for a romantic retreat. This is less girl’s getaway, more second honeymoon kind-of-feel. And when you’re here: make SURE to try the food!! I’ve got a personal connection here: their renowned chef, Gabriel Woo, used to work at our family’s restaurant ~ & now he’s earned a reputation as one of the valley’s most well-respected chefs, turning out tasty fare that “feels homey,” as he says. SO PROUD of him!!!
Check out their Barn Kitchen for the latest creations, open daily from 11AM-8PM.
The ultimate name in desert chic is where Brad Pitt & Angelina Jolie held their infamous photo shoot, once upon a time: The Parker Palm Springs. Hidden behind tall cypress trees, the Parker is the ultimate adult, celebrity hideaway. When we ate here, we ran into actors you’d know from both movies & television. It’s that kind of place. Though the Parker is the ultimate in desert “cool,” in my opinion, there are better pools in Palm Springs.
But if you want to spot celebrities: this is your place.
Best Hotel Pools in Palm Springs
Because I used to live in the desert, I’ve written extensively on it! For my favorite Palm Springs day hikes, read this post. To check out the best brunch spots in town, click here. Or maybe you want to road-trip out to Salvation Mountain or Joshua Tree. Options abound here…
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