You might not think about looking for water in the desert, but it's easy to find it in Desert Hot Springs, located about 10 miles north of Palm Springs and near Joshua Tree National Park.
In Desert Hot Springs, there are so many hot spring spas that you might think there's water bubbling up everywhere. Actually, the healing waters come from wells instead, fed to resorts where you can soak in natural, spring-fed swimming pools, go for spa treatments, and generally relax. The list below gives you information about each location, but these are a few things to know in general:
- Some places are clothing optional, and that is noted in their description. You can keep your attire on if you want to, but you are almost sure to see others who are completely nude.
- All of the resorts have rooms available for overnight stays. Some require a two-night minimum.
- Where noted, you can enjoy the hot springs without staying overnight by paying a day use fee. That fee may be waived if you also get a spa treatment.
- For planning your budget: Desert Hot Springs room tax is 12 percent.
- Except where noted, pets are not allowed (but service animals are).
The following list is alphabetical order. Because it's hard to relax in a place that has customer service issues, resorts that receive very low ratings are not included.
Aqua Soleil Hotel and Mineral Water Spa is possibly the largest property in Desert Hot Springs, with lots of room choices. The spa offers a somewhat limited selection of services. Their Soleil Suites have private, jetted, in-ground mineral water pools.
El Morocco Inn and Spa is decorated in Moroccan style with furnishings imported from Morroco. They have a warm mineral water pool, Jacuzzi, and two dry saunas. The spa offers lots of treatments and packages, and day visits are available. Their romantic add-on packages make El Morocco the perfect place for that special getaway.
The Good House boasts spring-fed mineral pools, a lagoon, and garden but no spa. Day passes are available but require reservations on weekends. Adults only over 21 years old. Dogs weighing less than 45 pounds are allowed, with an extra fee.
Hope Springs Resort offers ten rooms (some with kitchens) and three pools in a 1950s-style building nicely renovated in a minimalist style. They have three spring-fed pools. Spa services include massages and whole body treatments. No children allowed.
Lido Palms Resort & Spa offers amenities that include indoor and outdoor mineral pools, a sauna, a full-service spa, and water therapy treatments.
Living Waters Spa is a clothing optional bed and breakfast built around a hot spring, with two warm water pools. They also strive to give you the best massage you ever had. It is open for day use which includes complimentary afternoon hors d'oeuvres. Children are not allowed. They have a two-night minimum, but if you only want to stay one night, call them to ask about last-minute availability.
Miracle Manor boasts an organic approach halfway between a spa and a retreat center, with no clocks (they'll come to remind you if you have a massage scheduled) and of course, the hot spring waters. You can schedule a spa treatment or a private yoga session. Adult-only, all guests must be 21 and over. They are cannabis and canine friendly.
Nurturing Nest Mineral Hot Springs Retreat and Spa is a small, 7-room retreat that offers hot springs, spa treatments, and a holistic approach. Their spa services include several types of massage and healing services for the mind and spirit. They have two pools and day use is sometimes available. They also offer healing retreats that promote well-being or help people to recover from trauma.
The O Spa has 13 rooms, some with kitchens. They have three natural mineral spring pools, an outdoor Turkish waterfall shower, a Pétanque court, steam sauna, and three private poolside cabanas. They are also Southern California’s’ first hotel to offer Cannabis room service. Well behaved, socialized pets are welcome.
Sagewater Spa is a smartly-renovated 1950s property with minimalist decor. All rooms have fully-equipped kitchens, and the swimming pool (which is kept at 90 degrees) uses water from a nearby spring. They offer a long list of spa treatments, and you can book an intuitive reading with their clairvoyant.
Sea Mountain Resort and Spa is a clothing optional resort with room for 15 overnight guests and a definite adults-only, party atmosphere. They have a mineral water pool and offer massages and other spa treatments. Day visits are available.
The Spring Resort & Spa offers rooms with small kitchens and a grocery delivery service that allows you to stay put once you check in. Some of the rooms have private soaking tubs. They offer yoga classes and a full menu of spa services, including day spa options. You can also get a day pass just for soaking. Guests must be 18 years of age or older.
Tuscan Springs Hotel & Spa has two natural hot mineral water Jacuzzis and a large natural hot mineral water pool. It has 16 rooms with Italian-inspired decor and allows adults over 21 only. The spa offers massages, body treatments, and facials. Day spa options are available.
Two Bunch Palms has the most extensive and beautiful grounds in Desert Hot Springs, and it is the only resort with an on-site restaurant. It is said to be Prohibition-era gangster and businessman Al Capone's "Fortress West," but nowadays it's more of a fortress against stress. The spa offers a full menu of treatments, and day visits are available. Besides all that, you can take classes or enjoy their summer movie series. All guests must be over 18 years old.
More Hot Springs
If you love hot springs and want to find more, check the guide to California hot springs. If you're looking for more clothing optional resorts, you'll find them in the complete guide to California nudist resorts.