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Review: Parker Palm Springs

One of our favorite places to visit in California is the Parker Palm Springs, the most exclusive resort in Palm Springs and a well-known weekend scene for LA celebs and weekenders such as the Kardashians. Sadly, the hotel recently completed a messy divorce from Starwood/Marriott, making it inaccessible for those looking to visit using points. We were curious to see how the change in management has impacted the hotel.

Booking

We booked the Parker directly on their website, which is where you can find the best deals to book at the hotel. While rates often start above $600/night, during low season the Parker often offers attractive packages that can only be booked directly from their website. For example, we were able to book a package that gave us a $150 spa credit when booking a normal weekend rate.

Room

Because the Parker is no longer part of Marriott/Starwood, the hotel does not offer elite recognition. However, it appeared that the hotel does have a CRM system and perhaps favors repeat guests, since when we arrived we were happy to be upgraded to a large poolside room with a private patio. We also happened to be visiting in the spring, when Bougainvillea were in full bloom.

 

The hotel is bursting with personality, having been redesigned head to toe by famed ceramicist Jonathan Adler.

For one night I also paid to upgrade to a villa. The villa is quite an upgrade - it is a full one bedroom apartment-style space, with living room, bar, kitchen, and a small back yard.

The private backyard is the perfect place to have a drink, read a book and catch some rays.

One of my favorite things about the Parker is the incredible set of toiletries that they offer, including Hermes bar soap, Le Labo shampoo, L'occitane hand soap, and full-size Acqua Di Parma body soap and lotion. This may be the best hotel toiletry combination I've ever seen.

Grounds

The property boasts a number of secluded trails leading to private pools, fire pits, hammocks, and fountains. Because of the small size of the property and secluded common areas, it is easy to walk around the hotel and feel like you're completely alone.

Dining

The hotel offers two restaurants on-site, including Monsieur Benjamin and the famous Norma's - which offers the most decadent brunch in Palm Springs. You can also dine at both without a reservation.

The hotel also offers three micro-bars, including a poolside lemonade stand.

Spa

 

Now that the property is fully independent, it offers spa access to all guests. The spa is one of the most beautiful in California, with a fully indoor pool surrounded by luxurious tents and cabanas & terrycloth-covered lounge chairs.

Overall, the Parker is one of the most unique hotels in California, and is one of our favorites. While it's no longer possible to get a great deal there with points, it is certainly worth the occasional splurge to stay there - especially during shoulder season if you can score a package deal with a property credit.

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