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February 5, 2013

The Saguaro Palm Springs

by Leslie Long


Pool Overview at Dusk – photo credit: Tim Street-Porter

To call The Saguaro colorful is surely an understatement and having just spent a weekend there, I can attest to the fact that the hotel’s 12 vibrant colors are a lot of fun to be around. Whether in my citrus-hued room, driving up to the eye-popping facade or lounging at the pool under lemony umbrellas, we loved being surrounded by all that color.

With bright blue skies, grass that’s greener than green, plus flowers and fruit trees galore, Palm Springs is one colorful place — but The Saguaro takes it to another level. The colors follow the light spectrum, creating different perspectives throughout the day. The tones were chosen because they’re found in native desert wildflowers.


photo credit: Tim Street-Porter

Our room was simple but extremely comfortable with a pool view balcony, big, welcoming beds and plenty of storage space. The modern design books were a nice touch. There are 245 rooms in varying color palettes, all with balconies.

The pool area offers plenty of lounge chairs, a bar, several hot tubs, bright pink towels and a nice, upbeat vibe. There’s also a day spa, gym and bikes for guest use.


Guestroom – photo credit: Paul Dyer

What’s really great about The Saguaro is the quality of the restaurants. El Jefe celebrates the culture and the food of Mexico City with a menu that focuses on the cuisine known as Distrito Federal. We had an amazing breakfast with first-rate versions of omelets, waffles and other standards, plus a bunch of unique items like The Skillet with short ribs, caramelized onion, bacon and potato.  From, fab coffee and really friendly service, it was pretty close to perfect for a big group of all ages. A late lunch another day was just as satisfying with chunky guacamole, top-notch tacos and a really excellent beer selection. Again, super friendly service. El Jefe’s lounge seating or large shared tables works well for two or twenty.


El Jefe Entrance – photo credit: Tim Street-Porter

Behind the impressive food is Iron Chef Jose Garces, a James Beard Award winner and one of the country’s most acclaimed young masters. He’s also at the helm of Tinto, the Saguaro’s larger restaurant modeled after a wine bar from the Basque region of Spain. While the hotel is bright, Tinto is dark, woody and elegant and has quickly become one of the hottest tables in town. Delicious drinks, finely crafted sangria and a large menu of inventive small plates keep things lively as soon as the doors open. Among the many delicious things we had, The Diver Scallops with demi-glace, bacon and shaved apple truly went to the head of the class. Tinto also serves weekend breakfast and brunch.


Tinto Bar – photo credit: Tim Street-Porter

The Saguaro has a hotel shuttle van for airport runs or trips into town (the hotel is just on the outskirts of downtown Palm Springs). And for all it offers, it’s nicely affordable.


The Saguaro Palm Springs

1800 East Palm Canyon Drive

Palm Springs, CA 92264



Lobby – photo credit: Tim Street-Porter


Tinto Dining Room – photo credit: Tim Street-Porter


El Jefe Bar – photo credit: Tim Street-Porter


Courtyard – photo credit: Tim Street-Porter


Bache Ball Court – photo credit: Tim Street-Porter
posted by: Leslie Long
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