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The Saguaro Palm Springs: Bright and Budget Friendly

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  Site Where: 1800 E Palm Canyon [map], Palm Springs, CA, United States
January 31, 2013 at 4:26 PM | by | ()

Welcome to Palm Springs. We hope you like bright colors and sunshine, because that's the specialty of the The Saguaro Palm Springs. This is only the second Saguaro, after the The Saguaro Scottsdale, but it comes from a company with a very large collection of hotels: Joie de Vivre.

The Saguaro Palm Springs opened in February 2012 and used to be a Holiday Inn, a fact immediately evident from the classic, motel-style architecture. Still, one can't help but imagine how Holiday Inn execs would think of the place now—they'd probably regret having lost it! The Saguaro is a cheerful hotel that fills a gap in the Palm Springs hotel scene, for new family- and pet-friendly accommodations of modern design and amenities at a reasonable price.

WiFi Connect: Included in the $18 resort fee (see the Amenities section). It's fast and easy to access, and we accessed the network from all over the property.

Amenities: First off, let's talk bathroom toiletries. They're by Lather, which is a favorite of ours for the scents (mint thyme! bamboo lemongrass!) and for the fact they treat our hair and skin well. Outside the bathroom, the room is equipped with the usual extras like a coffeemaker and minibar, plus some plush robes that make it far easier to head down to the pool if you've forgotten a swimsuit coverup.

Speaking of the pool, it's in the courtyard along with a few hot tubs, a pool cafe, bocce courts and other picnic/chill out areas. The $18 resort fee includes use of all this, secure self-parking, daily yoga classes, wireless internet and the shuttle to the airport or downtown.

What we liked:
· Location! It's on East Palm Canyon and thus quick driving distance to dine at other cool hotels, hit up downtown Palm Springs, or zip off to the airport. There's bus lines on Palm Canyon if you're into public transportation, but the airport/downtown shuttle is complimentary as part of the resort fee.
· Room size. Families won't feel cramped here, and our room definitely had enough space for some yoga or breakdancing.
· Food and beverage. We ate at both Tinto and El Jefe and, had we stayed longer than two days, probably would've hit up the pool bar as well. Tinto by Iron Chef Jose Garces is excellent with its fancier sit-down area, very cool bar portion, and outdoor terrace with fire pit tables. El Jefe, also by Garces but more casual than Tinto, was our favorite for the small plates (omg the Esquites!) and margarita/happy hour specials.
·The price. Palm Springs isn't exactly an expensive destination, but newer hotels with a focus on design can be pricey. The Saguaro is just right, ranging from $89 to $149 to start (plus a resort fee of $18). We'd recommend opting for the Weekender package, as it includes martinis, a second weekend night at half price, a spa discount and no resort fee.
· The vibe of the place. It felt...so friendly. Maybe it was all the bright colors, or families actually keeping their kids under control, or all those margaritas we had at happy hour, but The Saguaro kept us smiling.

What we didn't like:
· "City view" rooms really miss out on the stunning mountain views, but they are cheaper for a reason.
· We weren't asked if we liked orange at check-in. Seeing as how our entire room was like, 70% bright orange, that would have been nice. Luckily we love the color orange, but would've hated to get stuck in a green or pink room.
· The beds in the room are great, but the chairs aren't made for kicking back for more than a few minutes as they're quite rigid.

Bottom Line:
A++ would stay again, to borrow eBay review style. Usually we hate on resort fees, but here they seemed worth it with all the extras included. This makes for an...an easy experience and it's not difficult to think that you rule the coop. What's more is that The Saguaro, true to its name for a desert cactus, seems like it really flourishes on the hottest, sunniest days.

We stayed at The Saguaro as a guest of Virgin America while on assignment for another publication, but all photos and opinions are completely our own.

[Photos: HotelChatter]

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