Cue up the Jimmy Buffet as it’s time for an island getaway (without leaving the states). Margaritaville Resort Palm Springs has tons to offer families looking for a little relaxation time and it is the perfect home base for all your Palm Springs and Joshua Tree adventures. We checked it out and have all the intel on everything we loved about it.
1. The resort's retro design and upscale amenities are the perfect combo for families.
As soon as we arrived at Margaritaville Resort Palm Springs, we could feel the relaxing island vibe taking over (and we needed it after hours in the car with the kids). The mid-century building encircles an inner pool area that was soon to become our home base for the weekend. Families can enjoy snacks and a game of cards at the many sitting areas in the expansive lobby. Even pets are welcome!
2. Dining options are convenient (and kid-friendly).
The resort really takes into consideration the fact that families are likely to be on the go when visiting and they offer both sit-down and grab-and-go dining options. The on-site restaurant offers breakfast, lunch and dinner service that you can enjoy in the restaurant, on the adjoining patio or in your room. The kid meals were large enough to satisfy the teens in our crew and the chicken sandwich was a family favorite.
We particularly appreciated Joe Merchant's Coffee and Provisions for quick breakfast eats, to-go sandwiches, coffees and pizzas. They also had snacks and alcoholic beverages available. Swing by for your coffee and egg sandwich, and grab a sandwich to bring with you for your Joshua Tree visit.
3. The resort's spa is a must-visit.
Be sure your visit includes some time at the St. Somewhere Spa. This expansive space will (almost) make you forget you've brought your kids along with you as you fully immerse yourself in its relaxing ambiance. Book a Swedish massage or mani/pedi and be sure to bring your swimsuit with you so that you can enjoy the hot tub and sauna afterward.
4. You'll want to spend all day (and night) by the pool.
Be sure your schedule allows for sufficient pool time because it's where the kids will want to hang, we know it. Lounge chairs, a fire pit, cornhole games and an outdoor bar surround the pool that's in the center of the property. You can order food to eat poolside and enjoy views of the San Jacinto Mountains while the kids enjoy the water. There's even a hot tub for post-hike relaxation.
5. Family-sized rooms with a view.
The property offers tons of room options for families of all sizes from the luxurious, two-level Jimmy Buffet suite to traditional hotel rooms. Request a room that faces the pool and you'll get a balcony or patio with outdoor space to enjoy your morning coffee. We enjoyed the Hemisphere suite with a separate dining area, mini-fridge, microwave and coffee maker that made breakfast time easy, even when some wanted to sleep in.
6. Nearby adventures are plentiful.
The resort's prime location on the main drag in Palm Springs makes for a great location when you want to check out all that Palm Springs has to offer. Our robust guide to visiting Palm Springs with kids has tons of ideas for what to do in the area like hopping aboard the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway, going on a windmill tour and stopping by the Cabazon Dinosaur Museum.
We spent a full day visiting Joshua Tree National Park and would definitely recommend it to families. About an hour's drive from the resort, Joshua Tree gives you a glimpse of another world full of weirdly shaped plants and massive rock formations. You'll want to make sure you have gassed up your car before you go as gas stations are few and far between near the park entrance. Bring food, water and sunscreen with you and do yourself a favor and pay your entrance fee online before you head over. You'll save yourself a major headache and avoid the line at the park entrance.
We entered the park at the south entrance near Cottonwood Springs and exited at the west entrance. This route led us to many of the park's top destinations like the Cholla Cactus Garden and Skull Rock. We particularly liked stopping at the White Tank Campground and hiking to Arch Rock. It was a super easy hike and there were tons of boulders for climbing.
The Living Desert is also about an hour from the resort and we had a great time visiting the animals, hiking the trails and even feeding the giraffes. Pro tip: save the giraffes for the end of your visit (they are located near the entrance) if you need a way to motivate your kids through the day. Little ones will love the carousel and you'll definitely want to make note of any animal encounters they have scheduled as they provide a great way to meet some of the animals up close. The brand-new Rhino Safari is located right near the giraffes and a great way to see these majestic creatures in action.
Editor’s note: This trip was paid for by Margaritaville Resort Palm Springs but all opinions belong to the writer.