For those of you that don’t plan on reading my whole review, I’ll cut to the chase – I can’t imagine ever staying anywhere other than the Orbit In when traveling to Palm Springs. If you want the “old Palm Springs” experience, stay here.
My husband is a bit of a nut for mid-century modern furniture and architecture. I normally plan all our vacations, but he insisted on doing the research this time and selecting the hotel. He picked the “restored” – not “renovated” or “refurbished”, but “restored” – Orbit In. I didn’t have very high expectations, but I was willing to play along. We arrived at about 5pm, and from the office I could see a group of people hanging around and in the pool with martini glasses and Dean Martin wafting out of the speakers. We were told that on weekends there is a free happy hour from 5 to 6, with wine and the house drink – the orbitini. Someone walks us to our room (one of just 9 in the entire hotel) and points out features along the way … coffee and tea available early every morning at the Orbitini Bar, refrigerator stocked with sodas by the pool, misting system at the roof line to keep things cool in the desert heat …. and of course the pool, which looked mighty good on that particular 100 degree June day.
Then he unlocks our room door, which was about 10 steps to the pool edge (as were all of the other 8 rooms), with a huge picture window right onto the pool and a stunning view of the mountains beyond. The décor was mid-century fun – I’m sure my husband could tell you the actual names of the furniture pieces, but what I noticed was the record player and stack of Frank Sinatra albums, the lava lamp, and the martini shaker and glasses. Now THOSE are some unexpected room amenities! There was an actual separate kitchen, compete with one piece frig-stove-sink-cabinet unit and Formica table. And the bathroom had original pink tile and cabinetry. None of it was fancy by today’s standards, but it was honestly restored and clean, and we thought "perfect".
Included in the rates was a very nice Continental breakfast … juices, organic granola, fresh berries, toast, bagels – that sort of thing. We enjoyed it very much, and only felt the need on one morning to go out for a hot breakfast.
The owners and staff could not have been nicer. They mingled with the guests during happy hour, and my husband really enjoyed talking with the owners and other guest about mid-century architecture and the history of the hotel.
Each evening the hotel guests would leave for dinner, but would inevitably make their way back to the hotels pool lounge chairs to watch the star show in the night sky. Truly a perfect ending to a day’s activities, and something we grew to really look forward to.
I also wanted to make a comment about the hotel’s location. It was in a neighborhood of houses and a few other similarly sized hotels, and was extremely quiet, yet it was only about a two block walk to the heart of the restaurant and shopping experience that is Palm Canyon Drive. Also adding to the “quiet” was the fact that the hotel was adult only (or at least it was the weekend we were there). You just cannot overestimate how much more pleasant an afternoon at the pool can be without kids holding cannonball competitions – nough said.
So, obviously from my review you can guess that I would give Orbit In my highest rating and would without question stay there again and/or recommend it to family and friends (actually, we already have). I can guarantee you it’s not the fanciest or most amenity ridden hotel in Palm Springs -- if that's what you are after, find another hotel. But if you’re hoping to unwind and maybe even take a giant step back in time for the weekend, you will not be disappointed at the Orbit In.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Two acclaimed, intimate settings near the mountain in downtown Palm Springs. The restored mid-century modern realm inspires leisurely poolside bliss while friendly staff oversees diverse clientele who enjoy spectacular views and vintage tunes. Wake up to organic coffee and extensive continental breakfast then ride a cruiser bike, enjoy the saline pool and Jacuzzi, or surrender to personalized in-room massage before winding down with "Orbitinis" or wine at the Boomerang Bar. Free high-speed wireless internet too! ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Orbit In Hotel Palm Springs