Oasis in the Desert

The economy may be going sour, but you can still vacation. The Hope Springs motel is a hidden gem in Desert Hot Springs offering mid-century modern at mid-century prices.

BY Corey Scholibo

December 09 2008 1:00 AM ET

With the weather
cooling in Los Angeles it's time to escape to our
favorite weekend destination, Palm Springs. But as the
economy dives further south those high-end hotels are
looking a little too pricey. Not to worry. A few miles
north of downtown Palm Springs sits Hope Springs, an
affordable gem for the unfussy set.

A fully restored
and modernized motel, Hope Springs is situated at the
edge of Desert Hot Springs, a rundown town that is itself
nothing to look at. But the fresh feel of Hope Springs
is worth a venture off the beaten path. The
mid-century modern experience begins on arrival as you set
your sights on a tiled pool full of floating
flowers and surrounded by pillows. You will be
personally greeted by the woman who runs the place and
escorted to one of the 10 guest room on the property. The
rooms are purposefully Spartan and feature a
deconstructed wall-free closet jutting diagonally into
the center of the room, a Japanese-style platform bed,
balloon-shaped hanging paper lamps, and a sitting chair. The
floors are polished concrete, which continues out to
the private balcony outside each room. Windows are
left open to allow the swamp coolers to keep the room
temperate -- privacy is gained by pulling back an enormous
white sheet strung from a wire across the middle of
the room. No TVs here; entertainment is a good book
read beside one of the three natural hot spring pools
in the courtyard outside your room -- the hottest of which
is housed in a tin-covered gazebo -- or on the grass patio
that looks south over the town and desert below. Some
rooms feature a kitchen space complete with authentic
mid-century dishware and a small fridge, though the
adorable classic stoves are nonfunctional.

Tags: Travel

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