The Parker Palm Springs
By Deluxe on Aug 08, 2012
One of my favorite getaways is the Parker hotel in Palm Springs. Originally Gene Autry's Melody Ranch, then the Merv Griffin Givenchy Hotel and Spa, it was redesigned by Jonathan Adler in 2004 into its current incarnation; en eclectic mix of '60s mod, '70s funky and the rat pack cool that defines Palm Springs.
The decor is fun, irreverent, and cheerful; just right for a weekend retreat with friends. The part that really makes it feel special is the fabricated back story that goes with the hotel. The idea seems to be that this is an estate that belongs to your fabulous, eccentric distant aunt and uncle (Mr. and Mrs. Parker) who are letting you and your friends stay for the weekend. This is only subtly alluded to, and yes, it's very silly, but it makes your stay seem a touch more mysterious and fun, like the Magnum PI/Robin Masters relationship. And if you don't get that reference, just go with it, I'm old.
Further contributing to the relaxed atmosphere is the layout. Rather than one big building, the "estate" consists of multiple smaller buildings connected by beautifully landscaped, rambling grounds. Amazing food, multiple swimming pools, hot tubs, croquet, tennis, petanque (a game like bocce ball), hammocks, fire ring with butterfly chairs, and various hidden conversation spots make leaving the grounds unnecessary. Brilliant.
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