Midsummer’s Night: Family Fun in the Sun

If you're a contrarian thinker like me, you may consider escaping to the desert while everyone else is running to the beach to beat the heat.

According to Inc.com: Contrarian thinkers are trailblazers in business. They are the polarizing visionaries who are just as likely to be called crazy as brilliant, and they have the foresight to see hidden opportunities and seize them at just the right moment.

I've discovered that I actually enjoy the clear, dry desert air and peaceful surroundings, which  are number one on my list. After living in Los Angeles for a few decades, I've also discovered that the traffic is so stressful that driving in the opposite direction to escape the crowds is exhilarating. Now, it's hot enough out there this summer in the city, but in the desert, you actually can experience a warm breeze and even rain. In the summer of 2012 there were downpours! Of course you probably won't go hiking in the mid-day sun, but a trip up the Aerial Tramway will be an thrilling experience. Especially since it is the worlds largest rotating tram car, and travels two and a half miles up to the mountain. It will surprise you when you hit the peak and feel as if you're in another dimension, but you arrive at the  Mt. San Jacinto State Park.

"Once you reach the Mountain Station—elevation 8,516 feet—enjoy two restaurants, observation decks, natural history museum, two documentary theaters, gift shop and over 50 miles of hiking trails."

However, if you're afraid of heights, just  visit a top level resort that is surrounded by water. One special place for the whole family is the Hyatt Regency Resort and Spa in Indian Wells, California. There’s something special about a desert resort that boasts “seven heavenly pools to choose from.”

“This mystical palm grove of our children's water-slide, and fascinating indigenous plants showcase seven unique swimming pools, created for sun-worshippers and water-lovers, alike”

The truth is out, this Indian Wells oasis does have the absolute best water features in the desert  for families and adults in the Palm Springs area. This resort satisfies the sun worshiper, the swimmer who loves laps, the peaceful warrior who needs a stress free oasis away from the main action. However, even though is called the Children’s Pool, the Kid’s Corner is also the scene for big kids, like me who absolutely LOVE the 60 foot spiral waterslide! Not content to go up and down just a couple of times, our room overlooked this water adventure and we were beckoned to try it several times, consecutively, each day. While the little ones were racing up and down, over and over again, we also followed and became lost in the fun!

As a boomerbabe/health nut, there is no way I will go to a giant waterpark (as enticing as it seems) because of all the chlorine and chemicals in the pools. However at this Hyatt, you know the water is kept clean without overdosing on all the toxic chemicals. Since it is a ritzy resort, there are less people to crash into and more space to relax. But if you’re not a fan of the daytime summer heat, the pools are romantic at night under the starry summer sky.

The grounds of the resort are resplendent with lush green landscapes, and artsy oversized pots of palms aligning the passageway from one pool area to the next. There are meandering water features surrounding the 5 Star villas that feel like you are on a refreshing reflective lake in the middle of the desert.

The resort is close the tony enclave of chic El Paseo Shopping and dining. In the heart of all the local sites and activities, the resort felt nice to stay put and not even wander outside the grounds. Besides, the Agua Serena Spa on property is an organic spa that focuses on bringing well-being and balance to the body.

“Agua Serena translates to tranquil waters. Water is the source of life and in this desert region water is a coveted resource.”

The spa menu is unique with clever names like the “Spa Tapas Menu’ which offers two a la carte additions like reflexology or even Elementary skincare for kids! The Serena Skin Specifics and the Facial Summer Cooler Body Treatment for only $190 (That’s two fifty minute treatments)

Of course there's the golf and tennis that cannot be beat. Considering that this is the fav hangout for tennis pros during the tournament season.

If you’re seeking fine dining, there are many spots in the area. However, if you want a meal that will last in your memories, then make a reservation at La Spiga Restaurant in Palm Desert (off El Paseo).

This authentic Tuscan-style villa,  surrounded by rose gardens, herb beds and fruit trees hits the spot for a gourmet meal. In the season, outdoor dining is preferred, with three gazebo's and the patio that wraps around the entire building offering a spectacular view of the mountains. The service is beyond excellent, especially the waitstaff, bar and if you’re lucky enough to get the royal treatment from John, the manager. Everyone that works there takes pride in their being a part of this special eatery. The owners are highly regarded in the gourmet food world.

“Vince is a multiple award winning Chaine des Rotisseur chef who has cooked for prime ministers and other heads of state, ambassadors, movie and sports stars, and international business leaders. As hostess, Connie ensures each and every guest receives impeccable service.” There’s lots of photos, especially a great shot of one of America’s sweetheart couples, Ryan O’Neal and Farrah Fawcett, in their heyday. All the dishes are a great choice, but especially the homemade chocolate dessert!

If you want to Escape from LA to beat the crowds, cash in on some special discount packages, without going far, then a visit to the Palm Springs area is just the ticket.

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