A big thanks to the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort and Spa for hosting our stay so we could provide this detailed review of our experience. Also, this post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Disclosure, visit this page.

Every time I take a California road trip with my family, I’m reminded how vast and varied the state is. Drive two hours in any direction from our home in Los Angeles and you’ll find something different and beautiful. Most recently, we packed up the car and headed to Palm Desert to check into the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa for a little rest and relaxation.

Traffic on the drive to Palm Desert, California.
The Drive to Palm Desert

Palm Desert is about two hours southeast of Los Angeles and about 30 minutes (14 miles) from downtown Palm Springs. The drive from Los Angeles is scenic and one of the highlights is the San Gorgonio Pass wind farm, situated along the San Bernadino Mountains. The wind farm is home to more than 4000 wind turbines, which together, provide enough electricity to power Palm Springs and the entire Coachella Valley. It’s an endless source of conversation with our seven-year-old son who knows all about how wind turbines work thanks to Curious George on PBS Kids.

The other highlight of the drive is a stop at the Cabazon Dinosaurs, just west of Palm Springs. Our kids (ages seven and four) just love it. The two enormous dinosaurs (the T-Rex stands 65 feet tall and the brontosaurus is 150 feet long) are constructed of concrete and steel and is a popular roadside attraction, perhaps most well-known for its appearance in the 1985 film Pee Wee Herman’s Big Adventure.

Arriving at the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort and Spa

The JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort and Spa sprawls across 450 acres. A long, winding and beautifully manicured driveway leads guests to the hotel’s front entrance but it’s the flamingos that are the real showstopper.

Yes, you read that correctly. Flamingos aren’t just a motif here. Live pink Chilean flamingos wade in the waters of Flamingo Island right out front and are a delight for everyone.

Our Room

One of the best things about a resort as big as this one is that since space is not at a premium, there’s no need to skimp. We were fortunate to be hosted in an enormous suite with a connecting room so we had plenty of space to spread out.

The main bedroom had a king-size four poster bed and an ensuite bathroom with a freestanding tub and separate marble shower with multiple shower heads.

The connecting room had two queen size beds, a working desk …

JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa bathroom
… and a beautiful bathroom, also with a freestanding tub, a separate shower and one entire terrazzo tile wall.

A large living room with a comfy couch and a dining table completed the tranquil home-away-from home vibes.

The view from our room at the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa.
But best of all was this view from our room.

The Wellness Lounge

The resort is home to a 38,000 square foot spa and wellness center that’s a must-visit. The spa has 48 individual treatment rooms, spa suites, a spa bistro and a fitness center, along with a heated outdoor saltwater lap pool, a whirlpool, a Finnish sauna and a eucalyptus steam room. But the newly opened Wellness Lounge, a first for the Marriott brand, is where I spent most of my time.

The co-ed Wellness Lounge has 15 state-of-the-art lounge chairs where guests can choose from a variety of relaxation experiences. As a mom of two little ones, I heartily welcome any opportunity to relax and rejuvenate so I was excited to give the loungers a whirl.

When you walk in, the dimly lit Wellness Lounge oozes serenity. There are three different loungers to try: The NuWave Zero Gravity Wave Loungers, the Ceragem M2 Massaging Loungers and the Mind-Sync Loungers.

The Zero Gravity Wave Loungers make you feel like you’re floating thanks to their sleek design. Sink into one of them for pure rest and relaxation or choose one of the optional enhancements like an eye mask, collagen gloves and socks mask, Therabody massaging goggles or the NormaTech calf compression air massage. Each enhancement is $25.

Lounge chair inside the Wellness Lounge at the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa.
The Ceragem M2 Lounger is a heat optional massaging chair with six modes that can treat your neck, back, hips and thighs. Guests can choose up to two complimentary enhancements for this lounger, including an eye mask, NormaTech calf compression air massage, collagen gloves and feet mask and the Therabody massaging goggles.

However, my favorite of the three was the Mind-Sync Lounger. I snuggled under a blanket and put on the noise-cancelling headset. The chair combines scientifically proven vibro-acoustic sound wave therapy with luxurious zero gravity positioning to lull you into a state of supreme serenity. There are multiple music and sound tracks to choose from and I don’t know if I’ve ever felt more relaxed in my life. The gentle vibrations and the soft music were a perfect pairing to melt my mental, physical and emotional stress away. I felt myself drifting off into a peaceful sleep and woke up feeling more relaxed than I’ve felt in a long time. The entire experience was restorative.

The Wellness Lounge is offered complimentary to spa guests but you can also purchase a day pass ($125) or half-day pass ($45). And if you’re feeling peckish after your spa experience, you might want to check out the new food and drink menu at the Spa Bistro, where you’ll find a tasty selection of fresh juices, green smoothies, acai bowls, salads, sandwiches, sushi and more.

Kids Activities

One of the reasons I was able to enjoy such a restful time at the Wellness Lounge was because I knew that my kids were having a blast with their dad, taking advantage of all the kid-friendly activities and entertainment options at the resort.

JW Marriott Desert Springs pool
Their favorite thing to do, hands-down, was hang at the pool. Every chance they got, they wanted to swim. There are five outdoor pools to choose from on the resort and with a large shallow area, the family pool is perfect for little ones.

JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa, Entertainment Zone
When they weren’t in the pool, the kids loved heading over to the JW Entertainment Zone, a 12,000-square-foot arcade with duckpin bowling, retro arcade games, sport simulators, air hockey, the World’s Largest PacMan and lots more.

JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa lawn games
They also loved the lawn games …

… and playing mini golf on the 18-hole, all-natural turf putting course.

Starbucks at JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa
Food and Drink

I must admit, I love any hotel that has a Starbucks on property. I’m not a huge breakfast person but I appreciated being able to get a good cup of English Breakfast tea in the mornings (ok, and maybe a delicious slice of lemon loaf to go with it!)

Rockwood Grill, JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa
Aside from Starbucks, there are nine other dining options on the resort. We dined al fresco at Rockwood Grill for dinner. The food was delicious; I enjoyed the Fluvio’s Sausage Pasta (sausage, pappardelle, broccolini, red onions, lemon herb ricotta, garlic, olive oil) and my husband had the Wayne Farms Half Rotisserie Chicken with garlic mashed potatoes, English peas, Cipollini onions, carrots and chicken jus.) The service was great (I particularly appreciated the care the staff took regarding my son’s food allergies) and the view of the palm trees while the sun set over the majestic Santa Rosa mountains was certainly one to remember.

Our short weekend stay was not enough time to explore everything the resort has to offer – there are two championship golf courses, a world class tennis complex, a meditative garden and a boat ride along the resort’s scenic waterways – but all in all, our stay at the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort and Spa was a perfect, family-friendly weekend escape to a tranquil oasis in the desert.

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1 Comment On "The New Wellness Lounge at the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort and Spa is an Oasis Within an Oasis"
  1. Christina|

    The JW Marriott is a lovely property, and this is a great time of year to visit due to the nice weather. It looks like they have upgraded their Spa since I was last there. Great place to relax and enjoy the breath-taking views of Palm Desert.

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