Updated: Feb 17, 2019
The easiest way to judge how nice your stay was at any hotel is to take note of how you feel when it’s time to depart. 11AM checkout time at La Serena Villas was truly a sad affair. A child forced to leave the playground, a wild animal snatched from its habitat, an artist uprooted from the studio… I’m not being dramatic. It’s simple; La Serena Villas is paradise.
I woke up in the morning and began my day with a soak in the outdoor tub, luxuriously filled with lemon-scented L’Occitane soaps and bubbles. I rang for my personal “breakfast basket” at 7:30AM. The basket was brought straight to my door, which sat behind a gate.
The surprise selection of goodies is different every morning, with warm croissants, jam and toast, juice, fruit, hard-boiled eggs and yogurt. No, this is not a storybook fairytale. This is a real hotel destination that you can visit. I’m in love with the villa-style accommodations/ On the porch of many of the villas hangs a cushioned, comfortable basket-style swing that is perfect for devouring a light selection of breakfast items in the morning sun while scrolling though your news feed.
Check in is at 3PM, which means it’s 6PM on the west coast and it’s totally time to indulge in the bienvenue bubbly.
“The alcohol usually works in our favor. Almost everyone is more relaxed, except for the woman who slapped the unicorn floaty the other day…” owner Lars Viklund explained and laughed.
When you first set for in your villa, you’re welcomed by a bottle of Corralejo Tequila, as well as pink Himalayan salt, limes, and peanut chasers. The note beside the tall shot glass reads:
“We hope you have a wonderful stay at our home away from home, La Serena Villas. May this Tequila be the start of many more memories to come. Welcome to our family. We hope your stay is magical.” - Lars and Kelly Viklund
If tequila isn’t your thing, stop reading now. Just kidding. Azucar restaurant has an extensive list of specialty cocktails such as the Swan with cucumber vodka, pamplemousse liqueur, grapefruit juice, agave, soda, and blueberries. Also, there’s a Bevmo across the street so you can stock your villa’s mini fridge. After you’ve explore your room and the layout of the land, jump on a floaty, read by the pool, or book a spa treatment.
Whisper’s is the name of the hotel’s spa and also the sounds you make at night at La Serena Villas. The hotel prides itself on being both private and serene; there was nary a loud voice or disturbance over the course of my stay.
Because of the hotel’s seclusion and privacy, over the Coachella Music and Arts Festival weekends, celebrities often choose La Serena Villas as their getaway. During this special weekend, the guests are mellow and the hotels is always booked (book in advance!)
When it gets chilly in the evening, enjoy happy hour and hors d’oeuvres with your group of friends at Azucar Restaurant located right behind the pool. Order too many rosés and then head over to Whisper’s and dip your feet in the heated whirlpool. The spa is celebrated for its massages and skin care.
“It’s small but might and I have great therapists, the best in Palm Springs,” Lars says.
If you’re staying in, invite your friends or lover back to your room and get snug and toasty around your personal fire pit on your back porch and look up at the stars. At the risk of sounding corny, this is a special place where memories are made. La Serena Villas is an experience that is meant to be shared with people who will appreciate and relaxed and intimate atmosphere and can turn up without turning up the volume too high.