Travel: Destination Rancho Las Palmas

The Wave Of The Future Is Splashtopia, A Water-World Aa Rancho Las Palmas


Looking for a great oasis in the Palm Springs area? Well there’s a wonderful water-world of adventure awaiting in the heart of Rancho Mirage, at the Rancho Las Palmas Resort and Spa.

The classic desert resort just had a $35 million makeover on its 240 acres, and recently unveiled many new features that will impress travelers. From dining places, to wet and wild attractions.

I was delighted with the charming classic Spanish-style guest buildings, clustered around lovely courtyards and gardens. The lushly landscaped grounds provide an awesome view from just about every place on the property. I found myself saying “ahh” at every turn.

The resort’s signature restaurant, BluEmber, not only has fine food for breakfast, lunch and dinner, but also a variety of ways to enjoy it. The lively outdoor plaza seating area is accented with fire pits and a dramatic fire-topped fountain. It is best enjoyed at night with the twinkling stars above adding even more atmosphere to the fabulous place. Inside the BluEmber dining area has an elegant air, with cozy alcoves. At the bar, a tapas-style menu is offered if you get the nibbles.

Other dining venues include the casual Splash Grill situated poolside. The Palms Café serves Starbucks and offers brick-oven pizzas, and acts as the resort’s internet café. The Spa Café has a menu that spans the globe and is ideal for refreshments between spa treatments.

Creating a swinging night-spot vibe is the new R Bar. It has a pool table, shuffleboard table and three flat screen TVs that help give it a fun-and-games feeling as you and your friends sip your favorite drinks.


For daytime activities, many gravitate towards the impressive Ted Robinson-designed 27-hole golf course. It is a feast for the eyes with fairways that meander over gently rolling terrain dotted with more than 1,500 palm trees, and around six sparkling lakes at the base of snow-capped Mount San Jacinto.

For families visiting the resort, the big draw is Splashtopia, the crowning touch of the Rancho Las Palmas’ renovation. It is a 1.2-acre water attraction that features its own sandy beach, two 100-foot water slides, swimming pools and a water-play zone with fountains and sprinklers. And it’s all ringed by a “lazy river” which has guests floating along as if they don't have a care in the world.

Oh, on another side of the resort there’s a tranquil pool for adults who want to get away from the kids. But if you’re young at heart, you’ll love joining kids of all ages who find it fun to drift along on an inner-tube and traverse the lengthy man-made river. A mild current provides an effortless ride around the 425-foot stream that turns the place into a water-world that’s fun for everyone.

Splashtopia is the “wave” of the future for resorts that just wanna have fun!

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Margie Barron has written for a wide variety of outlets including Gannett newspapers, Nickelodeon, Tiger Beat and 16 Magazine, Fresh!, Senior Life, Production Update, airline magazines, etc. Margie is also proud to have been half of the husband & wife writing team Frank & Margie Barron, who had written together for various entertainment and travel publications for more than 38 years.