The desert is a magical place, especially when a trendy boutique hotel comes with it. From Palm Springs to Joshua Tree, and Egypt, we’ve rounded up our favorite desert hotels below.
Villa Kuro (Joshua Tree, California)
5 Stars | Website | Palm Springs Intl. Airport
2 | Free WiFi; Full-equipped kitchen; Hot tub | 0
Joshua Tree National Park; Downtown Joshua Park; Joshua Tree Friendly Hills Park
Designed by Mini Inno — a boutique interior design firm based in Southern California — Villa Kuro is a carefully curated home set on 3.6 acres of unfenced desert grounds in Joshua Tree, California. The two-bed, two-bath home reflects a minimalist yet warm-feeling interior style, with natural textures and an ever-so-neutral color palette throughout the space: woven cushions, sand-toned ceramics, and dark wood furnishings pay homage to Villa Kuro’s arid environs. Guests can lounge in the former 1960s garage turned into a modern-day, peaceful tea room, which boasts expansive desert views from full-sliding glass doors.
Willow House (Terlingua, Texas)
5 Stars | Website | Del Rio International Airport
12 | Free WiFi; Full-equipped kitchen; Outdoor firepit | 0
Big Bend National Park; Santa Elena Canyon; Dorgan-Sublett Trail
Around six miles from Big Bend National Park lies Willow House: a 12-key minimalist desert retreat outside Terlingua, Texas. Influenced by Georgia O’Keeffe’s adoration for the natural world and Southwestern style, these modernist cube-shaped standalone casitas’ blueprints reflect the hues of the hotel’s desert environs. While here, guests are encouraged to cook and conversate with one another while taking in sweeping views of the Chisos Mountain Range from the 250-acre private property.
Hotel San Cristobal (Todos Santos, Mexico)
4 Stars | Website | Los Cabos International Airport
32 | 1 swimming pool; Beachfront; Bar | 2
Punta Lobos Beach; La Poza Beach; Palm Beach
Hotel San Cristobal sits beachside in the Baja town of Todos Santos (aka Cabo’s cooler younger brother that’s just over an hour north of its sibling). The décor radiates 1970s Baja beach vibes: colorful splendors freckle the premises’ ins and outs; bright woven blankets slouch atop cushions of Guadalajara-sourced furnishings; hand-stamped tiles emboss reds, greens, and yellows; traditional rustic chairs assembled with tanned pig skin and sewed cedar strips called equipales welcome visitors to “stay a while;” and a turquoise-tiled pool invites guests to toggle with the question: “Should I take a dip here or in the ocean first?” Lucky for you, both are at your fingertips. With a mezcla of Asian, Mexican, and Mediterranean cuisines, oceanfront restaurant Benno pleases those seeking fusion food (and a tantalizing view with it).
Taziry Ecovillages Siwa (Siwa, Egypt)
4 Stars | Website | Borg El Arab International Airport, Alexandria
30 | 1 swimming pool; Breakfast included; Bar | 1
Fatnas Island; Temple of Amun; Shali Fortress; Cleopatra Spring
Placed below Siwa’s Red Mountain, Taziry Ecovillages Siwa is a unique eco-conscious stay amongst Egypt’s Great Sand Sea. Constructed with traditional Siwan-style design methods, the 30 guestrooms comprise mud brick walls and palm tree ceilings, which function as a natural air conditioning system to cool spaces down. Days are meant to be spent by the outdoor swimming pool admiring the view of the famous White Mountain in the distance, while nights call for stargazing from desert-facing windows and candle-lit rooms.
Six Senses Shaharut (Negev Desert, Israel)
5 Stars | Website | Ovda International Airport
60 | 1 swimming pool; Spa; Bar | 3
Tzukei Shayarot Nature Reserve; Tzukei Shayarot Nature Reserve; Timna
Situated in Israel’s arid Negev Desert, Six Senses Shaharut blends in with its environs: a palette of sand-dust, beige, whites, and creams cohesively seep into one another across the hotel’s grounds and corridors, which seems like an oasis that spontaneously rises from untrodden earth. The 60-key spa feels bible-esque: Israeli relics, Bedouin handcrafts, cacti, and palms occupy soothing-toned rooms. Luxuriates should book the Panorama Pool Villa, which boasts a private plunge pool and firepit for chilling desert nights. In true Six Senses fashion, the spa reigns supreme: massages, facials, wraps, and holistic healings come to fruition via the Chinese medicine pundits, shamans, naturopathic practitioners, and aura readers. Treatments use local products suffusing herbs, olive oil, and camel milk, among other elixirs (you know we love local touches here at HAP).
Korakia Pensione (Palm Springs, CA)
4 Stars | Website | Palm Springs Intl. Airport
28 | 1 swimming pool; Spa; Free WiFi | 1
San Jacinto Mountain; Desert Highland Park; Agua Caliente Park
Only two hours by car from San Diego and Los Angeles, Korakia Pensione is a Palm Springs boutique hotel comprising a handful of abodes displaying various architectural styles: a 1924-built Moroccan-style villa, Mediterranean villa, and Spanish-adobe house conjoin here. A large chunk of guestrooms ooze privacy, hiding and reappearing throughout the gardens and courtyards that make up the grounds. Afternoon Moroccan tea refreshes guests, and complimentary yoga plus meditation classes encourage “California calm.”
Al Maha, a Luxury Collection Desert Resort & Spa, Dubai (United Arab Emirates)
5 Stars | Website | Dubai Intl. Airport
42 | 1 swimming pool; Fitness center; Free WiFi | 1
Platinum Heritage Desert Camp; Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve; Al Madam – Buried “Ghost” Village
Just 45 minutes from Dubai, Al Maha is a secluded, luxe glamping oasis situated amidst the palm groves and colossal dunes of the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve. With 42 tented Bedouin-style suites freckling a slice of UAE desert-scape, the five-star accommodations boast access to swimming pools, revived antiques, and ubiquitous Arabian-esque décor. For the ride of your life, elect to do a camel trek at golden hour (desert sunsets are the best sunsets — and even better when riding a camel).
The Monkey Tree (Palm Springs, California)
4 Stars | Website | Palm Springs Intl. Airport
16 | 1 swimming pool; Free WiFi; Spa | 1
Palm Springs Art Museum; Moorten Botanical Garden; Indian Canyons
Nestled at the foot of the San Jacinto Mountains in Palm Springs, The Monkey Tree is a newly remodeled desert hotel that evokes a hip, midcentury-modern feel. Tasteful pops of color dot the 16-key resort, from the bedroom furnishings to the outdoor chaise lounge chairs. Centered around a beautiful turquoise pool, guests can easily step out of their suites to rest under retro, green-stiped umbrellas, or float in the water with one of the provided floaties.
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