sojourneys


The Hyatt Regency Suites Palm Springs, California

When I select a hotel, a few factors are primary in my consideration: location, facilities (gym and pool), and value-for-money.  The Hyatt Regency Suites Palm Springs acquits itself admirably on all three accounts.

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Located in downtown Palm Springs, the hotel is a stroll away to the quaint, eclectic collection of shops–from art galleries (there seem to be so many in Palm Springs!) to cafes to salons that line North Palm Canyon Drive as well as adjacent arterial roads–and a short drive to nearby attractions such as the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway (a two and 1/2-mile ascent to the peak of Mount San Jacinto State Park and Wilderness abroad the world’s largest rotating tramcars) and the Desert Hills Premium Outlets, a veritable capital of consumption, in neighboring Cabazon.

Rooms-wise, this is an all suites hotel, and upon check-in, I was upgraded to a premier king room, for which I was glad, because the living area windows of the regular rooms of the atrium lobby hotel face the corridor.  The room was spacious with a separate living and sleeping areas separated by a walkway and the bathroom.  There is a 42″ flat screen TV in both the living and bed rooms.  Bathroom amenities feature the standard White Ginger collection from Portico Spa, although it may be time for Hyatt to update the toiletries to something more contemporary.  The balcony was spacious with a splendid view of the surrounding hills and golf course.

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A well-equipped gym greets fitness fiends.  There are elliptical trainers, treadmills, and weight resistance machines that target some of the core muscles, as well as free weights in the form of dumbbells.  The outdoor pool was heated to room temperature when I was there during the Christmas holidays, making it quite inviting.

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The only downside of the hotel is that it is fairly old.  The decor is starting to look dated and stuffy, and the bathroom especially could do with better lighting.  The need for an update aside, the staff are friendly and efficient, and the well-appointed and fairly comprehensive amenities combine to make guests feel welcome and comfortable.  And at US$102 a night (including taxes) during the December season, I thought it was value-for-money.  For Hyatt Gold Passport Platinum members, parking, Internet, and in-room bottled water charges are waived.

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AVIA Long Beach, California
December 30, 2011, 3:29 pm
Filed under: California, hotels, Hyatt | Tags: , , , , , , ,

AVIA Long Beach, now part of the Hyatt stable of hotels, enjoys a strategic location astride downtown Long Beach on one side and mere strides away to The Pike at Rainbow Harbor and the Long Beach Convention and Entertainment Center on the other.

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The excellent location aside, during my check-in on Christmas eve, I found the front desk staff unfailingly polite and friendly, and I was upgraded to a Grand King guestroom, a contemporary, well-appointed facility whose highlights include a feature wall with swivel flat-panel TV that can swing to face the living or sleeping areaa, and a spacious white marble bathroom displaying toiletries from the bamboo creme collection of Pasadena-based Lather.

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Although the property has a modest collection of 138 rooms, the sun-lit lobby that adjoins the all-day diner (AVIA Kitchen) and bar (AVIA Lounge) invites in plenty of natural light that expands its confines.  The fitness facility, comprising only five cardio machines and a set of dumbbells, is disappointingly small.  The rooftop pool however boasts delightful views of The Pike as well as the surrounding business area, including the historical Queen Mary–a luxury ocean voyager-turned WWII troopship-turned floating hotel.

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Altogether, I found my stay very agreeable, and certainly look forward to being welcomed back by the hospitable staff and to be able to further explore the beautiful City of Long Beach.