La Maison Hotel in Palm Springs, Calif., is number one on Trip Advisor’s 2014 Traveler’s Choice award list of the top 25 small hotels in the U.S.
In addition, La Maison earned the number five rating for service and the number 12 rating for romance.
These new accolades reinforce what discerning travelers have known since the 13-room boutique hotel opened in 2012 — La Maison is a special place.
Although the surrounding landscape is unmistakably desert, the look and feel of La Maison is reminiscent of the South of France.
Any confusion regarding geography on the part of first-time guests is understandable, for husband-and-wife owners Cornelia Schuster and Richard Slosky carefully cultivate the perception of a charming Mediterranean hideaway.
All the rooms overlook a lush garden courtyard accented with gently burbling fountains, the centerpiece 40-foot heated swimming pool and a heated Jacuzzi. Chaises longues draped with towels line the pool. An ivy-bedecked trellis covers the walkway. Artistic touches such as wall pots filled with dried lavender branches further enhance the French flavor. The grounds’ exterior walls, fashioned from both stone and dense greenery, and the locked entrance door ensure privacy.
Inside the rooms, the décor features a neutral palate, tasteful furniture and imported linens. The bathroom amenities are from the French company L’Occitane en Provence. A fragrant sachet of dried lavender on the bed is a take-home gift.
La Maison is designed for rest, relaxation and rejuvenation, and places a high premium on hospitality and guest services. The difference is apparent at check in, or would be if La Maison had a formal check-in procedure. Instead of the standard hotel practice of presenting forms to fill out and requesting credit cards to make imprints, the owners warmly welcome new arrivals at the front door with room keys in hand and personally guided tours.
They point out the nook where they serve a complimentary continental breakfast buffet, highlighted with Schuster’s fresh-baked scones, and where Slosky, the barista, brews espressos and cappuccinos. At 5:00 p.m., they pour complimentary wine in the same space. Those intent on preparing a meal can buy provisions at the nearby grocery store and fire up La Maison’s outdoor gas grill.
The number one small hotel, indeed.
When you go
La Maison Hotel is located at 1600 East Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs, CA, 92264. Phone is 760-325-1600. Email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Click here for other articles by Mary Gilbert. You also can read her travel stories on her blog, The Roads Traveled, at theroadstraveled.com.