Lido Palms Resort & Spa – Desert Hot Springs, CA

The Lido Palms Resort & Spa is a Desert Hot Springs, California hotel that is not just one of the most luxurious spots in the Coachella Valley, but also one of the most unique. The property has a history as a nudist resort—a fact that is still reflected in the tasteful, retro-inspired decor and the fact that there are no doors on any of the bathrooms—that makes it unlike any other place you’ll ever stay.

The resort is also notable for its proximity to the Desert Health Medical Group and other cannabis-friendly businesses. While it’s now possible to visit Desert Hot Springs and not sample some of the local cannabis offerings, you’d be missing out on a big part of what makes this desert oasis so special if you don’t make time for at least one visit to one of the many local dispensaries (even if it’s just to get a glimpse of what life at a cannabis spa looks like).

The Lido Palms Resort & Spa: A Brief History

The Lido Palms Resort & Spa
The Lido Palms Resort & Spa

It may be hard to imagine that a place as elegant and luxurious as the Lido Palms Resort & Spa could have ever been anything other than a five-star hotel, but it’s true. The property was originally erected in the late 1930s as a nudist resort known as the Desert Sun Club.

The resort was built by Leonard E. Richards, who had gotten the idea to build such a place from his experiences at similar resorts in Palm Springs and Los Angeles during the 1920s and ’30s. Richards hired architect Paul Revere Williams (who would later go on to design many of the homes featured in “The Truman Show”) to design the property, which was erected atop a hill with spectacular views of the Coachella Valley.

Over time, however, the nudist movement fell out of favor and Richards found himself with an underutilized property that he couldn’t afford to maintain. In 1970, he sold a portion of his land to Dr. Ted Forst (the physician who founded Desert Hot Springs’ cannabis enterprise), who would go on to build the first cannabis spa in America on that land.

Natural Hot Springs

The Lido Palms Resort & Spa
The Lido Palms Resort & Spa

This resort features everything you might want for a relaxing holiday, such as naturally heated mineral spring water that is piped from their own well into their pools, which have the best tasting drinking water in the desert, and the best tasting drinking water in the desert overall. A steam room, a hot mineral swimming pool, a thermal mineral tub, and a jetted sizzling mineral pool are all part of the amenities here.

From Nudist Colony to Cannabis-Friendly Desert Oasis

The Lido Palms Resort & Spa in Desert Hot Springs, California, has a unique history that makes it unlike any other resort in the world. The property was originally founded in 1936 as a nudist colony (a fact that is now reflected in many of the retro-mod touches on the property) and converted into a hotel and spa in the 1960s. It wasn’t until 2016, however, that cannabis became part of the business model.

Since 2016, the property has welcomed cannabis users looking for a friendly place to stay, relax, and recharge. There are no cannabis products on site—you’ll have to head out to one of one of the town’s dispensaries if you want to sample some of what Desert Hot Springs has to offer—but you can use cannabis products at Lido Palms if you wish.

While Lido Palms isn’t just a cannabis-friendly hotel; it’s also a luxury resort. The property has more than 50 rooms that are divided into suites and cabins (with all rooms having hot tubs that are tucked away in their own private outdoor courtyards). There is a full-service restaurant on site along with an outdoor pool, a spa and fitness center, and an outdoor fire pit where you can relax on chilly desert evenings.

Exploring the Lido Palms Resort & Spa

The Lido Palms Resort & Spa owns a fairly large piece of land on the eastern edge of Desert Hot Springs, California. The property includes a cannabis spa, the Desert Hot Springs Cannabis Club, a short distance away. There is also a small pool and spa area at the main hotel where guests can enjoy massages, body wraps, and other spa treatments.

The resort itself is not large enough to offer a massive selection of guest rooms—the property’s website lists just eight rooms in all—but each one is distinctly different. The smallest rooms are still quite spacious, and the largest even have full kitchens (perfect for those planning to stay for an extended period). All rooms include private bathrooms, with no doors at all—the walls are covered in retro tile, and the toilets are enclosed by opaque glass walls.

The retro-chic vibe extends to the whole property, which has a colorful retro-nudist vibe that you won’t find anywhere else. And while you’ll be able to get some amazing stoner food delivered right to your room if you want to stay put, it’s worth making time to try out some of the local cannabis offerings instead.

Lido Palms and Cannabis: A Perfect Pairing

There’s little doubt that the Lido Palms Resort & Spa is a cannabis-friendly resort, but it’s not just a place where you can get a room if you’re looking to smoke or vape in peace. The entire property has been outfitted with numerous amenities that make it the perfect place for anyone looking to experience cannabis in a luxurious setting.

The spa is outfitted with a number of cannabis-infused products that you can use, including a cannabis-infused sauna mist and body oil, as well as massage oils and creams. The fitness center has an “edibles bar” with many of the same products that are offered in the spa, as well as protein bars and other products.

The hotel offers complimentary snacks and drinks 24/7, and while they don’t feature any cannabis-infused products, they do have a very impressive wine list (with bottles starting at just $15).

Where to Stay

While the Lido Palms Resort & Spa is the only hotel in Desert Hot Springs that caters to the nudist lifestyle, it’s not the only hotel in town where you’ll find a cannabis-friendly vibe. Many of the hotels and B&Bs in town now allow you to smoke on your personal patio or porch, and many have menus of local cannabis products right at the front desk.

That being said, if you’re looking for a place to unwind after a day of visiting dispensaries or hiking in nearby Joshua Tree National Park, there are plenty of options that are cannabis-free. The Lido Palms Resort & Spa is just one of several hotels and B&Bs that are new on the scene, including several boutique spots with luxury rooms starting at $200 per night. There are also plenty of older hotels that range from basic to budget friendly, as well as RV parks and campgrounds for those who want to rough it on their desert vacation.

The Lido Palms Resort & Spa: The Rooms

If you’re looking for the perfect place to stay when you head to the desert to get a medical marijuana card, the Lido Palms Resort & Spa is an excellent choice. The property might be known for its nudist history, but it’s not just for naturists anymore; it also boasts one of the most luxurious accommodations in the entire Coachella Valley.

The ten rooms at the resort, which is situated in a quiet area, each include either two extra-long beds or one king bed, in addition to a selection of other conveniences. The mattresses on the beds are Tempur-Pedic, and an alternative to down comforters is used to cover them. In addition, there is brand new carpeting in the room, a bathroom that has a vanity, and air conditioning.

Take pleasure in the convenience of a kitchen that is fully supplied, in which you are free to prepare simple snacks or complex dinners at your own pace. After spending the day relaxing in the soothing hot mineral waters, you back to your hotel for a restful evening and morning.

While there are no doors on any of the bathrooms in any of the rooms, there is plenty of privacy in all of them (even the dorms). The bathrooms are open, but they are separated enough so that you never feel like you’re in a large communal area. Plus, they are all outfitted with beautiful tile and modern fixtures that give them a comfortable feel.

The private rooms start at around $100 per night and include both queen beds and private bathrooms. If you want to upgrade your room, you can opt for one of the suites or one of the VIP suites. The suites include two queen beds with private bathrooms plus a living room with a pull-out couch. These start at around $150 per night and can go as high as $200 per night on busy weekends. The VIP suites have all of this plus a Jacuzzi tub and start around $300 per night and go up from there.

The Lido Palms Resort & Spa: The Common Areas

One of the first things you’ll notice about the Lido Palms Resort & Spa is that it has no doors on any of its public bathrooms. While this may sound like an uncomfortable situation, it’s actually a fairly common sight at nudist resorts and is rarely an issue for anyone.

The main building at the Lido Palms is made up of two floors, with the lobby and a cafe occupying the bottom level and guest rooms taking up the upper floor. The second floor also features a hot tub, a sauna, and a swimming pool.

The swimming pool is one of the most tranquil spots in all of Desert Hot Springs. It’s surrounded by palm trees and there’s even a waterfall cascading into it. If you’re lucky, you might even get to overhear some of the other guests chatting about cannabis-infused spa treatments while you lounge by the pool.

The Lido Palms Spa

The Lido Palms Spa
The Lido Palms Spa

You don’t have to be a guest at the Lido Palms Resort & Spa to enjoy its spa. The facility also offers massage, body treatments, and other services to the general public. You can take advantage of these services while enjoying a stay in one of the hotel’s luxury villas, or you can even make arrangements to stay in one of the spa-suite accommodations if you’re looking for a truly unique experience.

A variety of treatments, including as massages, facials, and nail maintenance services, are available at the full-service spa located on the premises. The Aztec Clay Wrap, Mint Salt Scrub, and Green Detox Sea Salt Body Scrub are three examples of the many body treatments, wraps, and scalp treatments that are available.

The Lido Palms Spa carries the full line of natural and organic skin care products available from The Body Deli. These items are produced on a consistent basis in relatively modest numbers. They only utilize products of the greatest possible quality in their brand-new clinic, which has three treatment rooms.

The spa at the Lido Palms is a truly special place that offers treatments that incorporate cannabis-infused products (including CBD oil) as well as CBD-infused massages for guests who want more than just a standard rubdown.

The resort also offers a full menu of other recreational activities, from playing tennis on one of the resort’s three clay courts to soaking in the outdoor mineral pool and hot tub (which uses water sourced from natural hot springs) after a long day of exploring the town and visiting local dispensaries.

Getting to the Lido Palms Resort & Spa

As noted above, the Lido Palms Resort & Spa is located in Desert Hot Springs, California, which lies about an hour and a half drive southeast of Los Angeles and about three hours southeast of San Francisco. The city sits at the foot of the San Jacinto Mountains, which makes for an attractive setting.

If you’re flying in and you’re not renting a car (which I don’t recommend), your best bet is to take a taxi from the Palm Springs International Airport. The drive is about three hours, so it’s not worth it to rent a car unless you plan on heading out of town to explore some of the other sights in the area.

Otherwise, you can book a room at the Lido Palms Resort & Spa and make a day trip out of it by taking advantage of some of the cannabis-friendly offerings in town—including at least one visit to a local dispensary and possibly also a massage or another spa treatment—before returning for some time at the pool or enjoying dinner at one of the hotel’s restaurants.

Bottom line

The Lido Palms Resort & Spa – Desert Hot Springs, CA is an ideal destination for anyone looking to get away and relax in a tranquil setting. This luxurious resort offers a wide array of amenities and activities, from relaxing spa treatments to invigorating outdoor activities.

With its picturesque views, world-class cuisine, and luxurious accommodations, the Lido Palms Resort & Spa is an oasis for anyone looking for a truly unique getaway. Whether you’re looking for a romantic retreat or a family vacation, this resort has something for everyone. From the stunning surroundings to the attentive service, the Lido Palms Resort & Spa is sure to provide an unforgettable experience that you’ll never forget.

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Local information

Address: 12801 Tamar Dr, Desert Hot Springs, California 92240
GPS: 33.955695,-116.488356
Phone: 760-329-6033
Season: Year-round