It had been a busy, stressful week.
My companion and I had just returned from an outdoor adventure in the Southern California mountains near Big Bear followed by the requisite futile dash to get caught up at work. While we enjoy our outdoor excursions, we were both in desperate need of some time together that didn’t involve hiking ten miles and sleeping in a tent. We found the perfect remedy with a romantic fall getaway to the Miramonte Indian Wells Resort & Spa in Indian Wells.
The main pool and gathering areas at Miramonte Indian Wells Resort & Spa
Located 15 miles south of Palm Springs in Southern California, Indian Wells is less than two hours by car from Los Angeles on a good day, but the reward is well worth the drive. For those arriving by air, Palm Springs International Airport is just minutes away. Indian Wells is best known to many as home to the Indian Wells Masters tennis tournament and the Desert Classic pro-am golf tournament where Bill Murray delights crowds with his antics. The community doesn’t dazzle with the glitz and glamour of Palm Springs but instead offers a more refined and relaxed atmosphere perfect for a secluded romantic getaway. Temperatures in the summer regularly soar well into the triple digits, but the area enjoys fall temperatures in the low 70s, making for an appealing escape from colder, less hospitable climes.
The citrus grove and herb and spice garden
Miramonte Indian Wells Resort & Spa has 215 guestrooms and villas tucked away on 11 acres, but there is an intimate feeling to the overall layout and well-manicured landscaping. Pathways weave amid lush green lawns and flowering desert plants, shaded by citrus and olive trees. There are bocce courts, an herb and spice garden, and plenty of hidden sitting areas for evening conversations around a fire.
A junior king suite with patio overlooking the well-manicured grounds
Our second-floor suite was spacious, easily doubling the footprint of most hotel rooms I’ve stayed in over the years. The bathroom featured a glass-enclosed rainfall shower perfect for two, and the room had a Juliet balcony overlooking the citrus grove and vibrantly colored flower beds. Each morning, we’d open the sliding glass door and let the scent of the ripening fruit waft into our room as we lay in bed sipping our juice and coffee.
The Mediterranean-inspired Citrus & Palm Restaurant
After settling into our room, we enjoyed some quiet time together before freshening up and heading down to the resort’s Citrus & Palm restaurant. The low-key, simple setting belied the Mediterranean delights on the menu. Both the Citrus & Palm and the Tavern Bar in the lobby shared a respectable wine and spirits list, along with a sampling of local craft brews, although we opted to avoid alcohol for this trip.
The appetizers were amazing. The assorted Mediterranean dips with hummus, baba ghanoush, spicy feta crumbles, and warmed pita slices, and the grilled lamb lollipops with a yogurt-mint sauce were our hands-down favorites. For entrees, I loved the Mediterranean chicken, which featured a bone-in thigh and drumstick with a crispy skin on a bed of chorizo rice pilaf, all drizzled with a surprisingly delicate red pepper sauce. My companion devoured the bone-in pork chop, which was massive, juicy, and perfectly seared and set in a sea of a decadently savory romesco sauce.
After dinner, we took a slow stroll through the grounds back to our room. The evening was young but quiet, disturbed only by gentle conversations, noisy cicadas, and trees rustling in the light desert breeze. It was the perfect romantic start to the rest of our evening.
After breakfast and some time alone in the room the following morning, we hit the adequately appointed gym for a quick workout. The gym was clean and relatively spacious, with multiple treadmills, stationary bikes, and adjustable benches, a full set of dumbbells, and plenty of space and mats for stretching, yoga, and more. Rather than a quick workout, we ended up doing a full hour of cardio plus some light lifting.
The award-winning Well Spa
Fortuitously for us, up next was a visit to the resort’s award-winning Well Spa. We both opted for the Raindrop Therapy treatment which included a gentle back massage, aromatherapy, essential oils, and warm compresses. Kudos to masseuses Joanna and Joshua for their expert muscle manipulations. Thoroughly de-stressed and relaxed, we enjoyed the next hour in the spa’s private pool and jacuzzi before stripping down in the locker room’s eucalyptus and citrus-scented steam room.
Sunset at the Miramonte Indian Wells Resort & Spa
After a light but invigorating shared lunch of a date fruit smoothie and the Miramonte acai & chia bowl (both are an absolute must), we whiled away the rest of the afternoon at the resort’s two pools open to all guests. As I floated aimlessly in the kid-friendly main pool just outside the lobby, I was struck at how the layout and Spanish revival architecture of the surrounding buildings gave the appearance of an idyllic seaside village. It was not hard to imagine myself lounging poolside in Puerto Vallarta or even Positano rather than at a Southern California desert resort. Miramonte’s second “adults-only” pool was far smaller and more intimate, tucked further away from the main resort areas behind a natural fence of flowering bougainvillea. While the main pool with its poolside bar had a livelier atmosphere, the kidney-shaped “quiet” pool and oversized jacuzzi became our instant favorite with its intimate oasis just right for swimming, sunning, and reading in the shade.
The challening Players Course at the adjacent Indian Wells Golf Resort
For the more sporting-minded looking to hit the links, the Miramonte Indian Wells Resort & Spa is steps away from the Indian Wells Golf Resort with its famed Players Course and Clive Clark’s Celebrity Course. There’s also a putting course perfect for fun with friends and even younger family members. Guests of the Miramonte Indian Wells Resort & Spa receive special discounts and privileges, and the weather during our visit was perfect for 18 holes or more.
Our original plans called for us to head into town for dinner on our second evening, either visiting Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse or L.G.’s Steakhouse, both of which are a very short drive from the resort. But we were so relaxed and detached from the outside world, we had no desire to leave or go anywhere. We had everything we needed or desired for a final romantic evening together at the Miramonte.