Things to Do: Whitewater Preserve

A short drive from the Aqua Soleil Hotel and Mineral Water Spa is another natural wonder called the Whitewater Preserve. This 2,851 acre preserve is a great place to hike and become one with nature. I wish I could say that fishing is part of the experience, because every time I look at all the trout in the ponds at Whitewater preserve, I get hungry.

Whitewater Preserve Trout Pond
Whitewater Preserve Trout Pond

To get there from our hotel, travel West on I-10 and take the Haugen/Leaman exit. Don’t stop at the river by the freeway. This particular spot isn’t the main attraction, and can be a bit dangerous if the water is flowing rapidly. Drive just 4 miles up Whitewater Canyon Road to the Preserve. There you will find a nicely kept picnic area where you can day camp, hike or soak in the nice swimmin’ hole.
There are several hiking trails from easy to moderate, and some have river access. There are maps and trail information provided by the rangers and on The Wildlands Conservancy website. The surrounding mountains and green flora make a wonderful frame for this fantastic nature spot in our valley.
Whitewater Preserve Ranger Station and Visitor Facility
Whitewater Preserve Ranger Station and Visitor Facility

I mentioned already how much I enjoy the trout ponds. There are 3 of them connected by a system of waterfalls. The trout are perfect “pan size!” But don’t try to net them or fish here, as catching the fish isn’t allowed. At various times of the year, the Preserve also sponsors guided nature walks and hikes, a docent-led catch and release fishing program, and other events at different times of the year, information about which can found on their website.
Address to the Preserve’s entrance and parking area:
9160 Whitewater Canyon Road
Whitewater, CA 92282
Map from the hotel:

Phone number: 760-325-7222
Website: The Wildlands Conservancy – Whitewater Preserve

Article and Photos by Mike Bennett


Hike the San Andreas Fault

The Coachella Valley Preserve is a popular destination for our guests who want to go on an interesting yet moderate hike. It’s easy to get to from the Aqua Soleil Hotel and Mineral Water Spa. Make a left on Palm Drive, left on Dillon Road, then right on 1000 Palms Canyon Trail. The preserve will be on your right-hand side. There is a small parking lot near the big groups of palm trees. This area is right on top of the biggest fault line in California, the one they’re always warning us about.
The McCallum trail takes you along the San Andreas Fault to a lush palm oasis which has been a home to pupfish and a strange variety of tiny shellfish. One of the friendly docents told me that the pupfish have been relocated to Borrego Springs while they try to trap and remove all of the crawdads in the pond. There are several traps you can see in the clear water. Apparently, the crawdads were eating the pupfish and don’t belong there.

Palm Oasis at the Coachella Valley Preserve
Oasis at the Coachella Valley Preserve

The little benches by the pond make a great spot to have a sack lunch or sit and talk with your hiking buddy. Remember to bring plenty of water because the hike to this spot is two to three miles. It starts with wooden boardwalks laid into the swamp and turns into a sandy walkway. The trails are clearly marked and you can see the palm oasis for most of the hike, so you shouldn’t have to worry about getting lost. There are also little signs indicating the local flora and fauna species.
To learn more please go to their website.
If you need driving directions printed out, please see one of our friendly Front Desk Agents.
Coachella Valley Preserve
Thousand Palms Canyon Rd
Desert Hot Springs, CA 92241

Palm Oasis at the Coachella Valley Preserve
Palm Oasis at the Coachella Valley Preserve

Article and Pictures by Mike Bennett



The Integratron


Enjoy a Sound Bath

The Integratron offers a fantastic addition to your relaxing stay at the Aqua Soleil Hotel and Mineral Water Spa. It’s only forty-minutes from the hotel and well worth the drive, even at today’s gas prices.
This U.F.O. Looking dome was built in the early 1950s. It’s one of the most acoustically sound structures in the world, made of wood using no nails. The wild stories about George Van Tassel, the man who built this machine, and what he built it to do, are pretty incredible to say the least. Ol’ George claimed he got the blueprints from space aliens from Venus. Did I mention he was a controversial U.F.O. advocate?
Before you go thinking he was some kind of nut, you should know he was an aeronautical engineer for Lockheed Douglas and worked with Hughes Aircraft Company as well. In 1978 George died mysteriously and all of his work vanished before they could turn the thing on. Yes, it was supposed to turn on! Van Tassel said it could be used for time travel and as an anti-gravity Machine, but most of all a “Rejuvenation station.” And that’s what they use it for today.
If you haven’t heard, sound baths are the latest form of relaxation therapy to hit some of the spas in the Coachella Valley. It’s actually an ancient form of Chakra meditation. Inside the acoustically sound Integratron dome, they play a series of “quartz crystal singing bowls” and the feeling is absolutely indescribable. Sixty minutes of pure aural bliss. At one point, it sounded like a U.F.O was landing. For twenty bucks, I was rejuvenated. I highly recommend it. Make sure to talk to the crew. They love to talk about the legends surrounding this highly magnetic spot on the Earth and the mysteries of Van Tassel’s creation.

Under the floor of the dome.
Under the dome floor.

Looking up at the very top-center of Integratron dome.
Looking up at the very top-center of the Integratron dome.

While you’re there, take the dirt trail to Giant Rock and Quartz Mountain. I made it in my little clown car, but for ten bucks they will drive you there and tell you more crazy stories and history.
For more information go to If you would like directions printed out for you, please see one of our friendly front desk agents.
The Integratron
2477 Belfield Boulevard
Landers, California

Article and Pictures by Mike Bennett

Updating and Redecoration of Our Soleil Suites Are Underway

We are continuing our efforts to remodel and upgrade the hotel. We have completed the remodeling of two Soleil Suites, numbers 123 and 124. Along with the 6×10’ jetted mineral water pools that are offered in all of our Soleil Suites, these two redecorated suites offer other enhancements.

Our two Premium Soleil Suites now offer king-sized beds instead of the queen-sized beds offered in our Standard Soleil Suites. These comfy beds offer more room to stretch out for a great night’s rest.

In addition to the single flat-screen television that has always been included in our existing Soleil Suites, our two Premium Soleil Suites offer a flat-screen TV in the pool room, easily viewable from the private pool. There is also a third flat-screen television that has been added to accommodate the seating area in each of these suites. All three TVs are connected to a DVD player in the room to afford easy viewing of your selected content from all three key relaxation areas of the suite.

Behind each of the headboards in these suites are LED back-lights that can be adjusted in a variety of different colors from a remote control by the bed. Select the color that most suits your mood.

Both of these rooms also include recessed ceiling lights, controlled by dimmers, to further enhance the atmospheric mood of the rooms. Dimmer switches are located by the bed for easy control of the lights without having to get up and walk to a nearby wall.
A built-in service area offers a microwave and surface areas for the preparation of drinks and snacks. An area for hanging clothes has also been added in place of the armoires offered in our Standard Soleil Suites.

These two suites represent prototypes of what is planned for the upgrade of all of our Soleil Suites throughout the rest of this year. Our Premium Soleil Suites will eventually replace our Standard Soleil Suites. If you prefer to stay in one of our Premium Soleil Suites instead of a Standard Soleil Suite, please be sure to specify that when booking your reservation with the Front Desk. Shortly, we will be offering a way to book our Premium Soleil Suites online, at which time we’ll update this blog post with a ‘book now’ button, along with the inclusion of a new page on our website to include information about our new Premium Soleil Suites.

Update- Premium Soleil Suites can now be booked online: Book Premium Soleil Suite

Tour de Palm Springs Bicycle Ride Event

The Tour de Palm Springs is an annual bicycle race birthed out of an event organized by Tim Esser in January 1998 called Spokes for Different Folks. The bike event allowed cyclists to ride 5, 15, 25 and 50-mile routes. About 400 cyclists participated in that event that raised $20,000 for area Coachella Valley charities.

Tim and his mother Fran formed a non-profit organization called CVSPIN and the first Tour de Palm Springs was held in 1999, with 1,000 riders participating. A 100-mile ride was also added.

Since this first ride in 1999, the Tour de Palm Springs has been held every year and has continued to increase its ridership. In 2012, a total of $275,000 was dispersed among 142 local charities in the Coachella Valley.

The next event is scheduled to take place on February 8, 2014. CVSPIN has a goal of attracting 10,000 riders to this upcoming event. Ride routes range from 1 mile up to 100 miles. Registration will take place on North Palm Canyon in Palm Springs, one block north of Tahquitz Canyon Way, not far from the Forever Marilyn statue. If you are interested in participating, more information can be found at the official Tour de Palm Springs website.

We have rooms available and are located about 10 miles from the ride’s registration location.

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The Unique Beauty of Joshua Tree National Park

About 32 miles from the Aqua Soleil Hotel and Mineral Water Spa is Joshua Tree National Park. This 800,000 acre park is a converging point of two deserts and their unique ecosystems, the lower Colorado Desert and the higher Mojave Desert.
The lower, Eastern half of the park is below 3,000 feet and is known as the Colorado Desert. It is part of the Sonoran Desert and home to the Creosote bush, which flourishes there. Spidery ocotillo and cholla cactus can also be found here.
The Mojave Desert occupies the higher, wetter and slightly cooler western half of the park. It is home to the Joshua tree, given its name, according to legend, by Mormon pioneers who considered the limbs of the Joshua tree to be reminiscent of the outstretched arms of Joshua leading them to the Promised Land.
The tallest Joshua tree in the park is in the Queen Valley forest. It stands over 40 feet high and is estimated be over 100 years old. Joshua trees do not have growth rings, like most trees, therefore, determine age accurately can be difficult. Dividing the height by the average annual growth rate of one-half inch will give you a rough estimation of the tree’s age.
In contrast to the arid surroundings of the park, there are a few areas where water exists close enough to the surface where five fan oases are found. Of the 158 desert fan palm oases in North America, five are in Joshua Tree National Park.

The park encompasses some of the most interesting geologic displays found in California’s deserts. Rugged mountains of twisted rock and exposed granite monoliths testify to the tremendous earth forces that shaped and formed this land. Arroyos, playas, alluvial fans, bajadas, pediments, desert varnish, granites, aplite, and gneiss interact to form a giant mosaic of immense beauty and complexity.1
The rock formations in Joshua Tree National Park take on fantastic shapes due to the intense earth forces that have shaped the land. Much of the park lies above at elevations above 4,000 feet where there are six unique mountain ranges. In the southwestern part of the park are the Little San Bernardino Mountains, in the center are the Pinto Mountains, and in the eastern part are the Eagle and Coxcomb Mountains. The northern and southern edges of the park are outlined by very steep rock rises, extending upward from the lower desert areas.
In the late 1800s, cattlemen came to the desert. They built dams to create water tanks. They were followed by miners who tunneled the earth in search of gold. They are gone now, but they left behind the Lost Horse and Desert Queen mines and the Keys Ranch. In the 1930s homesteaders came seeking free land and the chance to start new lives. Today many people come to the park’s 794,000 acres of open space seeking clear skies and clean air, and the peace and tranquility, the quietude and beauty, only deserts offer.2
The Aqua Soleil Hotel and Mineral Water Spa’s location in Desert Hot Springs, California offers a great vantage point to fan out across the Coachella Valley to see the many awesome sites that reside in our desert. Other sites of interest in the area can be found here. To book a reservation, please call 760-329-4481 or book online.
We are eager to serve all of your lodging needs, whether it be for business or pleasure. Escape to the Desert’s diverse destination– the Aqua Soleil Hotel and Mineral Water Spa.

1. “A Desert Park”:  National Park Service website, accessed November 6, 2013,
2. Photograph Found Online: Selak, Bill. “Joshua Tree Sunset.” 2007,

Redecorated Single Queen Room #201

Here at the Aqua Soleil Hotel and Mineral Water Spa, we are continuing our efforts to update and redecorate our hotel.  Pictured is one of our recently redecorated Single Queen rooms, # 201. It’s a whole new world of color at the Aqua Soleil Hotel and Mineral Water Spa.

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Redecorated Single Queen Rooms

Here at the Aqua Soleil and Mineral Water Spa in Desert Hot Springs, CA, we continue to update our property with new and innovative amenities and designs. Most recently, we have been working on the updating of our most popular room type, our Single Queen rooms. Each one is uniquely decorated with vibrant colors. A new world of color has come to the Aqua Soleil Hotel and Mineral Water Spa.