The Good Life Awaits at Descanso Resort - Visit Palm Springs tag-img

The Good Life Awaits at Descanso Resort

DESCANSO_poolside

By Kevin Perry

The Descanso Resort is a newly refurbished, completely reimagined men’s resort in Palm Springs. Here, the lush garden blooms, the pool water sparkles, and more than one guest has been known to extend his stay.

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Meet the General Manager, Kent Taylor

Here’s an understatement: Kent Taylor is a busy fella. His day begins before the sun graces the resorts he diligently oversees, and it doesn’t end until he meets (exceeds) every last need of the guests he welcomes so warmly. In other words, Kent’s tireless work is all in the name of hospitality… and he loves every hectic minute of it.

Kent Taylor

“Running a gay hotel is incredibly rewarding,” he declares. “I wouldn’t change a thing.” Kent speaks from a place of authenticity and authority. After all, he has successfully shepherded the Santiago into the pantheon of great clothing optional getaways in Palm Springs, and now he’s doing it all over again.

Descanso Resort is open for business and bustling with pleasure.

“We have very carefully curated the same list of amenities as Santiago,” explains Kent. “One of the biggest challenges we were getting over there were our guests’ were not being able to get in.  The property is so busy. When this property was purchased, and the owners definitely looked long and hard to find a property that had a similar energy and dynamics to Santiago, so that our guests would come over here and it would make sense to them. The amenity list is everything that our Santiago guests would expect: complimentary breakfast; lunch included; heated pool; beautiful, gorgeous, linens; beautiful towels, all of the details that they have come to know.”

Descanso Resort is Unique

While the Santiago is a joyful jumping off point for the sake of inspiration, Descanso has its own unique soul.

“We’re definitely listening to guests’ feedback, which is creating changes almost every day. We’re really allowing the property to find its own voice, and we’re just kind of sitting back a little bit and listening and letting the property tell us.  I know that sounds really weird, but they do tell you, the property lets you know what it needs.  That’s kind of what we’re at the stage of the game. It’s going to be a few months before it really comes into its own being, but we’re here trying to help that and encourage that as much as possible.”

Descanso Resort pool

It may be young, but Descanso has already discovered one guiding principle: size matters.

“Because this hotel is a smaller hotel,” Kent continues, “we want to have it be a little more special, a little more boutique, a little more extra. We’re also looking very carefully at how do we increase the quality of the stay and the experience of the stay compared to Santiago, because we’re a little more intimate. We’re a little more hands-on with a smaller property.”

Punctuating his point, Kent reiterates, “The experience that we’re trying to create is more intimate, more special, higher-end.”

A Vibrant History

And while the Descanso philosophy is firmly focused on the future, it is also rooted in the past. The property has a vibrant history that cements its importance in the LGBTQ+ culture of Palm Springs.

“It used to be a gay hotel called East Canyon,” Kent narrates. “For many, many years, it was very well known and successful. Then it sold to another couple who changed the name to Uptown Hotel. And when they changed the name, they also made it an all-inclusive property.” As the composition of the clientele shifted, so did the vibe.

“We were very lucky when we purchased the property,” Kent recounts, “the owners still had the email list of the East Canyon Hotel, and they asked us if we wanted it, which of course we said yes. We sent them all an email saying, ‘we’re very excited to tell you we’re back on track.’ And the response has been incredible!”

Descanso Resort pool & seating

Kent beams as he reports how the good ol’ days are new again at Descanso.

“I’ve absolutely had a lot of previous East Canyon guests who are very excited to hear that it is returning back to being a men’s property.”

Kent strives to extend this sense of belonging to a new generation of LGBTQ+ travelers, lovers and dreamers at Descanso.

“What people don’t realize is that there’s something really special about being at a property with a bunch of gay men, and there’s a bonding thing that happens. I’ve watched people make friends for life floating around that pool.” “When I was at Santiago,” he reminisces, “I had a couple in, and they met in the pool, married, and have been together for 10 years.”

So, what are you waiting for? Dive in – the water’s wonderful, and so is the space.

Descanso Resort

288 E Camino Monte Vista
760-320-1928

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