PALM SPRINGS, let it be known, is open all year long. There is no "closed" sign on Highway 111, as you pull of the 10 Freeway, ever, and it matters not what the calendar says. But right around the end of wintertime, and the beginning of spring, the resort city truly begins to flower, much like an ocotillo blossom or prickly pear bud. Sitting-by-the-pool season is well and truly kicking in, the big festivals, from Modernism Week in February to the music festivals of April, are drawing locals as well as visitors from afar, and the night is shaking off a bit of its lunar-like desert chill. It's the ideal time for other things to flower, too, like new stay-over properties that have longtime roots in the city. The 18 villas at 339 South Belardo Road have those roots, thanks to the fact that the property can date its start back to 1933. As with desert flowers, though, hotels can bloom anew, which is just what's happened with the recently debuted La Serena Villas.
"THE SECLUDED PRIVATE VILLAS"... were re-imagined by architect May Sung and designed by Avenue Interior Designs, and they come with a flurry of tony details, from claw-footed tubs to fire pits located on the private patios. The acre-big spread also boasts a pool, and Whispers Spa, and is a short walk down to restaurant- and shop-plentiful Palm Canyon Drive. Yes, we said "down to," indicating that La Serena Villas is located where the city starts to roll up towards the San Jacintos. That means you'll be fairly mountain-close, a great place to be, come evening, when you want to hang out on your patio and enjoy that spring-crisp twilight that the desert does so well. Prices, details, and a peek inside the sizable villas? That's all flowering, ocotillo-style, right over here.