Loc: Long Island, N.Y.
My wife and I had wanted to visit Desert Sun Resort for some time and we finally decided to just do it. We spent eight nights there at the end of April.
We flew non-stop, round trip from JFK to Palm Springs via jetBlue. The times of the flights were not very convenient for us, but we were happy that both directions were direct flights. Arriving there at 9:00 local time (feeling to us like midnight) made for a very long day. Similarly, the "red eye" coming home left at 10:00 p.m. and arrived at JFK at 6:00 a.m. --- again a very long day...This was our first encounter with jetBlue's new check-in procedure at JFK. It was a little confusing at first and there was not much direction, but we eventually figured it out. We are always annoyed about the long walk from the Air Train to the check in area for jetBlue. It's especially annoying arriving home after collecting your luggage and then having to make that trek to the AirTrain....
Nonetheless, we arrived in Palm Springs safely, picked up our rental car and had a 10 minute drive from the airport to the Hyatt, where we spent one night. The next day we were very pleased to find out our room was ready by 1:00 as they advertise check in is 4:00. Check in was a snap, we unloaded our luggage, inventoried what items we might need for the week and headed for the grocery store for provisions. By 3:00 we were settled and beginning to relax.
We rented a one bedroom condo unit, which was on the second floor. There was an outside staircase just for this unit that led to a very nice balcony overlooking the tennis court and main swimming pool. The unit was very clean and more than adequate for our needs for the week. The gated, covered parking area for this unit was conveniently located nearby. Housekeeping did a wonderful job each day refreshing the unit as though it were our first day all over again.
The grounds are kept meticulously. Well manicured lawns and beautiful and fragrant flowers and shrubbery. We've never seen so many hummingbirds!! They are so much fun to watch!
There are three swimming pools and two hot tubs, one under cover. We spent most of our time at the salt water pool. Not many people frequented this area so it was nice that there were only a few couples at a time there. It was very hot (100°+!!) so it was almost imperative to have an umbrella. The only downside of the salt water pool is that it is right next to a busy road, so there is a lot of road noise. We got used to it pretty quickly and it really was not an issue for us.
The cafe was open for lunch every day, but only Friday & Saturday for dinner and breakfast Saturday and Sunday. The food at the cafe was quite good. Although not especially gourmet, it was all freshly made and not pre-packaged and heated up. We prepared our own breakfast most days and had a late lunch or got lunch take out to keep for a light dinner later on. Downtown is only a few minutes away, with many restaurants to choose from. However, other than one night, we didn't feel ambitious enough to get dressed and drive to have dinner. There is also a free shuttle bus to downtown so you could do this trip without renting a car.
There is a tennis court and an exercise room. They also have a spa and water volleyball in the main pool. We only saw one volleyball game there the entire week. It seemed that most people were content to relax, read, converse and nap. I read 2-1/2 books myself!
All of the staff were very friendly and accommodating. At one point we were having difficulty with one of the TV's in our unit and three people came to see if they could help.
It's hard to find fault with anything at Desert Sun, although the minimum hours for the cafe (and thus the bar) could be considered an inconvenience. Some folks might find the grounds "confining" as the property is enclosed by an 8'+ high wall and most of the buildings are two story, with little room between them. There is not a lot of openness to the property. Also, check out is 11:00 am and although you can stay on property until 6:00 p.m., there aren't any convenient facilities to shower and change so we opted to leave the property and spend the day "downtown" while we awaited our 10:00 flight. This contributed to the very tiring long trip home.
We did enjoy a very relaxing time at a resort that I would describe as upscale yet low key. However the next time we go it will likely be at the beginning of, or tail end of, some other excursion to the west coast.