by Michael J. Shapiro | March 14, 2018
Hotel Paseo, a Marriott Autograph Collection property, opened for business this week in Palm Desert, Calif. The first new-build luxury hotel to open in 30 years in this Coachella Valley city, the boutique 150-room property sits on El Paseo, known as the "Rodeo Drive of the Desert." 
 
"From the midcentury modern design elements to the hotel's diverse amenities, we're committed to creating an experience unlike any other in the desert," noted developer Robert Leach. Among those elements are a specialty suite in a restored 1950 Airstream trailer, unique California-themed art and a custom-designed glass-blown chandelier by master artisan Jesus Garcia in the lobby.
 
The guest rooms offer a relaxing palette of soft gray, white and light-blue tones, punctuated by colorful modern art by local artists. Barn doors open to spa-inspired luxury bathrooms in each room. Three spa-adjacent options, known as Oasis guest rooms, provide freestanding oval-shaped soaking tubs. Most rooms have private balconies that look out onto the San Jacinto Mountains and valley palms. 
 
The hotel also offers nine specialty suites, among them the 1950 Airstream on the Backyard Lawn, which is outfitted with stainless steel appliances, a reclaimed black walnut bar and a porch with lounge chairs. The Billiards Suite has a pool table, a wet bar, a lounge area and a Shinola Runwell designer turntable, complete with a collection of old and new vinyl to play on it. For the more business-minded, the Grand Desert Suite includes a motorized, expandable boardroom table. 
 
The Backyard Lawn is home to a pool and hot tub with three private cabanas, a poolside cabana bar called Lemondrop and an outdoor stage for live musical performances. A putting green, cornhole game and shuffleboard are provided in the lobby lounge.
 
The Spa Laié will open for business in April with seven treatment rooms. The LifeFitness gym has premium workout equipment, and complimentary bicycles and fitness classes also are available. 
 
Among the flexible event spaces are the 3,200-square-foot Grand Paseo Ballroom, which can be divided into two rooms, and the adjacent 2,000-square-foot Event Lawn. The Palm Boardroom can fit up to 20 meeting participants, and includes a 75-inch TV and a view of the Backyard Lawn.
 
The on-site AC3 Restaurant + Bar brings together three restauranteurs already well-known in the desert -- Andrew and Juliana Copley, from Copley's on Palm Canyon, as well as Tony Marchese of Trio. The "New American" all-day restaurant also does event catering, room service and a pool-bar menu. The restaurant is easily configured for private-event setups, with communal tables, a formal dining area surrounded by comfortable banquettes, a semiprivate space and a large patio with a fire pit.