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5 Palm Springs
If you thought Palm Springs' celebrity hotspots were the city's best-kept secret, you've never been privy to its collection of boutique hotels. On a recent visit, I happily discovered a portfolio that runs the gamut of kitschy and fun to chic and elite.
The Chase Hotel
Remember those run-down motels your mom and dad would insist on frequenting during family road trips because they came with their own kitchenette? Well, The Chase is the hotel you'll wish they knew about. Built in the 1940s, it's a beautifully updated midcentury boutique hotel where the rooms are sunny, spacious and come with a private balcony for admiring the mountain vistas at sunset. Tropical vegetation that surrounds the saline pool makes you feel like you're at a far-off retreat but you're actually just a stone's throw from shopping, dining and entertainment. And, yes, you can tell Mom and Dad that most rooms come with a kitchenette.
Starting rate: $79 per night