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“Rooms nice, but common areas are gross” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Marriott's Shadow Ridge

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Marriott's Shadow Ridge
3.5 of 5 Resort   |   9003 Shadow Ridge Rd, Palm Desert, CA 92211   |  
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Ranked #12 of 22 Hotels in Palm Desert
1 review
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Rooms nice, but common areas are gross”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 20, 2014

I seldom feel the need to write a review because in general most places we stay are pretty nice and the reviews already reflect this, but I think that management at this resort needs to hear from more folks who found the resort to be far from a typical MVC experience. As a Marriott Vacation Club owner, I was very disappointed with our stay. While the unit itself was generally nice and fairly well- appointed, there was room for improvement. One of the pillows on the sofa was so stained that it should have been replaced; it was disgusting. The bathroom had not been thoroughly cleaned either and was missing toiletries for the shower. The phone messaging system did not operate properly and it seemed that we got messages but they came late. I wasn't thrilled to see our neighbor leaning over their balcony allowing a full view of our living area and master bedroom due to the design of the building and the angling of the balconies rather than just having them be straight, so privacy wouldn't be an issue.
I agree 100% with what Snowflake reported in an earlier review. The pool areas were filthy with litter from people drinking alcohol and leaving the cups and cans behind. The pools were murky and dirty with hair and bugs and it was pretty much wall to wall people. There was no one patrolling the pool area to ensure that the posted rules were being followed. One day at the pool, there was a giant float with 10-12 adolescent boys with long range squirt guns. They were intentional shooting at other guest including small children and the pool attendant walked by and said nothing. Where were their parents? At the other end of the pool drinking beers that they brought to the pool, (not from the pool bar) and chatting to each other oblivious to their children's obnoxious behavior.
Every other vacation club we've visited makes guests wear wrist bands to ensure that they are actual guests of the resort so that even if 20 people are packed into a unit that is supposed to sleep 8, not all 20 of those people are getting to the pool. The pool gates were never locked and the access gate into the resort was a joke. We stayed at the Newport Coast Villas earlier in the summer and although they do not have a gated entry into the resort, they do keep the pool gates locked and regularly check guest for wrist bands to keep non-legitimate guests from overcrowding the common facilities. I'm pretty sure that Newport has as many or more units and about an equivalent amount of common area and it does get crowded there too during the summer, but the management there does a much better job of patrolling to ensure that the customer experience is up to the Marriott standard.
Perhaps if you are travelling without children and can take advantage of the "quiet pool", then your experience might be different, but if you are a small family with children looking for a relaxing vacation, this is not the place, at least not during the spring or summer when the resort is overrun with large groups of as Snowflake put it, "ghetto" types.

  • Stayed August 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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721 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (210)
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English first
Orange County, CA
Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
71 helpful votes 71 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 19, 2014

Let me start by saying we own several SPG timeshares and DVC points and this is our 2nd experience at a Marriott. A year ago we were driving by and decided to see what the models looked like and we were impressed. We liked the fact that they were a true two bedrooms rather than being a lock off and that was a selling point for us with 1 small child and one on the way. We decided to exchange one of our SPG weeks for a 2 bedroom unit at the Enclaves and were very excited as the property seemed to have a lot of amenities that our family could enjoy.

Check in was very smooth and the young lady helping us was very polite and the process took no more than 5 minutes. We then drove across the street and found our room 4419. Upon arriving my wife looked around and immediately notice that there was old rice on the counter and it was sticky. Upon further inspection we noticed the bedspread in the room with two full or queen mattresses was visibly dirty as were the bathroom counters. We immediately called the front desk and requested they come clean the room. They opted to put us in a different room as the housekeepers had left for the day. We were now moved to 44XX which was just down the hall and actually faced the pool. The room looked clean and we brought our belongings in and began to unpack. While we were unpacking we let our 11 month old crawl around on the floor as he had been in a car seat for the 3+ hours it took us to get here in Friday traffic. Once we were settled we were going to venture out and grocery shop and picked up my son and looked at his feet and they were completely black. The top and bottoms were filthy from him spending 10 minutes on the floor (see attached photos). Again frustrated I stopped by the front desk to show the manager the pictures that I had taken. She was very apologetic and said she would credit my $25 for the inconvenience as well as send someone to clean the floors the following morning.

I am not going to get into every detail of the following two days but the first night really set the tone for the weekend for us. Additionally some other issues that really left a bad taste in our mouth:

1. We left to go to the pool and left a couple of items to dry on our patio as well as a container with pool toys that needed to be dried. Imagine my horror when I happened to glance towards our room to see the cleaning staff on the patio above ours pushing dirty water off the balcony onto my items. Are you kidding me? Who does that? There has to be a different way to clean a patio than to dump the water over the edge onto the patio area below.
2. If you aren’t overly aggressive with the bus drivers they will drive right past you. We had called for a shuttle to take us to the pool and after waiting for 10 minutes he drove right past us and we ended up driving to the pool in our car
3. The pools are overcrowded and remind me of a public pool or beach. It seems there are a lot of people who aren’t guest as evident by their own towels, coolers, etc.
4. There seemed to be a lot of drinking at the pool as evident by beer cans, bottles and red cups lining the pool.
5. The Enclaves in my understanding is the more expensive part of the property (I saw the rate of our room online at $340++ a night for our 2 bedroom) and it is surrounds the pool. Here are some additional issues with the pool area:
a. There is no poolside service – What $340++ a night hotel does not offer drink or food service to their customers? They do at the main pool.
b. There is no one who cleans up all the dirty towels, red cups, garbage, etc during the day and empty cocktail cups floating in the pool are not the toys I want my children to play with
c. The splash pad features all don’t work. Shouldn’t they be maintained and operational?
d. The pool is so cloudy you can’t see 2 feet in front of you while swimming.
e. There were kids out there swimming or should I say screaming unsupervised until the pool closed at 11pm.
f. The zero entry portion of the pool is covered in sand from the sand box. Our 11 month old would have enjoyed sitting there but couldn’t because of all the sand. Why don’t you clean that daily?

The only positives in my opinion were the layout of the rooms and the kids club area. Our room once it was cleaned was very nice, bright and spacious. The kids club was great, we went and watched a couple of movies with our kids and that is a really nice amenity.

Mind you I am writing this in the middle of our stay. I opted to come home and go back to work rather than stay at this property for the next 4 days. After this week is up we will not be returning to this property or any Marriott ever again as they really don’t seem to care about the guest experience here. It really is unfortunate as I think this property has a lot of potential, but it is just too big and overcrowded for our liking. Especially with new buildings being built as we speak. If you need to find me next summer, I will be at a Westin…

Room Tip: Away from the pool and top floor. Wall and ceilings are thin.
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  • Stayed August 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Norco, California
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 19, 2014

This resort is basically a timeshare, but can stay without being a member. Great location in Palm Desert, Ca. If you are looking for a great place that caters to all family members, this fits the bill.

The kids center will keep your children entertained while you enjoy quiet time.

Room Tip: All rooms are excellent. If you have kids try to get near recreation center
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  • Stayed May 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Santa Barbara, California
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2014

We stayed here Fri-Mon for a mini family vacation in the sun! We had a great time, stayed in bldg. 1500 across from the family pool with waterslide. My kids loved it here (ages 8 and 5). It was really crowded and the pool is packed from 9AM-9PM. The activities were fun, Zumba, golf, stuff a buddy ($25 for big one), movie nights, babysitting from 6-9 on Sunday night. The 3rd night we moved over to the Enclaves and that room was smaller, but newer, cleaner, and more updated. The pool over there was really fun, too. I think my kids liked it just as much as the other one, it has a sandy "beach" and another pool up above with a snack bar and fun water feature for little ones. We sat through the presentation to get the $150 gift card, we didn't buy a timeshare but were almost tempted. The yearly upkeep fee killed the deal though, it's about $1,000/year which is a lot considering that's probably how much we spend a year for hotels, but plus you have the cost of the timeshare. Anyway, not for us!
We will definitely come back, probably with some friends or family to hang out with!

Room Tip: Bldg 1500 for easy access to family pool. Enclave bldg. for the other Snake Bite pool, very peaceful...
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  • Stayed August 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Orland Park, Illinois
Top Contributor
57 reviews 57 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
99 helpful votes 99 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2014

Just got back from a two week stay at Shadow Ridge and it was wonderful. We stayed in the 2200 building and it seemed to be the perfect spot. We had a corner unit with a great view of the golf course and the mountains. The rooms were very very clean and well stocked. The building was also convenient for walking to the Enclave's Pool which was great. That pool is one of several on the property. We liked this one because it has two separate pools just at that one specific location. The Cabanas are free, but they are on a first come first serve basis. Contrary to many reviews, we were allowed to bring food, water and pop to the pool. If you are carrying a cooler you may have a security person rush up to you, but all they do is check for alcohol and glass which are not allowed. There is a great bar at the pool area with frozen drinks and food if you need.

The service was also exceptional. At check-in, we changed our minds of what area of the resort we wanted to stay at, and they were very accommodating. Diane was the lady that helped us check-in and change buildings and she was amazing. She really set a great tone for our entire vacation.

One of the nights we decided to have dinner at the Grill restaurant on property and took the shuttle. (They have several shuttles that make their way around the resort which makes getting to the pools, the clubhouse, or the restaurants on property very easy.) Our driver was Roberto, and he was great. He welcomed us for coming to the resort, told us how much he enjoyed working there and meeting people from all over. He made it a nice ride.

One of the great benefits of staying at this property is you get a 20% discount at the J.W. Marriott Spa, about 10 minutes away. The Spa was amazing (see that review).

Although we didn't have little kids with us, there were activities all day long for kids. Everything from shaving cream pie throwing to arts and crafts. Most activities were free, but some did have a small charge.

Overall a great place to stay with fantastic service

Room Tip: Building 2200 with a golf course view
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  • Stayed August 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oxnard, California
Top Contributor
140 reviews 140 reviews
35 hotel reviews
Reviews in 41 cities Reviews in 41 cities
56 helpful votes 56 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 15, 2014

We had a 2 bedroom suite. The resort had everthing in there!
tThe room was big. Full kitchen. Walked on the golf course. Our back room opened up to a par 3 hole. It was about a balmy 118 degrees!. Place lush green. Lots of stuff for the kids to do. The theatre was a nice surprize. The pool had too much chlorine. Pool areas closed at 11pm. Bedding was of quality.
near a costco and walmart!

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Naples, Florida
Top Contributor
107 reviews 107 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 11, 2014

We had a very nice stay at the Marriott Shadow Ridge. Rooms were clean and space was amble. There needs to be however attention paid to detail to move my rating from Very Good to an Excellent. The walk ways need attention by the housekeeping staff; the same wine cork sat outside our door as did a Q-Tip for the duration of our stay. In addition we had to call down to have the kitchen linens stocked. The kitchen amenities were the bare minimal. Multiple vanity lights were burnt out and the plumbing needs attention - loose faucets, slow drains. One the positive side, the location is a great desert get away with golf onsite. The bedding was very comfortable and the towels were nice and plush. The pools were busy but then that is expected this time of year. I hope as the property expands that more quiet / adult only spaces will be established.

Room Tip: I think quiet vs near the activity center is up to an individual's preference. Either would be...
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  • Stayed August 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Marriott's Shadow Ridge

Address: 9003 Shadow Ridge Rd, Palm Desert, CA 92211
Location: United States > California > California Desert > Greater Palm Springs > Palm Desert
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Palm Desert
#9 Romantic Hotel in Palm Desert
#12 Family Hotel in Palm Desert
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Marriott's Shadow Ridge 3.5*
Number of rooms: 848
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Southern California's magnificent mountain ranges serve as the breathtaking backdrop for Marriott's Shadow Ridge. Spacious villas overlook rolling fairways and sparkling lakes weaving throughout the landscape. Beautiful master suites feature a king bed and oversized soaking tub while the spacious living and dining areas, and fully kitchen offer convenience and comfort. Swing by the Faldo Golf Institute by Marriott and try your luck on the championship course. Then relax at Nick Faldo's Bar & Grill. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Marriott`s Shadow Ridge Hotel Palm Desert
Marriotts Palm Desert
Marriotts Hotel Shadow Ridge
Marriott Palm Desert
Marriott Shadow Ridge
Marriotts Shadow Ridge

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