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“Late Review” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Avalon Hotel and Bungalows Palm Springs

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Avalon Hotel and Bungalows Palm Springs
Ranked #24 of 70 Hotels in Palm Springs
Certificate of Excellence
Bristol
Level Contributor
83 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“Late Review”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 29, 2012

Drove down from the Grand Canyon to Palm Springs, arriving late afternoon. We found it difficult to find the Hotel Entrance and it was my wife who spotted a small sign; Viceroy Valet Parking. The receptionist was very helpful and explained that the car would be taken care of and our luggage taken to our room. The car keys were retained by valet parking. The following day I needed access to the car and went to reception to pick up the keys. I was told that I could not have the keys and they would call the valet to open my car. When I queried this arrangement, i was told that it was a precaution to prevent any damage to other vehicles. The irony was that no cars were in that line of parking and, of course, you are obliged to tip the valet for the minor task.
The inside of the hotel was fashionable with the option of having meals and drinks served outside adjacent to one of the pools.
The room was clean and pleasant with a view over the pool. We were concerned that it might be noisy, but it was quiet and we did not see many people.
This hotel was booked through Trailfinders and they described the accommodation as Premium Studio with Breakfast. The hotel gave us a voucher when we arrived for breakfast, value $30. We ordered the cheapest item on the menu and coffee and the bill was $41.76, inclusive of tax and gratuity.
Every time you used the valet service you felt obliged to leave a tip.
Although the Hotel was lovely, it did not feel a relaxed stay.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Valuation
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MHGouhier, General Manager at Avalon Hotel and Bungalows Palm Springs, responded to this review, December 9, 2012
We thank you for taking the time to give us your great feedback and really do appreciate.
Warmest Regards,

Marie Helene
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (216)
Date | Rating
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English first
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
24 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 27, 2012

My husband and I stayed at the Viceroy over Thanksgiving weekend for a little R&R. I had read many mixed reviews of the hotel before we booked it, and as it turns out, we came away with mixed feelings about our stay as well.

We were looking for a stylish, luxury hotel within walking distance of downtown, with a lively but sophisticated scene. We did not want a "party" hotel, which is why we ultimately chose the Viceroy over our other choices, the Parker and the Riviera. We booked our room through the Visa Signature luxury hotels program because the rate included free continental breakfast, an automatic upgrade, late checkout, and other perks.

We liked the lobby and grounds of the hotel; we found them to be stylish and fun. We spent time relaxing at the Presidio pool, which is supposed to be the "family" pool, but there were no kids while we were there and it was very peaceful. The other two pools were busier, but still inviting. We enjoyed drinks at the bar and the food service was good as well. The staff at the Viceroy was mostly young, but very friendly.

We had deep tissue massages at the Estrella spa on the property one day. My husband reported that his massage was great. My massage was good as well, but the therapist ended it 8-10 minutes early for some reason. The hotel gym was very small and was crowded both times we used it. I ended up leaving and going for runs outside because the treadmills were always busy.

We splurged on a Wetherly suite at the rate of $375/night, plus the resort fee. We were not upgraded to a villa, even though the rate we booked was supposed to include an automatic upgrade. We were told that an upgrade was not possible because the hotel was full, but we were assured that our suite was one of the nicest accommodations on the property.

Our second floor suite, #324, was like a one-bedroom efficiency from the 60s. It included a bedroom with ensuite bathroom, and a living room that opened onto a small, somewhat decrepit balcony overlooking the Citron pool. There was a second, smaller bathroom near the front door. The living room area was large, but we found it to be cavernous and unappealing given the way it was furnished. If we were to stay again as a couple, we would choose one of the pool view studios instead at a lower rate.

I agree with past reviewers who observed that the rooms at the Viceroy were given a "lipstick" renovation. The master bathroom in our suite had an old, plastic, stained bathtub that looked like it was from a Motel 6. The other bathroom had a cheap plastic shower stall. The furniture (with the exception of the bed) seemed like it was from Ikea and was neither useful nor comfortable. The sofa in the living room was dingy, uncomfortable, and smelled like wet dog. There were no drawers for clothes, only closets. The butterfly doors to the media cabinet at the foot of the bed would not stay open so we could watch TV. The TVs were flat screen, but were not high def, and the picture quality was terrible. The TV in the bedroom was tiny, probably 14" at most, even though the cabinet could have accommodated a much bigger one.

We did like that the king bed was ultra-comfortable and outfitted in high quality linens. (Weirdly, the towels were sometimes nice Sferra towels, and other times thin scratchy no-name towels). We also liked that the bathrooms were stocked with wonderful, full-size Neil George bath products (so nice not having to mess with all those little bottles!) We also appreciated some of the design elements that WERE included in the renovation: cool wallpaper on the bedroom ceiling, funky light fixtures, the bright yellow chairs (although not comfortable to lounge on).

The worst part of our stay was the noise factor on Saturday evening. Our bedroom backed up to the Presidio courtyard and pool area, which is one of the hotel's popular outdoor wedding venues. At 4pm we returned from a hike, wanting to take a little nap before dinner. The music from a large wedding in the courtyard was already blaring and made napping or even watching TV impossible...it was like the wedding band was right in our room. We called the front desk and were told that the noise was unavoidable, and that it would stop by 10 pm at the latest. So, we skipped our nap and instead listened to the wedding music, wedding toasts, first dance, cheers, and crowd noise while we got showered and got dressed for cocktails and dinner in town.

We returned to our room at 10:00 pm only to find that the wedding party was raging even harder and louder. I called the front desk again. They were apologetic and said they would speak to the wedding coordinator. At 11:30, the party and music was STILL blaring. I called again, and was told that the wedding coordinator was supposed to be shutting it down but there wasn't much they could do. They asked if we wanted to switch to another room. Um, thanks, but NO we don't want to pack all our stuff and lug it to another room on the last night of our stay. About 15 minutes later, we heard police sirens outside and saw what looked like a police officer (although it could have been a security guard) approaching the courtyard. The party shut down pretty quickly after that, and we thought we would finally be able to get some sleep.

Unfortunately, right before turning out the lights, we noticed a bunch of ants streaming all over the nightstand next to the bed. We had not had anything to eat or drink in the room so I'm not sure where they came from. We squished as many as we could with a washcloth, but the rest of the night we were both waking up thinking ants were crawling on us. Icky.

The next day, I called the front desk to let them know about the ant problem because we could still see a few of them crawling around the nightstand. I also requested a late check out, because our flight did not leave until the evening. The desk clerk said said they could do a 5pm check out for a $75 fee. When I mentioned that the rate we booked was supposed to include a late check out, she said that meant a 1 pm checkout (regular checkout is at noon). I then mentioned all the problems from the night before, and asked if they could possibly comp the late check out fee. The desk clerk said she would check with her manager. Her manager later approved it, but I was a little annoyed I had to ask in the first place, given the issues we experienced.

Overall, I might return to the Viceroy, but only at a MUCH cheaper rate, and only in a room that is not located near the wedding areas.

Room Tip: Pool or courtyard views are the best. For a couple, the Wetherly suite is not worth the upgrade fro...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank SanFranciscoSfgal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MHGouhier, General Manager at Avalon Hotel and Bungalows Palm Springs, responded to this review, December 9, 2012
I sincerely apologize for the noise disturbance from the Wedding party at your last stay with us, and hope you will be able to come back and have a relaxing stay.
Warmest Regards
Marie Helene
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 25, 2012

Well, I feel it is a little necessary to write a "counter-review" to that last review complaining about a wedding and being kicked out at midnight (yes this is residential, so noise laws are a consideration Im guessing) as well as food poisoning....Actually, my brother got married there in October, and first of all, it was amazing, at least from the guests' point of view (me). The food at the reception was pretty good (I should know I am a foodie NYer) and the front desk was fabulous - they even helped me try to find my lost ipad all day...shout out to Bunnie at the front desk for her service. And also the manager, a helpful gentleman (sorry, I don't remember the name!), who literally sat with me for an hour trying to figure out the tracking system on the ipad. I liked the free coffee in the morning, so many thanks! The staff did a great job...ok, yes, the renovation was a "lipstick" renovation as someone called it on another review, and yes needs more drawer space, so may eventually require more upgrades, but the place for the most part is a lovely intimate property. It is very boutiquey.

Room Tip: Rooms overlooking the pool are better than those overlooking the street/parking lot (although that i...
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Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
Helpful?
Thank anna s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Paris, France
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 9, 2012

This hotel is perfect for a weekend get away. It's still very close from LA so you can go for the weekend but far away enough so you can relax. The decor of this hotel makes me think about old glamorous hollywood. I have so many wonderful memories here with my fiance by the swimming pool having a drink in the warm desert night. Unfortunately I'm very far away from it now since I `currently live in Paris but I can wait to go back. If you plan to go to Palm Springs you should also try to have dinner by this hotel costes like restaurant called Jake's downtown.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank IsabellaPBM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MHGouhier, General Manager at Avalon Hotel and Bungalows Palm Springs, responded to this review, November 10, 2012
We are so glad you have great memories from your stay with us and cannot wait to welcome you back in the desert! All the best et a bientot j'espere,
Marie Helene
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Watford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
79 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 8, 2012

We were dissapointed with the Viceroy. The rooms are large, but there is almost no hanging space for your clothes, no drawers and almost no shelving. We wanted to unpack for our four night stay but there was nowhere to put your clothes. The airconditioning was very noisey and if you shut your curtains it blocked it out as it was placed behind them. They had no English breakfast or black tea only Earl Grey which is not the same at breakfast so we had to buy our own. The bed was comfy and the staff very nice and would do anything for you. We had a nice stay but the points mentioned spoilt it for us.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Janicedempsey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MHGouhier, General Manager at Avalon Hotel and Bungalows Palm Springs, responded to this review, November 10, 2012
Thank you so much for taking the time to share your concerns with us. We will follow up and address. Sincerely, Marie Helene
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
new jersey
Level Contributor
19 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 6, 2012

We loved this place. It was built in the 1930s and was a haven for Hollywood celebrities. While celebrities have moved on to other places, the Viceroy retains the look. The hotel is well-hidden, but just a block off the main avenue. So well-hidden that I drove past it (there is no driveway, just a small valet stand). The staff couldn't be nicer, the rooms are magnificient and the poolside restaurant is very good. All this at a price that is reasonable. The Viceroy is added to our small list of memorable hotels.

Room Tip: We found the view of the pool to be more attractive than the nearby mountain.
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
Thank njrms
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MHGouhier, General Manager at Avalon Hotel and Bungalows Palm Springs, responded to this review, November 10, 2012
Thank you so much for your kind feedback! We cannot wait to welcome you back!
All the best,

Marie Helene
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sacramento, CA
Level Contributor
14 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed November 6, 2012

This hotel was such a disappointment. I have stayed here in the past and had a good time, but the hotel has completely changed. The front desk clerk was SO RUDE! I made reservations months in advance and called the hotel to stay in the Regency Court. When I checked in, the front desk said that a wedding had taken over that area and I could not stay there. No apology was offered and since the hotel was busy, the only rooms available were in the front of the hotel on the street (so much for peace & quiet). The manager stood at the front desk the entire time and never once uttered a peep, apology or even made eye contact.

Then, the room! Oh God, the room! This was an awful room that looked right out of a horror movie! I don't know how this hotel has any repeat guests if they are renting out these rooms. Located under a staircase and next to a parking lot, the room was dingy with cheap furniture that looked like old Ikea that was never properly assembled in the first place (falling apart). A loud air conditioner in the corner welcomed you to what felt like the basement. There was a huge wall out about five feet (making one of the World's smallest patios), so you basically had a tiny view of the sky and that's it. The bed squeaked if you even looked at it, so hope you don't move at night, otherwise you will wake up the entire building. Even down to the door of the room (no self closer, you had better make sure you lock it behind you, and the lock sticks too). The room also didn't have the required California law posting about check in, check out, fire escape (I think we'd all die if there was a fire in this pit of a hotel).

The bathroom was an absolute joke! The toilet was actually installed crooked and the toilet seat was so old and worn that the white was wearing off! (How much is a new toilet seat, like $10?) The tub faucet was pulling away from the wall. The bathroom was only provided with two bath towels, one face towel and one washcloth. Hope you don't actually need a towel for anything. The tub/shower combo is a cheap, plastic one piece unit like you had in your first apartment. It creaks and the water pressure will take your skin off.

Oh, and the WiFi in the room never once worked. I called the front desk (different person, same RUDE attitude), but the maintenance worker did nothing about it and we never had internet in the room.

I could go on and on about the shortcomings in this hotel, but let me sum it up. Stay somewhere else! The price is too high, the quality is too low, the service is too poor, the rooms are too shabby, this hotel is over! There are so many better choices in Palm Springs, like under a bridge instead of this hotel.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 1 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 1 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Sactown123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MHGouhier, General Manager at Avalon Hotel and Bungalows Palm Springs, responded to this review, November 10, 2012
We would like to apologize for not meeting your expectations. Sincerely Marie Helene
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Avalon Hotel and Bungalows Palm Springs

Property: Avalon Hotel and Bungalows Palm Springs
Address: 415 South Belardo Road, Palm Springs, CA 92262 (Formerly Viceroy Palm Springs)
Location: United States > California > California Desert > Palm Springs
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Spa Hotel in Palm Springs
#8 Family Hotel in Palm Springs
#8 Luxury Hotel in Palm Springs
#22 Romantic Hotel in Palm Springs
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Avalon Hotel and Bungalows Palm Springs 4*
Number of rooms: 67
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A jewel box nestled in the heart of downtown Palm Springs, the historic Avalon Hotel and Bungalows Palm Springs rests at the foot of the rugged San Jacinto Mountains on four acres of fragrant, beautifully manicured gardens. Its Spanish architecture punctuated by a series of secluded, private bungalows, calls forth the iconic, storied Golden Age of Palm Springs, exuberantly updated with Hollywood Regency interiors by renowned designer Kelly Wearstler. At Avalon every experience has been hand-curated by a team of collaborators and bona fide hotel aficionados. You might say it's a calling. A penchant for wanderlust. A mind for singular retreats and unrepeatable vibes. We hold an affinity for one-offs, anomalies and the irrefutable allure of a personal touch. Our trademarks are small batched. Think of us as your own private hideaway. All you have to do is stay. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Viceroy Palm Springs Hotel Palm Springs
Viceroy Hotel Palm Springs
Palm Springs Viceroy Hotel

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