Mad Men in the Desert: L’Horizon Hotel

If there are two things I like in the same sentence it would be “mid-century modern” and “Palm Springs”. Palm Springs is known for it’s mid-century modern architecture and L’Horizon Hotel is a perfect example of it.

With iconic, mid-century modern architecture and a rich Hollywood history, L’Horizon offers a luxury boutique hotel experience just minutes from downtown Palm Springs. Designed in 1952 by renowned architect William F. Cody, L’Horizon was a favorite celebrity destination spot in the 50s and 60s, and attracted guests from Hollywood’s golden era including Marilyn Monroe and Betty Grable as well as several U.S. Presidents.

Architect Steve Hermann purchased the property and completed a multimillion-dollar re-design. The exclusive hotel became Palm Springs’ only luxury boutique hotel.  It opened its doors in June 2015 to much fanfare. L’Horizon boasts twenty-five private bungalows, many with private patios and outdoor showers that overlook the infinity pool and beautifully landscaped 3 acres.

“I designed it as a 25-bedroom house,” Hermann says of his scheme. “No two rooms are the same, and we used residential-grade furnishings, mixing collectible vintage and new modern pieces, then selecting items that are bespoke or from small-batch manufacturers. You end up with a really unique, really artisanal product.”

The rooms—several with fireplaces and all with richly grained, custom-milled tongue-and-groove pine ceilings, lye-treated wood floors, and sweeping walls of glass shielded by motorized curtains—have the flair of a mid-century gentleman’s club. Classic vintage chairs (a Percival Lafer, say, or a George Mulhauser) sit against new pieces by Phase Design, hand-sewn hide-on-hair rugs, lighting by the likes of Brendan Ravenhill, and original artwork.

As for the hotel’s cosseting comforts, Hermann has outfitted every room with Frette robes, towels, slippers, and 600-thread-count bedding, Le Labo bath products, and Dean & DeLuca minibar goodies. There are even complimentary foot and back massages at the pool.

The property is  also home to an innovative restaurant helmed by Michelin Stared Chef, Giacomo Pettinari, who honed his craft at the legendary El Bulli, and went on to helm Valentino in Los Angeles. The restaurant and bar offers an eclectic menu of progressive Southern European and California creations, as well as a predominantly West Coast wine list. Whenever possible, the team is committed to using organic, bio-dynamic and farmer’s produce while sourcing all within a 150 mile radius.

It’s hard to imagine Marilyn and Betty ever would have had it so good.

Continue Reading