We took a mini vacay to the Omni Rancho Las Palmas in Rancho Mirage (aka Palm Springs) with the kids – OMG what a great destination for a family getaway! If you have water loving kiddos, Splashtopia at this resort won’t disappoint, I promise! This trip was for the kids so this review does not include the kids club, golf course or spa but the whole property is beautiful and offers full service luxury amenities…maybe next time!? We had a fabulous time at Splashtopia at the Omni Rancho Las Palmas and the kids can’t wait to go back!
Omni Rancho Las Palmas Pool Area AKA Splashtopia
Firstly, the primary reason we went (and I think why most families go)…THE POOL AREA! Splashtopia as its called, is BOMB. Like, really, really awesome. They have a kids pool, an enormous 425 foot lazy river with an attached kiddie pool with incline entrance, a covered sandbox (yes, you read that right, a fully shaded sandbox, so for all those sand loving kiddos…SHADE FOR DAYS!)…plus two 100 foot waterslides (think long enough that kids of all ages love it, but not too long so even the little guys can get in on the action), a splash pad and a full schedule of pool activities throughout the day. Cabanas, chairs, umbrellas, poolside service…welcome to Splashtopia.
The lazy river was most definitely our favorite part of the pool area. We enjoyed spending a long time (as did the boys) floating around in it. Tubes are provided. Our 5-year old also loved the waterslides. It had been many years since I went down a waterslide, it was pretty fun I’ll admit 🙂 The lines were long but moved VERY quickly. It is important note that kids are NOT allowed to go down with an adult, they must ride individually…as such H (Mr. 4) wasn’t so interested in them.
They had a nice sized splash pad and a regular kids pool. The regular pool wasn’t so interesting to our kids but there were plenty of kids in the pool, and they did allow floats (I’d suggest bringing one, we saw unicorns and flamingos and all sorts of fun ones).
Is Omni Rancho Las Palmas Crowded?
Before we went, we had heard (and read reviews) that the pool was very crowded, and that day passes are sold to the pool adding to the chaos. For me, it disrupts my enjoyment when I can’t find a seat in the shade (its a deal breaker if I cannot find a seat at all). I feel that when I pay for a luxury property, I should be able to sit poolside in the shade. While admittedly I would have preferred less people AND it was obvious there were day passes being sold – we had no problems finding a seat at the pool in the shade or finding free tubes for the lazy river on either Saturday or Sunday, no matter what time we went. The day pass crowd was identifiable, but inconsequential for us. PS 9am-10am was very quiet at the pool, and an absolutely lovely hour to be there…I definitely recommend being the first one in the pool!
Omni Rancho Las Palmas Cabana
We had went back and forth on reserving a cabana but decided to make it a game time decision. With the weather over 100 degrees this trip, we honestly spent zero time in our chairs – when we were done IN the pool we were done AT the pool. I could see two scenarios where I would have wanted a cabana (a) a joint trip with friends where we wanted to hang out, have drinks, lunch at the pool or (b) if we had gone when H was younger and was going to nap him in the cabana while Gman played. Maybe next time if the weather is a little cooler we’ll get one and hang all day at the pool, but in this heat, we didn’t feel it was necessary. We wanted an air conditioned break/lunch! 🙂
There were kids activities throughout the day. Our kids participated in sand art. I also saw ceramics, painting, games, water aerobics, and a nightly movie at the pool, among other things.
There are ponds around the golf course with ducks, which currently have several duck families and baby ducks which are SO CUTE! One mama came right up to our hotel room the morning we were leaving, the boys loved it!! They ducklings were so cute!!
We ate at the Blue Ember restaurant both nights and both mornings for breakfast. The decor is odd (mostly in that it doesn’t match the hotel at all) and given that the hotel was sold out (per the front desk upon check in) was oddly empty at dinner time. Breakfast, on the other hand, was fine. We liked the food and the wine menus. I’m not sure where everyone eats dinner?
As noted above, we didn’t use the spa or the kids club, nor did my husband golf…if you want to golf just keep in mind you need a super early tee time in the summer because of the heat. There is also an 18+ adults only pool, which we did not use this trip. There are several shops on property with a wide variety of gifts, food, clothing and other items available, a yummy daily flavored water in the lobby, room service, a Peets Coffee and friendly staff. The concierge sent up kids activity backpacks for the boys (can be requested at the concierge desk) which they enjoyed.
The Rooms and Why You Probably Don’t Want a Poolside Room
The rooms are generally nice at the Omni Rancho Las Palmas. They are clean and have both a mini fridge and a mini bar. Its not five star but very nice. As with any hotel, rooms are not all updated simultaneously so some blocks are nicer than others and views and proximity to amenities will vary by a guests needs and personal preferences. I think most people reading my blog have little kids…so as such here are my thoughts and recommendations:
- the movie that plays nightly is from 7:30pm until roughly 9:30pm in the pool area and the pool view rooms are going to be disruptively loud for young children to get to sleep until about 10pm
- the hotel is two stories- there isn’t an elevator (that I saw) so if you are using a stroller you will want a first floor room. If you are stroller free with kiddos who can easily walk upstairs independently then a second story room will be quieter (you can remember your apartment days right? you can hear people when someone’s above you especially when they have a couple of kids bouncing off the walls of a hotel room LOL!)
- I suggest room blocks 8, 10, 28 or 30 (we stayed in 30) – these are Lakeview rooms – close to the pool area and the restaurant but not too close to the pool area at night for noise levels
- call the hotel to book your room directly, and make the requested room block/floor noted at the time of your reservation – request again at check-in
- if booking through a third party select a “Lakeview” room type, and then call ahead and request a notation be placed in your reservation requesting one of the above room blocks, floor preference, etc. – request again at check-in
TIP: There is a deal online right now for $109 – $159 at the Omni Rancho Las Palmas! This is an AMAZING rate for this resort! Note: There is a $38/day resort fee (but no parking fee, parking is self parking)…so factor that in 🙂
Have you been to the Omni Rancho Las Palmas? I’d love to hear about it! Especially if you have been to the Spa, used the kids club or golfed!
Let me know if you go! Happy luxe travels mamas! Remember to check Groupon for deals before you book…especially if you’re headed there off season!