28 May Coachella Valley, Indio & Surrounding Area
Author: Ronnie Greenberg
Photos by: Joe Hilbers
5310 Dubois Ave
Woodland Hills, CA 91367
Coachella Valley, Indio & Surrounding Area
By: Ronnie Greenberg
Photos: Joe Hilbers
Coddled at the base of five rugged, serene and sometimes snow-capped mountain ranges, the Coachella Valley is set in a dramatic desertscape that’s smudged with soft pastels and muted shades of earthtones. It was named in the 1800s by the Southern Pacific Railroad Corporation and has an age old history with Native Americans. Here, whispers of the wind whip across the Pacific tip of the awesome Colorado Desert rich with flora, fauna and natural wonders. The diversified valley extends southeast from Riverside County to the Salton Sea.
Indio one of the eight unique and spectacular desert resorts is the center of one of the largest date-producing areas in the United States. Blending the sophistication of the famed Palm Springs and the charm of early-California, a visit to the region will have you infused with the magical sensation that has lured Presidents, Barons and moguls.
Where to stay
Reflecting the tranquility and spirituality of the desert the discreet charm of the Fantasy Springs Resort Casino offers a taste of everything luring you to stay longer. For a fun-filled getaway, stay in one of the Resort’s 250 luxurious rooms or suites, indulge in fabulous dining, and enjoy world-class entertainment. In addition to exciting Vegas style gaming options, the resort offers a fitness center, crystal-clear-103-foot swimming pool, a Jacuzzi for soaking and a tanning pool
For entertainment and recreation there’s Fantasy Springs Special Events Center that plays host to headliners, comedy shows and live music; The Fantasy Lounge a more intimate concert venue; and the Fantasy Lanes Bowling Center, a 24-lane entertainment facility for the entire family featuring a video arcade and pro shop. There is also a Snack Bar & Lounge.
Resort Dining has a spectrum of tempting dining options from fine dining to a casual meal. These always have delicious offerings waiting for you, The Bistro; Joy Asian Cuisine; Pom; The Fresh Grill; Pizza Kitchen and Lique.
Fantasy Springs Resort Casino is located at 84-245 Indio Springs, Parkway in Indo, California. For information and reservations www.fantasyspringsresort..com Located 120 miles from Los Angeles, and 30 minutes from the Palm Springs Airport. To get to the Resort Exit I-10 at Golf Center Parkway in Indio.
Coachella Valley attractions
The Cabazon Band of Mission Indians have a rich history that predates both the Spanish and Anglo arrivals in the region by thousands of year. Their ancestors were primarily Cahuilla Indians (pronounced Kah-we-ah) who thrived in the Coachella Valley, and the surrounding passes and mountains by fishing in the now-dry Ancient Lake Cahuilla, gathering acorns and other seeds, and hunting on the steep slopes of the mountains. They survived the dry unyielding land by digging wells, and when the Spanish arrived in 1776, they proved to be adept traders. Today there are fewer than 50 members of the Cabazon Band, and the reservation covers 1450 acres in parcels spread over 16 miles. Each Thanksgiving weekend, the Cabazon Band hosts the Indio Powwow to honor, help preserve and introduce others to Native American culture. The Cabazon Cultural Museum, celebrating a heritage more than 2500 years old, preserves the Cabazon history, traditions and culture. As part of the commitment to cultural preservation, the museum is open to the public free of charge, and invites everyone to “Walk in the footsteps of the ancient Cahuilla people.” The museum also has modern relevance with exhibits focusing on contemporary history. The museum is located across from The Fantasy Springs Resort Hotel at 84-245 Indio Springs Parkway.
For an incredible adventure take one of the Desert Adventure’s Red Jeep Tours. The San Andreas Fault Adventure, that explores a “desert badlands” landscape in the strange and eerie world of the San Andreas Fault at Desert Adventures Ranch. Steep canyons dwarf you as you wind through the tortuous terrain created by its awesome power. Geology and jollity mix as you tread through the tormented landscape, warped and bent by the powerful movement of the Earth’s crust. The Indian Cultural Adventure takes you to an authentic Native American archeological site on the San Andreas Fault, to learn how Indians survived here. Marvel at the contrast of a natural palm oasis and narrow dry-wavy canyons. The Mystery Canyon Adventure: thrust up by tectonic collisions and cut into endless mazes by erosion, these steep-walled canyons offer spectacular scenery. This tour includes hiking geared to ability. The Night Watch Adventure provides guests with a nocturnal voyage among surreal shadows and darkness on a cooling desert landscape. For information and reservations www.red-jeep.com
Take a fascinating trip back in time with Indio’s Historic Murals Project where colorful scene from the region’s past adorn Old Town buildings, along historic Route 99. The Murals tell the history of the Cabazon Indians, transportation, electricity, agriculture and water.
In contrast, relatively new to the area is the Coachella Valley Brewing Company focusing on the uniqueness of the Southern California Desert.
Balloon Above the Desert- Greet the sun or bid it farewell as you drift in beautiful desert skies while floating effortlessly in a colorful hot air balloon. Sip champagne, enjoy the view and soar above vineyards, polo fields and exotic orchards. For reservations www.balloonabovethedesert.com
Outdoor enthusiasts will enjoy golf at over 120-area golf courses including closeby Landmark Golf Club, built into the Indio Hills and former home of The Skins Game, and the Trilogy Golf Club at La Quinta, the current home of The Skins Game. The area is also home to several world-class tennis facilities. Hiking enthusiasts have hundreds of trails to choose from including, the desert mountains that offer exciting adventures and sights. You will thrill to the speed and grace of the magnificent horses at the Empire Polo Club and Eldorado Polo Club, two of the country’s finest polo facilities.
Indio the vibrant City of Festivals is host to the National Date Festival, International Tamale Festival, Southwest Arts Festival, Indian Powwow and Indio Desert Circuit Horse Show. For information on Indo visit their web at: www.indiochamber.org