Curio Collection Local Guide, Indian Wells

We sent Yodeler Christopher Hainey to Miramonte Indian Wells Resort & Spa, Curio Collection by Hilton to experience the beautiful resort, shoot some photos and create an Indian Wells Curio Travel Guide. It’s full of unique tips and local secrets, just for you.

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Name? Christopher Hainey

Occupation? Musician & photographer

Preoccupation? Design

Place you live? Venice, California

Can you sum up Indian Wells? Indian Wells is hot enough during the day to swim but cool enough in the evening to warm up by a fire. It’s full of friendly people and a great mix of beautiful modern and mid-century architecture, design and shopping.

What is the best thing about Indian Wells? The view! The contrast between the sandy desert floor and the snowy mountain tops is something that I never tire of seeing. There are a lot of great vantage points around town as well to get a good view. They are super easy to find just by driving around.

What is a perfect day in Indian Wells? A fresh meal with local produce at The Grove Artisan Kitchen, where Chef Paul Hancock uses items grown on the grounds of Miramonte Indian Wells Resort & Spa and also has partnerships with a lot of great local farmers. A part of Hilton’s Curio Collection, Miramonte is uniquely positioned to offer guests the ability to set off for a hike through the desert terrain in the morning, take a dip in one of the pools mid-day and to soak in the evening sunset by the fire pit – all in one day to  sum up the perfect day.

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What are the people like in Indian Wells? Everyone in the entire Coachella valley is incredibly warm and welcoming. No matter if you’re hiking around Indian Wells, shopping in the glamorous El Paseo district or dining at one of the many retro restaurants of downtown Palm Springs, residents are always quick to help. And with the sun shining the vast majority of the year, it’s hard to be anything but friendly!

If Indian Wells was a person who would it be? Your nice and thoughtful aunt that you don’t see that frequently, but when you get a chance you always think to yourself that you should visit more often.

What was your impression of Miramonte Indian Wells Resort & Spa, Curio Collection by Hilton? The hotel was very spacious, from the rooms to the courtyards to the recreational areas. Every part of it was really well thought out to give the guests a beautiful and relaxing environment to enjoy. The hotel itself was structured differently than other hotels I’ve stayed at. The villas are each their own unique shape, and that really adds to keeping the overall spacious feel of the resort’s grounds. I think when all the rooms are stacked on top of each other in the conventional cookie-cutter type way you can feel quite confined, so it was nice to stay at a place that was sort of the antithesis of that.

Can you tell us about your experience visiting Miramonte Indian Wells Resort & Spa, Curio Collection by Hilton? It was a really great experience, and there was never a shortage of things to do. I don’t think I’ve ever stayed at a place with three pools before, which I wasn’t expecting at all but was a nice surprise. I loved how the layout of the hotel was done thoughtfully in relation to its surrounding area and views of the mountains. The layout allows for light to bounce around the buildings as the sun goes down, which as a photographer I appreciate. The hotel team was super friendly, the food and drinks at The Grove Artisan Kitchen and Vineyard Lounge were delicious, creative and they use the fruit they grow on the grounds in every way they can.

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If a friend was visiting Indian Wells what would you suggest they do? I would recommend starting the day with breakfast at Wilma & Frieda El Paseo and follow that with a morning spa treatment at the 12,000 square-foot Well Spa, at Miramonte Indian Wells Resort & Spa, Curio Collection by Hilton.

After hitting the spa, I would suggest a drive down the palm-lined streets for the mountain views, visit some local shops (check out El Paseo Street), and take in the beautiful desert landscape. For lunch, enjoy some insane latte art, and a giant cookie at IW Coffee.

To work off lunch, I would highly recommend taking part in one of the great hikes around the area. Here is a great list of local hiking trails.

Then, head back to the Miramonte Indian Wells Resort & Spa, Curio Collection by Hilton for a dip in one of the pools and take in the beautiful golden desert sunset.

For dinner, I would recommend Misaki Sushi & Grill, where the cooks all yell at you (in a charming way) as you enter and leave through the front door.




Indian Wells

Best place to eat:

Misaki Sushi & Grill

Best place to drink:

IW Coffee

Best place to shop:

The shops on El Paseo.

Best outdoor activity:

There is some really great hiking around the area.

Local tip:

There’s an annual outdoor public space art exhibition that is called Desert X and a handful of artists create large installations all around the area, including Palm Springs and Coachella.

Best place to stay:

Miramonte Indian Wells Resort & Spa, Curio Collection by Hilton