"Palm Springs--Merv Griffin's Resort makes for a great desert experience"


By Vern Lanegrasse, The Hollywood Chef

Since September 11 more and more travelers are choosing to rediscover America. We in Southern California are fortunate enough to have many choices for travel just a few miles from our homes. We can go to the beach, the mountains or the desert. If you haven’t been to Palm Springs lately it is the time of year to go. There is nothing more beautiful than a night in the desert.

I recently rediscovered “the oasis” in the desert. Just a couple hours away by automobile you can relax at Merv Griffin’s Resort Hotel & Spa. A lushly landscaped intimate hotel in contemporary French Renaissance design guests are offered the utmost in elite privacy and personalized service. It is the time-honored philosophy of French pampering originated at the Givenchy Spa in Versailles, France.

The fourteen acre setting, Givenchy Parc, boasts a much photographed garden with over 700 varieties of roses, walking paths, six tennis courts, two swimming pools, sunbathing area, the replica of the petite Trianon at Versailles Palace which is the Givenchy Spa, fitness center, and croquet.

The resort’s 103 warm and inviting rooms and suites offer the ultimate in privacy and comfort. Spacious and uniquely decorated, they are located in choice sites on the acreage, including villas with private patios and spectacular mountain views. In the hallways the walls are decorated with magnificent photos of famous ladies of Hollywood's Golden Era. There is the Grand Suite, a replica of the Givenchy Mansion in Paris, available as a one, two, three or four bedroom accommodation. With baby grand piano, spectacular view, elegant furnishings and staircase, it is well suited for meetings, private parties and intimate retreats. There isn’t anything in the desert that I have seen to match the beauty of Merv Griffin’s Resort & Spa.

When dining you have a choice for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner. Breakfast and lunch in the Garden Terrace is casual, relaxing and a wondrous view of the surrounding gardens and far away mountains. Dinner in Gigi's is more formal. The ambience in this dining room reminds me of dining in Paris on the Rue Madeline. Low lights, fresh flowers, crystal, china and silver are top line. Service in either dining room is perfection. If you wish to dine less formal the Garden Terrace is great. Both dining rooms serve the same classical Franco California cuisine.

Anthony Gusich is the executive chef. A charming talented California native. Remember his name, he will become one of our top chefs. Besides gorgeous presentations, the fresh local produce plus imported delicacies have been united by the Chef to give us real joys to our palates. His desserts are outstanding. Chef Gusich has a real gift he shares with us in every meal. Both restaurants are in the Main Pavilion.

I find it hard to leave this wonderful “Desert Oasis”.

For more information, reservations and rates Call: 8OO 276-523O or 76O 77O-5OOO, Fax: 760-324-6104. Merv Griffin’s Resort Hotel & Spa, 4200 East Palm Canyon Canyon Drive, Palm Springs, Ca. 92264.

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Last Update:3/1/02

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