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Korakia Pensione in Palm Springs, California

The Korakia Pensione in Palm Springs, a Moroccan villa built in 1924, is a rare find. Scottish painter Gordon Coutts had been in Tangiers, and wanted to bring the style of the North African desert to this Southern California one. “Dar Marroc”, as he called his resulting escape, thus became a cultural oasis for local celebrities from Errol Flynn to Rudolph Valentino, and was restored in 1989 as “Korakia” (“black crow” in Greek). The house is a rare 1918 California adobe, with a keyhole-shaped grand entrance and ornate, Moorish wooden doors that whisper of glamour.

Start the day with an outdoor yoga class in the clean desert air and complimentary house-made breakfast of Greek yogurt and fresh granola before taking a horseback ride through the canyon. Return to the hotel for an epic Mediterranean salad poolside, and take one of the Korakia’s bikes into town for an afternoon of antiques shopping: this is a mid-century design mecca. Enjoy a Cal-Mex dinner with fresh jalepeno margritas, then bike – or cab, depending on the size of your purchases – back to the hotel to play a moonlit game of bocce. Perhaps fit in a late-night swim under the stars or a glass of wine by the outdoor fire pits, and enjoy a vintage movie (shown nightly). Dream of the massage that’s yours the next day.

Location of Korakia Pensione

Korakia Pensione
257 S. Patencio Road
Palm Springs, California

Nearest Airport: PSP

Amenities for Korakia Pensione

  • General Information
  • 28 Guest Rooms
  • Ecologically Sustainable Practices
  • Only 13+ Years Permitted
  • Not Recommended for Children
  • Pets Not Permitted
  • Dining
  • Poolside Dining
  • Outdoor Dining
  • Afternoon Tea
  • On-Site Amenities
  • Spa on Property
  • Library
  • Outdoor Pool
  • In-Room Spa Services
  • 2 Outdoor Heated Pools
  • In-Room Amenities
  • Turndown Service
  • Air Conditioning
  • Bathrobes
  • Hair Dryers
  • In-Room Safes
  • Activities
  • Bicycling
  • Hiking
  • Tennis
  • Stargazing
  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Bocce Ball
  • Nearby
  • Art Galleries
  • Museums
  • Restaurants
  • Golf
  • Antique Shopping
  • Interests
  • Culture & Arts

Reviews for Korakia Pensione

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TripAdvisor Traveler Review Rating Reviewed 2 weeks ago

We always try to escape from the grey gloomy days of a Pacific Northwest winter. We have found Palm Spring to be our cure. We have been staying at Korakia annually for the last 6 years. We love the retro feel of this hotel. We stay too many nights in normal hotels. It is a relaxed place. Not rushed. Excellent breakfast on their patio. Just the right amount of service. We usually had to work each morning in our room. Could get fresh coffer all day. WiFI works great. The staff is happy, aims to please and will do anything for you to make the visit what you are looking for. A 2019 return is already on our calendar.

jim r - Vancouver, Washington

TripAdvisor Traveler Review Rating Reviewed 3 weeks ago

This is by far my favorite spot in Palm Springs. I try to escape each winter and visit because I know it will not disappoint. The staff is very friendly and attentive. One of the staff members Alyssa greeted me each morning of my stay and even remembered my name. You could tell the staff all really enjoy being there and make you feel very welcomed. During this time of year they have heated steamy pools open 24 hours and if you book a room with a fireplace the staff will insure you have wood and a nice fire started in the evening. Korakia is for those who seek a unique experience and can appreciate the beauty of the architecture, the history and the cool authentic decor that makes you feel like you really transported to the Mediterranean.

jxanderson12 - Houston, Texas

TripAdvisor Traveler Review Rating Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Pensione is a nice word for this place because it certainly doesn't feel like a hotel. We stayed 4 nights (3 of which were part of a cycling tour). Everything is unique feeling and antique looking (though a bit worn out in some areas). There are many touches everywhere that are great attempts to make the place feel different and in large part it works well. We like the candles and fires a lot and the record players with classic albums in each room were a fun touch. The staff consists exclusively of nice, young women who act more like your hostess than hotel staff (which is great). This is a fairly expensive place, so while the tea service was nice, the very "low-end" included breakfast was a bit of a disappointment -- especially because only a few of the outdoor breakfast patio heaters worked (it wasn't excusable to not get gas bottles or fix the heaters over a 4 day period) and shivering while eating cold food was unnecessary. Perhams do a continental buffet in the library and perhaps warmer inner areas. General maintenance is needed as is attention to specific maintenance requests. For example, it took us 3 days of asking to have our bathroom light fixed (so bathroom by outdoor light for 3 days). We did like staying here, but it appears to be coasting on review of being "sexy" and "chic" from an earlier time.

B865GDJohn_ - Fort Lauderdale, Florida

TripAdvisor Traveler Review Rating Reviewed 4 weeks ago

As travelers, we always hope that a property will at least meet, if not exceed, the image presented in its advertising. This time, we were disappointed. The grounds are pretty, but not exceptional. In spite of the themed décor, ambiance is non-existent. It felt deserted, abandoned, as if you could wander endlessly without finding a staff member. The pools were clean and warm, but the building exteriors show obvious signs of deterioration, and the pool chair cushions were dirty. We found bottle caps and trash under the shrubbery on our room’s patio, items that should have been as clearly visible to housekeeping as they were to us. Other reviews commented negatively on the attitude of certain employees, and I completely agree with those sentiments. Just as exotic furnishings do not magically create ambiance, a pretty face with a forced smile speaking the correct words does not magically create hospitality. As we entered the lobby, the first person we encountered was a young woman stationed at the desk. She smiled on cue when we approached, and proceeded to check us in on the hotel’s laptop. Apparently, she had a problem with the computer. As she focused on resolving it, her demeanor changed. She disengaged from her interaction with us as completely as if we’d walked away. Distracted, her smile vanished, replaced by a mask of sheer annoyance. Ignoring the fact that we were three feet away, and close enough to see (and feel) her sudden shift in mood, she continued to fiddle with the keyboard in an obviously agitated manner. We stood there, waiting. She didn’t look up. An equally young but much more pleasant colleague passing through the lobby noticed her struggling and quickly stepped in to help. The situation was resolved, but between these two staff, it was clear neither was in charge. At breakfast the next morning, the server (same person who checked us in) walked over, said “good morning” in a flat monotone without making any attempt at eye contact, and plunked down two glasses of orange juice. As she proceeded to walk away again, we stopped her to ask if coffee was available. For reasons I cannot begin to guess, this clearly irritated and offended her. With a sour look, as if we had just asked a dumb question, she brusquely told us it was “self-serve in the lobby,” and marched away. Breakfast itself was a letdown, for several reasons. The only egg option on the three-choice list was huevos rancheros. Why not a Mediterranean-based selection, like a Greek omelet? After all, Korakia fervently brands itself “Mediterranean” and “Moroccan.” Just check their social media, website, and printed materials prepared for the rooms. That, plus breakfast, were the deciding factors in our choice of this property instead of another. So imagine our dismay when breakfast tranquility was marred, jarred, and otherwise ruined by the inexplicable and incongruous Mexican music playing on a loudspeaker the entire time. Mariachi, to be specific. First, it’s supposed to be quiet, as we were reminded in two emails and a phone call before we even arrived. Second, talk about a mood-spoiler! Festive Mexican music has its place, but early morning in a quiet Moroccan and Mediterranean-themed boutique hotel is NOT it. Your choice of specific room or suite here will profoundly affect your experience. We stayed in the Delphi Room, on the Mediterranean side. To clarify, Korakia occupies two sides of a quiet side street, within walking distance of many local attractions. The Mediterranean area is opposite the lobby, across the street. Parking in this neighborhood is scare, and we were shown the Korakia-only parking spaces during our tour. But, since nobody bothered to record our vehicle information when we checked in, I have no idea how or if Korakia works to ensure they are used by guests only. The Delphi Room is an end unit, adjacent to the walkway where a constantly bubbling fountain sits directly outside, creating pleasant background sounds. A wrought iron lattice encloses the patio on three sides, including the adjacent patios. The latticework is open, with wide spacing between the slats providing an unobstructed view of people on the patio next door, and even those further down. There is a mountain view, but the first thing you’ll notice are cars parked up against the outside wall. You can call it rustic, you can call it quirky, but you cannot call the Delphi Room spacious. The high wood ceiling tricks you, and at first, it doesn’t feel cramped or claustrophobic. But minutes later you’ll be colliding like bumper cars while trying to unpack. Minimal and poorly-utilized floor space, a normal sized closet with its space squandered by a mini-fridge that could have gone elsewhere, an antique dresser with flimsy drawers whose shelves were blocked by an ancient wicker chair, and no luggage rack equals literally no place to put anything. Sparse shelf space in the bathroom, awful lighting by which to do your makeup, a single nightstand instead of two, and not enough outlets are among the other frustrating deficiencies. The room’s unfinished and wildly uneven stone floor has rough edges protruding ¼” or more. The result? Stubbed toes and tripping, even with thick slippers. The temperature inside the room was pleasant, and we were able to enjoy the nice warm pool the next morning. The bed was comfortable, and the neighborhood is quiet at night. The softly bubbling fountain provided much-needed white noise, but couldn’t drown out the sounds of coughing, snoring, and a wake-up alarm early the next morning coming through the wall from the adjoining room. Perception is reality, as they say. An unpleasant staff member with extremely poor interpersonal skills plus a ridiculously small room, compounded with disappointment at breakfast, all add up to an unsatisfying guest experience. Given the numerous options available nearby, this was a poor value at $250 for one night. But if we’d booked for two nights, I would have happily eaten the cost and found other lodging.

FallsGirl0709 - Temecula, California

TripAdvisor Traveler Review Rating Reviewed 1 month ago

We really LOVE this place. I didn’t know what to expect from the pics but it was everything I was hoping it would be. It really feels like you’re in Greece on the Mediterranean side. The other portion of the property is across the street and has a Moroccan theme. The rooms are all in separate buildings and have a living room, a little kitchenette and a beautiful big bed with white gauze curtains everywhere. It’s so magical!! Our room faced the heated salt water pool and there were 4 sets of French doors to open!! It’s fantastic. Plus the bathroom is all stone so it feels like a rustic retreat. Very clean, very authentically rustic and the grounds are enchanting. Breakfast is included in the room rate and it is served outside in a lovely courtyard with fabulous music playing and the sound of water in the fountain. So quaint and perfect. Breakfast was delicious both days with three choices of dishes and juice and coffee or tea. Then in the late afternoon, they serve hot mint tea in the lobby. Our room had a record player and a choice of LP’s to choose from. No TV or phones so you have to entertain yourselves. There is WiFi. At night they light tons of votives everywhere around the property and show movies outside. I highly recommend this place if you can get past the idea of a traditional hotel. It’s really special, but not for everyone. No children allowed so it’s very quiet and a very adult vibe. We loved Allissa. She gave us dinner suggestions, a tour of the property including the history of the place and she’s been there for 11 years so she really loves it and it shows. We cannot wait to return!!

K M - Los Angeles, California

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