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Seeking Sun at the Morongo Casino

Originally Published in MotorHome Magazine

It’s been known as the oasis since the early 1900s, when the Southern
Pacific Railroad completed its route through the California desert. The
dry heat and clean air soon attracted folks with respiratory ailments,
and then in the late ’20s/early ’30s, Hollywood discovered the beauty
and privacy of the oasis, and Palm Springs was born. Today, however,
there is an oasis within an oasis, a resort so elegant, lavish and
exciting that it dwarfs much of what came before it. The Morongo Casino,
Resort & Spa, just 20 minutes west of Palm Springs, has literally
brought Las Vegas to Los Angeles. Reminiscent of the glory days of Sin
City, when the classic Sands and Desert Inn hotels and casinos enveloped
visitors in style and class – and pampered them with personal attention
– the Morongo complex entices RVers to sample world-class amenities in
an area already packed with attractions. Situated between the beautiful
San Gorgonio and San Jacinto mountains, the 44-acre resort features a
luxury spa, several four-star restaurants, glittering night life –
including such celebrities as Jay Leno and Santana – and one of the
largest casino floors on the West Coast.


This $250-million-dollar resort rises from the desert floor with its
27-story hotel tower topped by a two-story penthouse restaurant like a
mirage in a David Lean movie. The spectacular entrance alone is worth
the trip: The desert landscape bursts with vibrant plants and flowers
and fragrant blossoms, including sage, which is the name of the spa at
the resort. A canopy of color mesmerizes guests below as they watch the
natural sunlight gradually transition into an evening light show.

Stay at one of the dozens of nearby RV parks in the Palm
Springs vicinity, or consider a night out in one of the resort’s 310
luxurious rooms; if you do, take advantage of not just the exquisite
pool but also the lazy river and sandy beaches. Consider lunch at Belly
Italiano, with its delectable array of Italian-Mediterranean dishes;
have dinner at the Potrero Canyon Buffet, which offers five
international food stations. And then, for that late-night snack, treat
yourself to Serrano, the 24-hour cafe.

Considering that the Morongo casino is the premier recreational
gaming spot in California, you’ll naturally have to try your luck on
the floor: Select from among 2,000 slot machines; 70 table games
including Blackjack, Mini-Baccarat and California-style craps; plus, an
incredible 2,400-square-foot poker room serving 14 tables of 10 players

If for some strange reason, this oasis isn’t sufficient to keep
you satisfied, use it as your home base (discreet self-contained
overnight parking permitted) and explore the environs. Palm Springs
boasts almost 100 golf courses, a dozen stimulating museums, the
fabulous Palm Springs Follies in the historic Plaza Theater, the Aerial
Tramway, gardens and the Desert IMAX Theater. Nearby, you’ll also
discover the Cabazon Desert Hills Outlets and Hadley Fruit Orchards.
This is an A+ winter vacation, without requiring a parka!

The Morongo Casino, Resort & Spa is owned and operated by
the Morongo Band of Mission Indians, a federally recognized tribe. As a
result of its gaming operations’ success, the tribe has eliminated
welfare on the reservation and contributes to the community. For more
information on the resort, call (888) 667-6646 or go to http://morongocasinoresort.com. For campgrounds in the area, go to 2005 Trailer Life Campgrounds, RV Parks & Services Directory.

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