Palm Trees in Palm Springs

Vacation Inspirations Interview On Palm Springs

With so many things to do and see in Palm Springs it can be daunting planning a trip especially if you are limited on time. Also hunting around to find the best deals and the highest quality can prove to be a challenge. One of the reasons most people hire a travel agent is they simply don’t have the time or the knowledge to find exactly what they are looking for but that often comes at a high price especially if you are wanting to work with an expert travel agent.

There is a travel club we recently discovered when we came across the Vacation Inspirations facebook page and they are really changing the way we have always known the industry to work. At first glance we thought it was going to be another time share model since they invite you to a 1 hour presentation and offer you perks for attending. This sounded all too familiar but what we found when we dug a little deeper was surprising and actually refreshing for us especially for as long as we have been in the industry. We thought we had seen and heard it all.

We discovered that the owners actually came from the old time share model and saw the many issues with that approach so they set out to do something different.

One of the problems they identified was the high fees that people in the time share model continually have to pay. The costs continue forever and many people end up hoping someone will buy them out. They also noticed that members often did not know how to take advantage of their memberships. The new travel club model that they came up with sought to solve these problems along with many others they encountered over the years in order to provide a high quality service that was packed with value.

We decided to do our own digging to discover what members really thought about Vacation Inspirations and we started with Google. There are tons of 5 star reviews on their Google Business Page which you can read for yourself but as we searched farther back we were came across a good bit of negative reviews. At the time of the writing of this article Vacation Inspirations has a 4.8 out of 5 star rating based on 175 reviewers which is a very excellent rating so we decided to dig deeper on the people that were not happy to see if there was a common thread. What we found was that almost all of the people leaving the negative reviews had never actually used their membership or tried to take advantage of the benefits. We asked the owners about this and their response was quite interesting.

Owners Joe Shirley and Randy Gardner explained, “There was a time when there was no hand holding for newer members and explaining of the membership and process. During this time there were lots of negative reviews and cancellations. Vacation Inspirations now has a team dedicated to new members to help them take advantage and start using their membership. Members can call at any time and have a travel member services specialist take care of all of the details booking their dream vacation from offering suggestions, helping them research, putting together itineraries, finding the best rates, making sure they have the proper travel insurance, to explaining all the rewards they will receive after their trip is booked.” They were quick to own up to the fact that over the years they had encountered situations that were growing experiences for the company but that their goal has always been to become a better company and better serve their members.

The owners also emphasized the importance of being a home grown brand and in an effort to continually get better at serving the members have brought marketing, sales, and fulfillment all under one roof in an attempt to keep things local and integrated. By having all departments working closely with one another the aim is for a more consistent experience, and higher quality service. In fact they are currently in the middle of a rebranding project and they hinted at new things coming online in the upcoming year so keep an eye on their website for more information.

They also want to promote Charleston and give back to the community they love. In talking with one of the owners, Jeff Morris, about the marketers that interact with the public every day he stated, “Our marketers are the best out there! They know Charleston, they can talk to anybody, and love to help people find what’s happening locally. They are knowledgeable and ready to promote the city and all its many attractions, hotels, restaurants, etc. They are local people with fun personalities, and years of experience. They spread the word about local businesses and give away tours, restaurant coupons, and real value to interested travelers.”

In order for us to recommend any company for booking travel to Palm Springs we vet them very carefully so we asked to speak with Sandra Jamali who had spent time getting to know the ins and outs of the company so she could better perform her task as head of marketing. Below is our interview with Sandra.

How long have you been working with VI? It was 1 year in March that I joined the travel dept.

What excites you about this company? I am passionate about travel and enjoy working with members who appreciate the benefits. The travel dept. is also the best because it is the heart of the company.

What is a member travel club and how is it different from a timeshare? It is a membership based travel agency that plans vacations for its members. I believe a timeshare is more like buying vacation real estate and you pay for 1 week in a hotel/resort which you plan to use 1 time a year.

We offer 1 week rentals at top tourist destinations for wholesale price but main difference is we book all types of travel and give members rewards/rebate.

Who can book travel with you? Is it just for members? Yes, it is members who pay a fee to work with us.

How can someone outside of Charleston become a member? Tourists visiting Charleston can join a presentation in one of our locations and become members.

Why is joining your travel club any better than if I went online myself and booked my trip through expedia or other online travel agencies? I would have to say it is the white glove customer assistance of working with a real person on the phone who are expert travel agents. Once a member joins they have paid an upfront cost and then have access to our team as often and as many times a year as they like. Travel agents sometimes charge a fee to plan/research customized travel requests. We are also able to give our members rewards for travel requests not to mention the great pricing we are able to get.

What would be your top recommendation for visiting Palm Springs if you only had 5 days?

  1. The Living Desert Zoo & Gardens
  2. Indio Neighborhood-Coachella Canyon
  3. Cathedral City for the artists
  4. Tram up to Chino Canyon
  5. Joshua Tree National Park
Joshua Tree at night

So is there any way you can bend the rules for me to become a member from here in Palm Springs or do I have to travel to Charleston? At the moment you have to come in person. We get asked this question a lot and are considering some options but quite honestly we love our home city and you will too if you come and visit.

Ok Sandra. Thanks for taking the time to speak with us.

There you have it folks. If you are in Charleston make sure you look them up and if you join have them help you plan a trip to Palm Springs!

Hogs Breath Inn

Hog’s Breath Inn

Thanks to a personal relationship between Kaiser Restaurant Group patriarch Kaiser Morcus and actor/director Clint Eastwood, the company acquired the famous Carmel, CA restaurant in May of 2000. In August 2003 the company launched “the desert Hog” on the top floor of the then-new Old Town La Quinta shopping village where it offers casual indoor and outdoor dining with clear views of the nearby Santa Rosa Mountains.

Serving lunch and dinner seven days a week, the cuisine is California-style, featuring top quality meats, seafood, pasta, pizza, and salads. The carefully crafted wine list features some of California’s best wines and the lively Saloon is a popular gathering spot with a special Happy Hour nightly.

For more information visit https://www.hogsbreathinn.net/

Indian Wells Resort

Miramonte Resort & Spa

Escape to one of Southern California’s most Luxurious Spa resorts, Miramonte Resort & Spa. Located in the heart of the Palm Springs Valley in beautiful Indian Wells, the resort boasts luxurious hotel accommodations in a unique, Mediterranean village inspired setting. This is also an excellent location if you are looking for world-class golf and tennis, all while enjoying captivating views of the Santa Rosa Mountains.

indian wells resort and spaBe swept away by romantic architecture, Italian fountains, fine-crafted stonework, tranquil piazzas, exceptional luxury spa facilities and impeccable service. Nestled at the base of the Santa Rosa Mountains, views throughout the resort are awe-inspiring, serving as an impressive backdrop to Palm Springs’ most luxurious resort.

For more information visit their website at https://www.miramonteresort.com

palm desert golf course

Marriott Desert Springs Palm Course

Hollywood stars and golf pros have been teeing off of Palm Desert Golf Courses for years and for good reason.

True to Ted Robinson’s signature style, there’s more water on our beautifully landscaped championship courses than you can shake a 9-iron at. Enjoy the camaraderie of individual golf or group tournaments set against the towering mountains, rolling greens and sprawling lakes.

For more information visit their website.

Things To Do In Palm Springs

If you are looking for things to do in Palm Springs look no further. There is always something fun and exciting going on or the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful sunny weather and lounge around doing next to nothing. The choice is yours! Here are some great events coming up and recently past.

March 2, 2019
Rhythm, Wine and Brews Experience
http://www.rwbexp.com/

February 14- 24 2019
Modernism Week
https://www.modernismweek.com/

February 2, 2019
Art on Main Street
https://oldtownlaquinta.com/our-events/art-on-main-street/

 

Indian Canyons Golf Resort

Indian Canyons Golf Resort

Indian Canyons Golf Resort is surrounded on three sides by breathtaking, colorful, natural mountain vistas, sheltered from the wind and nestled at the base of the San Jacinto Mountains. This 36 hole resort is uniquely positioned to offer you an unrivaled golf experience in the Greater Palm Springs Area. It opened in 1961 when there was not much there besides sand but after partnering with the Palm Springs Racquet Club celebrities started coming and the resort popularity grew by leaps and bounds. Hollywood celebrities like Frank Sinatra, Bob Hope, and Jackie Gleason. Former U.S. Presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower, Lyndon B. Johnson and Ronald Reagan also walked these fairways. The course is set on 550 acres on the Agua Caliente Indian Reservation. Indian Canyons Golf Resort is a truly unique jewel.

Visit Indian Canyons Golf Resort

Soak City Water Park

Soak City

Knott’s Soak City, Palm Spring’s only water adventure park, is 15 acres of water rides and attractions. Soak City guests can catch a wave in the 750,000-gallon Tidal Wave Bay wave pool or enjoy one of the seven new slide experiences added in 2017. The Sunset River is no little river and if you prefer shooting water guns you will find 200 of them in the three-story Beach House along with other other interactive surprises. There is plenty of fun for toddlers, kids, teens and adults. The park is open seasonally from mid-May to early September on select days so be sure to check their website.

Renaissance Esmeralda Resort

Renaissance Esmeralda Resort & Spa

Nestled at the base of the majestic Santa Rosa Mountains in the exclusive community of Indian Wells, the luxurious Renaissance Esmeralda Resort & Spa is the place to share your passion for discovery. Offering unparalleled service and all the amenities of a world-class resort, Esmeralda invites you to indulge your every whim.

Featured in Condé Nast Traveler’s 2007 Gold List of “World’s Best Places to Stay” and Travel + Leisure’s “500 Greatest Hotels in the World,” The resort includes Spa Esmeralda, designed to nourish your soul. Marble floors, glass corridors and the sounds of a trickling stone fountain greet you. From that moment on, a transformation begins to take place. Gaze at the alluring desert landscape from the tranquil Spa Garden and soothe away the day’s stress under a therapeutic waterfall spa. This is Spa Esmeralda. This is Paradise.

Visit Their Website

Kaiser Grill

Kaiser Grill

Kaiser Grill was the very first restaurant that Kaiser & Lee Morcus created in the Coachella Valley and it was a smash hit from the day he opened its doors in Palm Desert in 1992. Mr. Morcus, a native of Lebanon, had owned and operated successful restaurants and hotels in Colorado before he retired to the Palm Springs area in 1976 intending to play a lot of golf and just enjoy the desert climate. He tired of this life of leisure. He wanted to be working again and he recruited his oldest son Lee, who was operating restaurants in Chicago, to join him. There weren’t many notable restaurants in the area back then, and his concept for a casual but upscale bar and grill proved to be exactly what the neighbors were craving. With whole chickens cooking on spits in plain sight and a contemporary California menu with affordable prices, along with a comfortable, clubby décor, Kaiser Grill set a new standard for desert dining.

Eventually 1998 they decided to open a second outpost 12 miles west to the heart of Palm Springs’ famed Palm Canyon Drive, where it thrives today. The Palm Springs Kaiser Grill offers an outdoor patio where diners can observe the passing parade of shoppers and tourists, as well as a spacious interior dining room and bar. Serving lunch and dinner, the menu still reflects contemporary California cuisine with an abundance of fresh vegetables, antibiotic- and hormone-free prime Angus beef, fish and shellfish, and pizzas baked in a wood-fired oven.

Visit the website: http://www.restaurantsofpalmsprings.com

Palm Springs Poolside

Palm Springs Vacations

Palm Springs Vacation Discounts highlights the best vacations packages to Palm Springs and the surrounding California desert resort cities of Rancho Mirage, Palm Desert, Indian Wells, La Quinta, Indio and Cathedral City.

Palm Springs is known as a premier travel destination for its relaxing environment and gorgeous weather. It almost never rains so you are guaranteed sunshine on your vacation. Palm trees are in abundance, restaurants are top of the line, there are plenty of boutique shops to peruse, along with plenty of art galleries.

Many people travel to Palm Springs for the events such as Coachella Music Festival, Palm Springs International Film Festival, Modernism Week, the Desert Classic Golf Tournament, and the Palm Desert Food & Wine Festival to name a few.

You will not run out of things to do in Palm Springs. If golf is your thing this is the perfect travel destination in the summer or the winter with more than 100 local golf courses to choose from. Whether you prefer arts and culture, shopping, or relaxing at a spa you have the best of the best at your fingertips.

We have the best information online for vacation packages and vacation ideas at affordable prices.