Summertime is my favorite season of the year in Rancho Mirage. Hot? Yes it’s hot but think of it this way – summer is our winter. We get up early and play, hole-up in the middle of the day to read a book and emerge in the evening for more enjoyment. No snow to shovel, no salt damage on our cars, no bundling up to go out – just tee shirts, shorts and flip flops needed here. And it’s peaceful!

Summer time is POOL TIME! Floating on my back with the night stars blazing overhead, the moon rising over the distant mountains and a gentle breeze swaying the palm tree fronds is heaven for this swimmer. Warm water and warm air; no chilly wind triggering a towel grabbing run for the showers here.

First stop on our pool tour is Agua Caliente Casino Resort Spa. A pool or an oasis? You decide if the Resort Casino’s intriguing call to action is an oasis or a pool. Let’s see: Fifty thousand square feet of water and poolside luxury that would capture Julius Caesar’s attention. Eight cabanas equipped with phones, TVs, misters, ceiling fans, mini fridges. Two of the cabanas have their own private jetted spas reserved for high rollers in need of a little rejuvenation before hitting the tables again. With a pair of board shorts and time to chill, Caesar might have neglected Cleo. Come on Julius, Cleo can chill, let’s grab a beer at the full service wet bar.

Nearby find The Westin Mission Hills Resort & Spa and next door The Westin Mission Hills Resort & Villas. Both resorts share a myriad of amenities and both boost multiple beautiful swimming holes. The main Las Brisas Pool at The Westin Resort & Spa has a free form shape and is surrounded by fabulous lush landscaping and cabanas that can be reserved for a family home base or a romantic pool-side couples retreat. A sixty foot waterslide delights kids while their parents cozy into the two spas. Average pool temperature is a refreshing 82 degrees. Full bar service is available from the palapa-styled pool bar – keep ’em coming! The La Paloma Pool is reserved only for adults and the Las Hadas Pool is tucked deep in the complex for the most reserved sun worshipers who cherish nothing more than poolside solitude with a good book.

SPLASHTOPIA! At the Rancho Las Palmas Resort & Spa the notion of pool has been taken to the galactic level. Almost two acres of aquatic fun and thrills for youngsters and their folks include a 425 foot lazy river, two 100 foot waterslides that spin down a Matterhorn styled peak with a Jacuzzi sidecar, a sandy beach area for tots, water play zones with fountains and water sprinklers and a huge – did I say huge – swimming pool. Splash Grill serves up all the noshes and drinks you crave. Reserve a chaise or a cabana and settle in for a day or a week of perfect fun in the sun. If quiet calm without the squeal of kiddies is what you need your choice should be the Tranquility Pool. Here only adults can gather and swim and read and think and whisper sweet nothings into their partners ear. Better yet, for total tranquility, after a treatment at Spa Las Palmas settle into a chaise at the Spa Pool and laze the day away.

There’s big pool at the Hilton Garden Inn and a smaller dip at The County Inn & Suites by Carlson.

RM