Many hotels and resorts offer access to their pools, spa and other amenities to those who aren’t overnight guests. Through outside services such as ResortPass, DayAxe, Daycation and Resort for a Day locals and travelers can lounge by the pool for a day.
Two words. Day. Pass. So whether you’re looking for a pool day or a spa day, you can make the most of your mini getaway with a day pass to some of the areas best hotels from Orange County and San Diego to LA, Palm Springs, Santa Barbara and more.
What Is A Day Pass?
If hearing the words day pass makes you think more of a trip to a theme park than a hotel stay, don’t worry. You’re not alone. But there are a growing number of luxury hotels and resorts that do offer a day’s worth of access to their property and a lot of the nifty stuff on it.
A day pass is an easy and affordable way to give yourself a little something special. Buying one gives you access to five-star rated hotels and the amenities that they usually restrict for guest use only.
For example, the Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach Resort & Spa offers a selection of day passes through ResortPass.com. A Day Pass includes pool and jacuzzi access throughout the resort and entry to Slyder’s Waterpark. Plus, day pass holders also have beach access, kids activities and bike rentals, discounted valet parking, complimentary wi-fi, and the ability to purchase food and drinks at the resort. If a pool day isn’t on your agenda and you’d rather have access to the spa, book a spa day pass. This gives pass holders access to the Hyatt’s beautiful spa including the indoor whirlpools, waterfall showers, sauna and steam room, relaxation lounges, fitness center, and food and drink services. It also gives you 15% off all spa services and complementary valet parking for a designated period of time. You can even lounge like a VIP with a cabana day pass.
Searching for a pool day pass in Palm Springs? A Spa day pass in Santa Barbara? It’s all possible with a resort day pass.
Here’s a few more reasons for you to grab a day pass to a local luxe or boutique hotel…
- You’re tired of fighting the crowds at fun but crowded water parks.
- You don’t want to deal with sand in your clothes (and car) or the hassle that beach parking can be.
- You want a quiet retreat to relax and recharge for the day, either by yourself or with a friend.
- You want to experience the luxury of a top-rated resort without paying a top-rated price.
- You’re only in town for a day (this is aimed more at people on a day trip or taking a day ashore while on a cruise).
- You’re in Orange County and staying at an AirBNB or other accommodation which doesn’t have the beach access or pool access you’re looking for.
There are many hotels and resorts throughout Southern California that offer their amenities via Day Pass, many beginning at $20 per person. However, prices vary by season and availability. And while most day pass destinations are located in vacation spots known for their warm weather, like sunny southern California, you can pick up a day pass to hotels in other high-trafficked cities as well, such as New York, DC, Chicago, and Atlanta.
Know Before You Go
- Research the cost of parking before you go. If your pass doesn’t include discounted valet parking, you could end up paying full price, which for some resorts can be as high as $50 per day or more.
- Even though you have access to the food and drink options on site, you still have to pay for them. While you may be able to bring in a few snacks and water bottles, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to bring in a full days worth of food. Before choosing your day pass, be sure to budget for food and drink purchases for your daycation.
How to Find A Day Pass
Resort day passes are relatively easy to get. A few clicks on the Internet or an easy phone call will score you an affordable ticket to fun and relaxation.
If you already know which hotel you’re interested in getting a day pass for, you can simply hit the internet, pull up one of the aggregate sites for day passes, and place your order through them.
This method works well for the larger resorts with better known attractions.
Pro-Tip: Day passes are very affordable ways to treat yourself to a bit of luxury living, but if you’re planning on bringing a group and paying for all the passes on your own, it might actually be worth it to just book a room for a day. Your resort concierge will be happy to help you figure out which method will save you money.
We have to point out that not every hotel will be on these day pass sites, or maybe you’re looking at a hotel that just opened up a day pass option. In that case, you might still be able to take advantage of their amenities… just call the front desk and ask if the hotel has a Day Pass available. They’ll be able to give you all the information you need.
It’s still easiest, of course, to click through an aggregate site like ResortPass.com or Daycationapp.com. Sites like these will let you browse through all the hotels in their network, see what they offer, and what prices are available. This is the best option to take if you don’t know what hotel you want to play at, or if you’re not sure what amenities they offer. Remember to always read the fine print on your pass, so you aren’t surprised by any hidden fees or limitations (if there are any).
Ready to start searching yet? We’re here to help!
We’ve researched our favorite Day Pass site options for you, so all you have to do is click the link and browse to find a well-priced mini vacation.
Pro-Tip: Nobody likes a crowded email inbox, but it’s worth it to sign up for the sites’ email list. You’ll get discounts and money-saving tips and tricks in your inbox from time to time. There’s no pressure, and you can unsubscribe whenever you feel like it.
Prices begin at $20 for a Resort Pass on ResortPass.com
This site gives you a nice set of photos of the pool and surroundings, a quick graphic on what’s available on the pass, and a price range. If you haven’t been to that particular hotel before, you can also read reviews on the location and the services. Book a day pass, a spa pass, or reserve a cabana with just a few clicks of the mouse.
Available locations include:
- Andaz San Diego
- Coronado Island Marriott Resort & Spa
- Hyatt Regency Mission Bay Spa & Marina
- Paradise Point Resort & Spa
- Hyatt Regency Indian Wells Resort & Spa
- Omni Rancho Las Palmas Resort & Spa
- The Westin Mission Hills Golf Resort & Spa
- Kimpton Rowan Palm Springs Hotel
- The Saguaro Palm Springs
- Hyatt Centric Santa Barbara
- The Kimpton Goodland
- W Los Angeles West Beverly Hills
- Pasea Hotel & Spa Huntington Beach
- The Waterfront Hilton Beach Resort
- Newport Beach Marriott Hotel & Spa
Prices start at $15 for a day pass at DaycationApp.com
Daycation App is a site that lets you purchase a day pass for yourself or as a gift in select cities all across the world, not just here in beautiful Southern California. They have a super-responsive chat helpline and a carefully curated list of eight top-tier hotels to choose from.
Available locations include:
- Monarch Beach Resort
- Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach Resort & Spa
- Cape Rey Carlsbad
- The Beverly Hilton
- Margaritaville Hollywood Beach Resort
- W Hollywood Hotel
- Marina del Rey Hotel
- Belmond El Encanto Santa Barbara
- Renaissance Indian Wells Resort & Spa
- Avalon Palm Springs
Specializing in “day passes to the best resorts”, this site is exclusively for passengers on cruise liners. They’ve already worked out the details that a cruise passenger needs to pay attention to so that you can order through them and have a seamless day at your chosen resort. Just have your cruise information ready so you can book the extra goodies you want for your day ashore. You’ll need:
- The name of your cruise line
- The name of your cruise ship
- The date of your cruise
- The length of your cruise
Destinations available include:
- St. Maarteb
- Puerto Vallarta
- Cabo San Lucas
DayPass App lets you book more than a day at the pool or hotel water park. You can also book day access to a resort’s fitness club, pool, day spa, private beach, or arrange cabana access for a family gathering. And since DayPass App is… well, an app, you can do all of this with ease from your phone.
Destinations vary based on availability.
DayAxe allows you to book passes based on the amenity you want to use at participating hotels. Choose from a Spa Pass, Fitness Pass, Cabana Day Pass, and more.
Pro-Tip: Some day passes entitle you to discount valet parking, discounted food, and complimentary wifi. Always check to see what the pass includes.
Participating destinations include:
- Lido House Newport Beach
- Indigo Los Angeles Downtown
- Custom Hotel Los Angeles
- The Ritz-Carlton Marina del Rey
- Sunset Tower Hotel
- Pala Casino Spa & Resort
- Hilton La Jolla Torrey Pines
- Coronado Marriott Resort & Spa San Diego
- Morongo Casino Resort & Spa
Ready, Set… Book!
Booking a day pass is fast and easy… in fact, the only problem you’re likely to have is deciding which of the five-star hotels you want to relax at (but honestly… isn’t that the kind of problem you’d like to have?)
A quick daycation, special day out, or fun indulgence with the kids is literally at your fingertips, and with a day pass, it’s also affordable.
So… ready for your daycation yet?
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Kelly Smith is a freelance writer living in Southern California with one dog, two cats, two guinea pigs… and the rest of her family. She writes about Orange County, faith, family, special needs and tea, and world-builds science fiction universes on the side. Find her at www.bluerosecopywriting.com.