California is a vast state of over 100,000 square miles, providing plenty of space for over 100+ hot springs resorts and spas. Situated in the heart of Southern California is one of the more unique experiences, known as the Murrieta Hot Springs, the beautiful home of a Christian retreat center.
With arched doorways and a red-tiled roof of Spanish-style architecture and surrounding palm trees, it fits perfectly with the Southern California vibe. There are many things to do at this resort, including four types of hot springs available year-round and outdoor recreational activities.
Initially, the Murrieta hot springs were discovered by Native Americans. They used the beautiful, all-natural springs for bathing, spiritual, and healing purposes. There is proof that Natives first came to the springs nearly 1,000 years ago. Sadly, the heritage sites were cleared in the 1970s to accommodate the current facilities.
In 1873, Juan Murrieta and his partners bought the land and changed the name to Murrieta Hot Springs. However, the springs were purchased by a German immigrant named Fritz Guenther in 1902. Fritz and his beloved family transformed the springs into the world-class health spa resort it is today. It became so popular that in 1950, the road leading to the resort was changed from Webster Avenue to Murrieta Hot Springs Road.
In the 1970s, ownership changed when the resort was sold to an attorney and real estate developer, Irvin Kahn. The resort went through an expansion and upgrade process before eventually being sold to Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa in 1995. The CCCM began a massive renovation focusing on preserving historical architecture, allowing this retreat to hold onto its old-world charm.
Since 1995, the resort has operated as a Christian retreat center and has only been open to Christian retreaters. However, most recently, in 2021, Olympus Real Estate Holdings LTD purchased the resort and officially named it “The Murrieta Hot Springs Resort & Spa.” They hope to transform the 46-acre site into the tourist destination it once was.
Hot Springs Pools
Here, the pools are only available to guests involved in the retreats. There are multiple sitting pools, a Roman spa, and a large swimming pool, almost Olympic-sized. Some are landscaped with rocks to make it look like you’ve wandered into its natural environment. The central Hot Springs Bath is a toasty 102℉ (39℃) and is the best spot for a soak.
Those interested in land-based activities can relax and wander around a manmade hot springs lake on the property surrounded by several walking paths. It contains various fish species, including bass and catfish. (Note: catch-and-release fishing only). Sunning decks and various athletic courts are also available for use.
For those simply looking to enjoy the gorgeous Southern California weather, engage in a game of tennis, basketball, or volleyball. When you’re done, enjoy the fully-functional recreational room. At the end of the day, sit back and relax with a delicious drink from the cafe and indulge in a new book from the bookstore.
There are currently four lodges sprawled out on the 46-acre resort, including The Fellowship Lodge, Stone Lodge, Lakeside Lodge, and Harmony Lodge. Rooms, food, drinks, and activities are available on the property and are all-inclusive for the price of the retreat.
Whether or not the names and facilities will change post-selling is yet to be determined by the buyer.
The Murrieta Hot Springs is easily accessible by car. It is located off of the I-215 freeway in Southern California. Simply take the I-15 Exit 1 for Murrieta Hot Springs Road. Continue on this path until you have reached the resort, approximately 1.5 miles from the exit.
Address: 39405 Murrieta Hot Springs Road, Murrieta, California 92563