Desert Hot Springs is a city in Riverside County, California, United States. The city is located within the Coachella Valley geographic region, sometimes referred to as the Desert Empire. The population was 25,938 at the 2010 census, up from 16,582 at the 2000 census. The city has experienced rapid growth since the 1970s, when there were 2,700 residents.
It is named for its many natural hot springs. It is one of several places in the world with naturally occurring hot and cold mineral springs. More than 20 natural mineral spring lodgings can be found in town. Unlike hot springs with a high sulfur content, the mineral springs in town are odorless.
The only people residing in areas north of Palm Springs prior to the 20th century were the Cahuilla Indians in the village of Seven Palms. Although Cahuilla people never settled permanently in today's Desert Hot Springs, they often camped here during winter times due to the warm climate.
According to early homesteader and writer Cabot Yerxa in his newspaper columns published in The Desert Sentinel newspaper, the first homesteader in the area of the city of Desert Hot Springs was Hilda Maude Gray, who staked her claim in 1908. Cabot Yerxa arrived in 1913 and soon discovered the hot water aquifer on Miracle Hill.