La Quinta’s Waldorf Astoria Driving Experience Pulls Out All the Stops

  • Ferrari 458 Italia Spider
  • McLaren MP4-12C
  • Porsche 911 GT3
  • La Quinta Resort & Club
  • La Quinta, CA

La Quinta Resort & Club in La Quinta, Calif., has added a fast and furious facet to its already sporty list of amenities—the 2015 Waldorf Astoria Driving Experience. Guests are welcome to take the wheel of three supercars, a Ferrari 458 Italia Spider, a McLaren MP4-12C, and a Porsche 911 GT3, under the watchful eye of the professional racer Didier Theys.

Each car represents its respective marquee’s automotive masterwork; unique studies in power, performance, and singular style. Ferrari’s Pininfarina-designed pony packs a 4.5-liter V-8 engine and can accelerate from zero to 62 mph in 3 seconds while the driver is ensconced in an interior crafted to specifications from Formula 1’s famed Michael Schumacher. The carbon-fiber McLaren manages to motor from zero to 100 mph in 6 seconds and can reach 205 mph, propelled by a 592 hp, twin-turbo V-8. And the rear-engine rocket from Porsche features a flat-6—with 325 ft lbs of torque—and a top speed of 195 mph.

After Theys (who has 61 podium finishes in races around the world) delivers an instructional briefing on the cars, participants will be able to punch it on a designated course that covers a variety of terrain—including extended straightaways and steep switchbacks—accentuated by the dramatic high desert. Drivers will have the opportunity to try each vehicle within the duration of the 2.5-hour session, which is offered three times per day.

When finished putting pedal to the metal, guests are invited to roll in to La Quinta’s spa to experience its new 100-minute High Performance Facial and Timeless Massage treatment (for an additional $275) before parking for the night in a newly renovated casita that is included with the experience. Available on only four select weekends between October and December, the package starts at $1,218, based on double occupancy. (laquintaresort.com)

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