Perched just beyond the San Benito County line sits an oasis in the middle of golden rolling hills and clear blue skies. Down Little Panoche Road, Mercey Hot Springs officially resides in Firebaugh, part of Fresno County.
The resort and spa uses the location’s geothermally heated, mineral-rich water to create a place of relaxation and rejuvenation.
With a range of overnight options and activities, visitors can soak in antique clawfoot tubs or play disc golf along the property’s hiking trails.
Guests staying overnight can choose to camp on-site with their own gear or rent one of three types of accommodations that include single-room wood cabins, two airstream trailers, and one fully-equipped modular home.
The atmosphere and its appeal are created not just by the resort’s amenities, but by the location’s natural beauty and feeling of isolation.
Hugging the Diablo Range, depending on the season, one can see golden grass like a velvet carpet or wildflowers blanketing the hills.
Away from the light pollution of more urban areas, the resort also provides stargazing opportunities for those in search of unobstructed views.
“The night sky is amazing,” said Mercey Hot Springs employee Kenda Saunders.
Mercey Hot Springs is also home to 30 to 40 species of birds, according to employee Rick Saunders. Birders are drawn to the site hoping to see an owl, or the bright oranges and purples found on the chests of some species.
“There is wildlife all around you,” said Hollister resident Randalynn Quesada. “I like how remote and serene it is. There are jack rabbits hopping by as you are in the tubs.”
Back to the main grounds of the resort, visitors can sit in the shade of pepper trees and palms.
The main soaking area consists of a pool and custom-made tubs that are spacious enough even for taller guests. While all tubs receive their water from the natural hot springs, the resort also offers cooler water.
“It is individualized,” said Quesada. “I like that they have the individual tubs that you can sit in and make the water exactly to the temperature you want.”
At the top of the property is a second set of clawfoot tubs that are fenced-in for privacy, as clothing is optional for guests at this spot.
For a more secluded setting, the resort also has private tub areas for rent.
Whether soaking in the main area or behind the fence of the clothing-optional section, privacy and relaxation are the resort’s main focus.
“If you want a relaxing time to get away from the pressures of life, we have this right in our backyard,” said Quesada.