In an undated handout photo provided by Roadies, a tricked-out tour bus in Joshua Tree National Park in California. The new company's buses, which come with sleeping berths, lounges, flat-screen TVs and showers, will transport up to 11 travelers on seven-day itineraries between San Diego and Las Vegas via Los Angeles, Palm Springs, Joshua Tree National Park and the Grand Canyon. (Roadies via The New York Times)
Photo: ROADIES/NYT
Photo: ROADIES/NYT

See the sights in the Southwest and California like a rock star

The kind of tricked-out buses associated with rock-star tours will drive a new kind of road trip with the debut of the travel company Roadies. 

Roadies buses, which have sleeping berths, lounges, TVs and showers, can transport up to 11 travelers on seven-day itineraries between San Diego and Las Vegas.  

The buses will make stops in the Los Angeles area, Palm Springs, Joshua Tree National Park and the Grand Canyon.  

The land cruise, which travels at night, arrives each morning in a new spot, allowing passengers to leave the bus for excursions like hiking, surfing and horseback riding.  

“We see it as an opportunity to reinvent the great American road trip,” said Mark Wills, who founded the company with Lee Roth.  

The company plans to work with a hotel or resort in each destination that will act as a base camp for exploration and offer access to amenities.  

While near Los Angeles, for example, Roadies buses will park at the 

Sunset Marquis resort in the city of West Hollywood, California, giving travelers access to its swimming pools, spa, restaurant and bar.  

For an additional fee, they can book a session at Nightbird Recording Studios on the property, where Elton John, Aretha Franklin and Kendrick Lamar have recorded.  

Trips are aimed at younger travelers with an interest in sharing intimate trips with like-minded adventurers.  

A guide, called a “tour manager,” travels along on the trip, providing advice, getting travelers on excursions and organizing group dinners and entertainment.  

The bus, furnished with the comforts of a hotel suite, is a big part of Roadies’ appeal.  

The company providing the buses has also handled transportation for touring performers like Paul McCartney and Katy Perry, according to Roadies executives.  

“There’s something magical about a rock-star bus and the stories that are told about it, and we wanted to capture that,” Roth said.  

Weeklong trips begin in June and start at $1,299.

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