It may not be home, but a posh little complex dubbed "Desert World" with a swimming pool, volleyball court and snack bar is giving American and British GIs a little slice of heaven after weeks of living in sand.

"I'd always heard of mirages out in the desert, so I figured this must be one," said Marine Lance Cpl. Ted Henson, 20, of Houston, as he sunned beside the swimming pool during a day of rest and relaxation. "It's really nice out here.""It's like putting a little piece of the States over here," added Marine Sgt. Lewis Perales, 24, of Detroit. "We come in, we see people just lounging around and partying and stuff like that. It was almost like being back home . . . just relaxing, chilling out, having fun."

The complex, lent to U.S. and British forces by the Saudi government, was opened to give troops a break from the tedium of working continuously since they arrived as part of the multinational force confronting Iraq.