last updated July 2019
Ah, Palm Springs.
I've been wanting to visit this pink-door boasting, desert oasis (often mentioned in conjunction with that music festival, you might have heard of it before, ya know, Coachella ;) ) for years, so when Ashley and I were planning our mini Cali road trip, we both jumped at the chance to make a stop here. And while it was cute and fun and all, the massive windstorm that took out most of the town's power (and consequently most of the town's restaurants and bars) while we were there, also made it difficult to enjoy PS to its full potential. We made the best of the situation (I mean, how could you not in a town with so many cute little houses and colorful doors?!) and still had a blast, but I already can't wait to go back and explore the town more (or, at least with more power). In the mean time, scroll on through for all the deets on where we stayed and ate, plus a few fun things to do in the area.
WHERE TO STAY
HOMES, HOTELS, HOT SPOTS + HIDEAWAYS
You guys. The interior at this place was serious goals. Like, if I could have moved in (or at least fit one of those pink chairs in my suitcase) I totally would have. I loved that each little nook within the main area of the hotel was decorated so uniquely, yet so beautifully. I honestly couldn't decide which was my favorite.
The property is massive and includes two pools, a beautiful spa and several restaurants and bars right on the property. However, it's also conveniently located right by a few other great spots (see "Eats" below), so it's a great location to be, whether you're looking to just post up and relax for a few days, or you're looking for a great base from which to head out and about.
We really took advantage of the pool during our stay, fully embracing the Sunday funday vibes with a pitcher of sangria (aka just what we needed after a stressful drive through LA traffic earlier in the day). We spent the weekdays by the pool in a bit more relaxed manner, simply catching some rays, doing a little work and trading boozy sangria fruit for a fresh fruit platter (So good!). In fact, we were so relaxed at the pool that we didn't even get to take advantage of the complimentary bikes that the hotel offers (Next time, for sure!).
Places I haven’t stayed but are on my list to check out: Sparrows Lodge, La Serena Villas, Ingleside Inn, Alcazar, Colony Palms Hotel, ARRIVE, Avalon Hotel, L’Horizon, Villa Royale, Kimpton Rowan, Sands Hotel & Spa, Holiday House, Del Marcos, Two Bunch Palms, The Parker
Workshop // This was one of the best meals I’ve had, not only in Palm Springs, but just in general. The atmosphere was great, the service was wonderful and the food was unique (without being too experimental) while also being incredibly delicious. We got the baby artichokes, blended burger (To-die for!) and the cod (Hello lavender glaze and crispiest skin ever!) followed by the pistachio mousse cake for dessert (perfectly light + fluffy and it came garnished with dried bougainvillea…like whaaaat??!). Highly recommend this spot!
Truss & Wine // This spot is a newer addition on the Palm Springs scene. It’s from the team behind Workshop (in fact, it’s located right in front of the restaurant), so it’s no surprise that the cocktails we had here we’re delicious. In fact, we both agreed that the drink I got, the Green Pfilter, was, hands dow, the best drink we had in Palm Springs.
High Bar // This is another new spot on the Palm Springs scene, located at the recently opened Kimpton Rowan. While poolside bars are nothing new out in the desert, this one just so happens to be on a rooftop. And the rooftop view is pretty much the only thing you should be coming here for. We weren’t overly impressed with the speciality cocktails, but they do have some great happy hour prices, the views are amazing and the staff is really friendly. In other words, come for sunset, stick to the happy hour menu and go somewhere else for food.
Bootlegger Tiki // A Palm Springs classic with all the tiki vibes and yummy tiki drinks to go along with it; did I mention they also have 2 happy hours every day?!
El Jefe // Their Taco Tuesdays (and Thursdays) is where it’s at! You can’t beat the prices and the tacos are so good! In fact, Dave and I both agreed that the fish tacos were some of the best fish tacos we’ve ever had (I know, we’re as surprised as you probably are by that statement, given that this spot is in the middle of a desert). Just an FYI, though, the place does get packed on their taco nights, so come early or be prepared to wait a bit.
Koffi // Yummy speciality coffee drinks, but I’d skip the food and, as a note, if it’s a weekend, allow plenty of time as the wait can be a bit long
King's Highway // Great for grabbing a small bite or some light snacks (The cauliflower is so yummy, but my favorites are the popcorn chicken and truffle fries!). Also, their watermelon margs are A++!
Reservoir //Cute spot, ok food, but works well for grabbing lunch (or a drink). Plus, there's free valet and an amazing ice cream shop (see next item on this list) right next door!
Ice Cream & Shop(pe) // The cutest little shop with the yummiest ice cream aka an Instagrammers dream.
Draughtsman // While this place came recommended, it wasn't first on our list of places to go. However, with everything else being closed from the windstorm, it was our only option for dinner our last night in PS. I'm actually glad we ended up going here as I thought the food was really tasty. We got short rib poutine (OH YES!) and a brussel sprouts salad that was super fresh and flavorful. They also had lots of great tasting beers (including several California based brews) available. Other things to note: they're great outdoor seating area, complete with fire pits. Even if it's just for a drink, I'd definitely recommend stopping by.
Places I haven’t eaten but are on my list to checkout: Sandfish Sushi, Seymour’s, Mr. Lyon’s, The Pink Cabana, The Barn, Mr. Parker’s, Copley’s, Melvyn’s, Rooster & Pig, Counter Reformation, Customs Coffee
Hang out by the pool…because it’s the desert, after all, so its, ya know, kind of hot. And besides, isn’t relaxing what you come to Palm Springs to do, anyways?!
Check out a pool party
Visit the Pink Door (because, did you even visit PS if you didn't visit this door?!)
Drive around and look at the architecture (you can find a self-guided tour here)
Moorten Botanical Garden (So many cacti!)
Take a ride up the aerial tramway (I know, this sounds super touristy. But there's a restaurant and bar at the top, so drinks + views = what's not to love?!)
Go for a hike