For many, the Southern California desert is synonymous with Palm Springs. And with good reason. The city is arguably the Coachella Valley’s crown jewel. In fact, there’s so much going on in this seductive and serene desert sanctuary that it’s hard to know where to begin.
The natural beauty of the place is a good starting point. Here, mountains meet sky and sun. The natural aquifer underground feeds the green oasis. And whether it’s sunsets behind snowcaps or a warm summer breeze ’round midnight, there’s definitely magic, sensuality and true healing waiting to be discovered.
There’s real history, too. The region was initially settled by the Cahuilla Indians. By the 1920s, Hollywood had invaded, with stars and their entourages fleeing to the peaceful desert to party in private sans prying eyes. Tinseltown glamor really never left. Palm Springs still has it all—from food and wine options that rival that of any urban center to classic mid-century modern architecture that not only draws hoards of aficionados but is a magnet for experts who write books about and photograph these private homes and public structures for posterity. Past and present meet here to make sunbaked memories that will last long into the future.
At bedtime, whether you choose one of the many storied inns at the foot of the mountains or a more sprawling hotel, the deliciously dry air will promote the good night’s rest you need to attack each new day and all there is to do.
Just some of the world-class attractions within city borders include a ride up the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway into the San Jacinto Mountains; tempting Lady Luck at the Spa Resort Casino; taking in the formidable collection at the Palm Springs Art Museum; shopping for antiques, midcentury modern collectibles, and furniture—or the latest fashions—at the Uptown Design District; taking in a show at the Palm Springs Follies; and experiencing the outdoor Thursday-night bazaar known as VillageFest.
Annual events each drawing a cast of thousands include the Palm Springs International Film Festival and its star-studded Awards Gala, Modernism Week, Desert Resorts Restaurant Week, the motorcycle weekend known as American Heat, the LGBT community’s Pride Festival, and the Festival of Lights Parade and Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony at the top of the tram.
Palm Springs. Those two words say it all. One of the first famous desert resort destinations in the world still ranks at the top of the heap.