Have the Best Weekend in Palm Springs

things to do Palm Springs

If you don’t golf, you aren’t retired, and you are not an active member of the gay community, then Palm Springs might not immediately top your SoCal bucketlist.

However, unbeknownst to the general millennial population of LA, Palm Desert doesn’t only exist for the weekends of Coachella and Stagecoach.  Especially for a young couple looking for a bit of relaxed romance.

<<|| When to Visit ||>>

I originally posted this article on May of 2012, revised it in May of 2014, and revised again in May of 2018.  So clearly May, haha, or the counter month of October.  Perfect 80 degree days and slightly cooled night make spring and fall the ideal time to plan your getaway.  Otherwise, summer is scorching hot and winter can be down right bone-chilling cold.

<<|| Where to Stay ||>>

Where you stay will dictate your trip. Lounge by the pool, go to the spa, eat, drink, repeat.

The Parker – Unique, sexy, posh design with secret gardens and a drool-worthy spa. Decorated by Jonathan Adler, this place is a true adult oasis.  And completely dog friendly.

Ingleside Inn- A smaller, less hip, Parker Hotel located within walking distance to the shops and bars of downtown Palm Springs.  So quaint, so cozy, so inexpensive.

Colony Palm Hotel.  The Moroccan accents create a tranquil atmosphere.  Spring for the casitas and you’ll have a private sun deck with a soaking tub for two!
Saguaro. Definitely less romantic, but inexpensive fun in a good location for a group of friends.

<<|| Things to Do ||>>

  • Do Nothing.  My favorite Palm Springs weekends are the ones where I log 2 hours of fitness, 6 hours of sunbathing, 4 hours at the Spa, 4 hours for dinner and drinks, and then get a blissful 8 hours of sleep.
  • Architecture Tour – with an obvious stop by the infamous pink door for a photo op.
  • Bike Ride – Most hotels will have complimentary bike rentals.  Follow the signs for the downtown Palm Springs bike route.
  • Botanical Gardens – Who doesn’t love a gram-worthy garden stroll?
  • Thursday street fair – there is something for everything at this weekly festival.  I love the local artists, the jewelry, the fresh produce.  But what keeps us coming back is the Calipop kettlecorn.
  • Aerial Tram – amazing views and great hiking.  There is a small restaurant at the top, but it is too pricy for the low quality food they churn out.  I suggest bringing a picnic instead (perhaps some kettle corn from the fair if you have any left!).
  • Boutique Shopping plenty of fun little shops to poke in and out of.  I especially love the resale ones!
  • Rent a Cabana at the Ace Hotel, Riviera hotel pool, or the JW Marriot
  • Casino – a few great casinos call the desert their home. Agua Caliente just underwent a multi million dollar facelift but you’ll have an equally good time visiting Morongo.
  • Knotts Soak City – Sure, it’s ridiculous to go to a water park as an adult.  Ridiculously fun.  ATV rentals and mini golf also fall into this category.

<<|| What to Eat ||>> 

  • Copleys on Palm Canyon – The patio is melt-your-heart romantic and the food is melt-in-your-mouth delicious.
  • The Purple Palm – Situated in the Colony Palm Hotel the outdoor seating is right along the edge of the tranquil pool.   What makes this upscale trendy spot my favorite in Palm Springs is one particular dessert: the brioche bread pudding creme brulee.
  •  Mister Parkers – Inside the Parker Hotel.  Sink into the shadows at this posh and creative restaurant. Excellent wine list, and you really cannot go wrong with the seabass.  Only open Wed-Sun.
  • Melvyns – Nostalgia at its finest.  Enjoy a live pianist & pretend your part of the OG rat pack.
  • Normas – Inside the Parker Hotel.  Great outdoor brunch spot. Perfectly sceney.
  • Cheekys – Best breakfast in town.  Unfortunately, it’s no secret.  Expect ridiculously long weekend lines.
  • Koffi – Grab a matcha latte & croissant from this local chain.
  • Yogurt on Tap – It’s illegal to go to the desert and not get froyo. Or at least it should be.  If you’re more of a milkshake lover, try the date shakes from the Palm Springs fudge shop.

<<|| Roadtrip ||>>

  • Joshua Tree – Just an hour and a half drive and you’ll feel like you’ve entered mars. Spend the day in nature marveling at the vast views, rock formations and obscure trees and cacti.  Save time for an early dinner at Pappy & Harriets in Pioneertown and some live jams before heading back to your hotel in PS.
  • Salvation Mountain – A 2 hour+ drive will get you to this painted mountain exhibit perfect for #instagramenvy worthy photos.

 

<<|| Nightlife ||>>

  • The Nest. Probably the most ‘happening’ spot in PD. The crowd is definitely older but this place gets packed to the brim and there’s always live music.
  • Agua Caliente. Gamble + cocktails.
  • Costas Club. While I wouldn’t ever choose to go to the club inside the JW Marriot, I also can’t say I ever had a bad time when I’ve been dragged here on a bachelorette party.

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