One of Palm Springs’ most distinctive features is its vibrant, eclectic shopping district. Located along North Palm Canyon Drive, this center offers boutiques with mid-century modern flair, vintage fashions, and wellness and sensory-awakening products. Shoppers will find everything from coffee and books to trendy clothing and home goods. For those who love to dine out, there are numerous restaurants and upscale boutiques. The shopping district is also a popular nightlife destination.
Art lovers should not miss the VillageFest, a monthly art festival that takes place in downtown Palm Springs. This event, which is held the first Wednesday of each month, features local artists, musicians, and other attractions. The art walk showcases a wide variety of works, including photography, mixed media, and lithography. Art lovers will also enjoy the Palm Springs Vintage Market, held every first Sunday of the month at the historic Camelot Theater. Visitors will find a unique array of art pieces at the event, including pieces by Chagall, Picasso, Lichtenstein, and Gormley.
For those seeking to shop in a more casual setting, the Desert Hills Premium Outlets are a must-see. The sprawling complex is less than an hour’s drive from downtown Palm Springs. Visitors can also find dozens of outlet stores and restaurants along the highway. There is even a food court and cafes. There’s plenty of shopping to be done. There are plenty of golf courses to play, as well as great dining.
For a fun day trip, head to the nearby Joshua Tree National Park. The park is home to strange-looking plants, including the city’s namesake Joshua tree. Climbers and nature lovers alike can take advantage of the park’s desert habitats. There are even a number of stargazers and nature lovers. If you don’t want to venture far, you can always rent a bicycle. It’s a fun way to see the city in a new way.
In the early 1920s, Hollywood stars began adopting Palm Springs. The perfect weather conditions and laid-back vibe were important factors. Actors were required to stay in town for no more than two hours a day, so this location seemed ideal. In 1924, Frank Lloyd Wright built the Oasis Hotel. Other resorts soon followed, including the El Mirador. Several other celebrities began building homes in this area with revered architects.
While downtown Palm Springs has several bars, tiki lovers will feel right at home. Tiki-inspired cocktails go hand-in-hand with the mid-century design. Some of the most popular tiki bars include Tonga Hut, the city’s oldest tiki bar, and Toucan’s Tiki Lounge, a gay nightclub. Another option is Bootlegger Tiki, a small speakeasy located behind the Ernest Coffee Co., the intimate space boasts an extensive menu of tiki concoctions.
For more art-themed activities, visit the Palm Springs Art Museum, founded in 1938. Its collection is impressive, and includes works by renowned artists like Dale Chihuly and Thomas Moran. It also hosts Modernism Week, an annual celebration of the movement. Visitors can explore the museum’s permanent collection or take a free guided tour. During Modernism Week, the city will be hosting a festival celebrating the architecture of the mid-century style.