While Palm Springs may be best known for its sunny skies and daytime activities — such as hikes and walks, bike rides, shopping sprees, and leisurely swims in gorgeous pools —its nightlife is just as abundant and enticing. There are many fabulous bars and nightclubs open until the wee hours, but here are five ideas for your nighttime excursions — from the inspiring and romantic to the hopping and rocking.  These are all classic Palm Springs experiences.

The Purple Room Supper Club is one of my favorite spots for both stellar entertainment and delicious food and drinks. Located in the Trinidad Hotel, the Purple Room will carry you back to the rat pack era of the sixties, when celebrities such as Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, and Sammy Davis Junior crooned on its stage.  There are live shows every night (except Mondays) and all the ones I’ve seen have been wonderful.  On Sundays, owner Michael Holmes presents the Judy Show, a wildly popular parody of Judy Garland’s television show. Other nights feature a variety of talented performers. You can enjoy the shows while savoring classic supper club fare (shrimp cocktails, prime rib, etc.) and specialty cocktails that are reminiscent of days gone by.

Seymour’s is an iconic speakeasy secretly hidden within Mr. Lyon’s, a popular upscale steak house. The secret entrance and dimly lit ambiance harken back to Prohibition days when patrons could sneak in to enjoy illicit alcoholic beverages in an intimate setting. This clandestine bar serves original craft cocktails as well as classic Prohibition-era cocktails, such as my favorite, the Last Word, made with gin, Green Chartreuse, maraschino liqueur, and fresh lime juice. Vintage film clips above the bar add to the feel of days gone-by. This is the perfect place to wind down after a night on the town in Palm Springs. I’ve met the most interesting people at Seymour’s and the bartenders are personable and full of entertaining stories.

The Casablanca Lounge at Melvyn’s, adjacent to the charming Ingleside inn, is another special place where you can immerse yourself in the Hollywood glamour of the fifties and sixties. After a classic dinner at Melvyn’s, where tableside cooking is featured, you can adjourn to the lounge for an after-dinner drink, a lively piano bar, and perhaps a little dancing. You can just imagine Frank Sinatra and Marilyn Monroe sipping martinis at this favorite getaway from the hubbub of Hollywood.

Moxie’s on Sunday nights is the place to go for a rocking, hip drag show called Foxie at Moxie — widely celebrated as one of the best drag shows in Southern California (also featured during a Sunday brunch). The rotating, talented cast of gorgeous, talented queens will entertain you while you sip on craft cocktails and nibble on delicious appetizers.  There is also live music and dancing on Friday and Saturday nights. The casual rooftop bar is a great place to relax and soak up the midnight skies. For a memorable, authentic Palm Springs experience you can’t miss Moxie’s.

Toucan’s Tiki Lounge is another swinging nightclub where something is hopping every night of the week. This trendy spot features Palm Springs’ longest continuing drag show, Tomi Rose and the Playgirls. Each night has a different theme, such as Latin Fever, Jungle Boogie and Pop Diva Karakoke, and, if you’re lucky, the “Go Go Boys” dancers may make an appearance. The drink specials are creative and fun.

Walk of the Inns

The holidays have come to Palm Springs. Just because the weather is warm (and beautiful) doesn’t mean that you can’t find the holiday spirit. One way to do that is to go on the Walk of the Inns on December 12, where you can enjoy a festive holiday vibe while going on an exclusive tour of many of the area’s lovely small boutique hotels. This self-guided tour is free and runs from 6 to 9 p.m.

Amin Casa for Walk of the Inns

The charm of these small hotels, many of them historic, creates the warm ambiance of the holidays with their twinkling lights and other decorations. The mid-century modern, Spanish, and Mediterranean architecture of many of these hotels enhances their appeal.  You can just imagine how Hollywood celebrities in the 1940s and 50s savored the holiday season in these magical retreats away from the buzz of Sunset Boulevard.

Palm Springs Museum interiorIf you want to participate, you can begin your walk at the Palm Springs Art Museum or the Palm Springs Women’s Club, where you will receive a map of participating hotels, enjoy live entertainment, and pick up a flashlight to illuminate your walk. At these two locations, you can also drop off gifts and toys for the annual fundraiser, Well in the Desert, which donates gifts to those in need in the Greater Palm Springs area. What better way to get in the holiday spirit than by giving to others.

Casa Cody poolOne of the oldest inns participating in the walk is Casa Cody, which includes lovely villas and cottages that were originally built to house athletes during the 1932 Los Angeles Olympics. Other enchanting boutique hotels will be featuring a cheerful holiday atmosphere during the walk.

Village Fest Palm SpringsWhile you are walking around, you can also enjoy Palm Springs’ Thursday Night Village Fest for enticing food, entertainment, and shopping for the holidays.  There’s no better way to launch the holiday season in Palm Springs.

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Happy New Year!

The holiday season has gone its merry way, and we’re all feeling a little less flush in the pocket and a little more snug in the waistband. And that’s okay! We’ve got a full year to refill the coffers and pare down the pooch so screw it, let’s put it all on the back burner and have some glorious “it’s all about me” time basking in Palm Springs’ hospitality. You worked hard all year and you deserve a break, damnit. 

It’s hot tubbing, spa treatments, and hot toddies time! Come on. You know you wanna.

Before we get started, a wee bit of bad news: Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) has canceled its gala due to the new and highly unwelcome Omicron coronavirus variant. Keep an eye on PSIFF’s website for schedules and possible changes. So far, it’s the only event to (wisely) take that precaution, but these are strange times. Everything can change in a nano.

And now, it’s time to plan that “me” time!

Courtesy of PS Air Bar

Starting January 2, check out Disco Boozy Brunch at PS Air Bar. Recurring weekly on Sundays until March 27. Also, check out their Saturday night movies and grab yourself some fine wine from their downstairs parent, Bouschet. And by grab, I mean pay for it.

Desert Rose Playhouse has the world premiere of a new musical, Mid-Century Moderns. Set to the music of 1966, it’s the story of a plucky Wisconsin widow who transforms from frump to fabulous when she finds herself at the center of modernity in Palm Springs. Featuring the music of Tom Jones, Petula Clark, Lesley Gore, Frank and Nancy Sinatra, The Association, The Monkees, and many more. Sounds fun!

Palm Springs Air Museum has tons of great events coming up, including a show about Amelia Earhart. They also still have the Warbird Experience.

PS Underground 
Lots of fun. You never know what to expect. All of their shows are delightful, delicious, and wildly entertaining.

The Purple Room. Photo courtesy of The Purple Room

Purple Room offers entertainment six days a week, with ticketed shows on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Always Rat-Packy, and always classy. I’ll say it again: You’ve gotta see The Judy Show.

Palm Springs Tramway
Wear layers and heavy coats for the top.

Cascade Lounge at Agua Spa in downtown Palm Springs offers Caliente Comedy every Friday night, and Thursdays belongs to Jazzville.

Oscar’s is always coming up with innovative entertainment, so make sure to check their website. Every Sunday is the T Dance and Bitchiest Brunch.

Toucan’s Tiki Lounge is known for the city’s longest continuously running drag show, Tommi Rose & The Playgirls, as well as weekly theme nights, ranging from Latin Fever Monday to Neon Thursday to Dirty Pop Saturday. The club also brings in top tier cabaret and performance talent as part of Toucans Live on Stage.

CannaBUS Express Tours Canna-Sprinter. Photo courtesy of CannaBUS Express Tours

CannaBUS Express Tours
Greater Palm Springs is basically the Silicon Valley of cannabis. This is a very lively and informative 3-hour tour behind the scenes of the big business.

V Wine Lounge has music on Mondays, tacos and margaritas on Tuesdays, and karaoke on Wednesdays. Plus, they have a bomb selection of unusual wines. The lounge has a super cool vibe, so check it out.

Keep an eye out for a new franchise restaurant opening at 190 E. Indian Canyon later this month. Although these restaurants can be found all over Florida and in many other states, this will be the first I Heart Mac and Cheese in California. Comes with a side of Lipitor. (I’m kidding. It’s extra.)

Every Thursday is the Village Fest, every Saturday is the Certified Farmers Market, and the first Sunday of the month is the Vintage Market. If you’re craving vintage items on a day that is not the first Sunday of every month, then head on over to Sunny Dunes and Industrial Place and the Antiques Mall.

Oasis Music Festival is brand new event, and man do they have a lot of great acts during their five-day run. January 26 to 30 are the dates, and the venues are all over Palm Springs. What a great way to hear some great music and check off some of those venues you’ve been meaning to try. 

The Shag poster for Modernism Week 2022. Photo courtesy of Modernism Week

Notes to your future fun selves:

February is Modernism Week. It is likely many events have sold out (enthusiasts be enthusing), so get cracking on signing up. If you’re too late, you can always scratch your mid-mod itch with a copy of their new Shag poster here, or pop into Shag’s store to get an original. This is the fifth poster for Modernism Week by the local artist.

BNP Paribas Open is in March, so start planning now.

It’s never too early to prepare for Coachella or Stagecoach. Start booking rooms and getting tickets now. Looks like Coachella is already waitlisted!

Reminder: We love you and every single one of our neighbors, which means indoor events require a vax card. I got an electronic copy of mine here, then told Siri to take a screenshot and saved it in my iPhone’s Notes. Super simple.

Stay safe, and I hope to see you around town! 

“In August most of Europe goes on holiday.” ―Tony Visconti

In Palm Springs, just like Europe, many local shops/restaurants close, and take a vacation. That doesn’t mean we roll up the streets and close the blinds – we’re not a ghost town by any stretch of the imagination. We’re still mostly open, and have a ton of wonderful getaway hotels for you to have the perfect lazy break from the every day. Generally, prices go down a bit, so you can catch a real bargain.

And yes, Splash House is happening, but if you don’t already have tickets, you’re SOL. But I’ve still got some stuff you might fancy doing, so grab a coffee or a cocktail (I’m not judgy, it’s been a crap year.) and read on:

Gre Coffee House

Early mornings are still okay for a quick walk to a coffee shop; you can read about them here.

Want more than coffee? How about a breakfast-y, lunch-y, brunch-y situation? Here’s a great article about all of your brilliant choices. There is also newcomer, Sam’s Place, (now serving alcohol) where Ruby’s Diner used to be (2020 RIP).

Afterwards, wander up and down the strip. Most of it is enhanced with misters, so you’ll stay pretty cool while you do it. Don’t forget your hat and sunscreen though. And pay attention to where you’re walking, you might be stepping on one of your favorites on our Walk of Stars.

Stop in at Crystal Fantasy and have a reading (psychic, tarot, palm), or get a piece of jewelry with the latest TikTok must-have crystal, Moldavite. I’m told there’s a new girl in town that’s about to blow up on TikTok – you can ask their well-informed staff all about it, and what might work best for you. They also have woo-woo classes you should check out if you’re into the woo.

Time for a nap, right? How about a little sunbake (with sunscreen) by the pool. But not after 11 a.m., and don’t forget to hydrate your insides while you think about nothing until cocktail hour. We have some outstanding restaurants, and I’ve written another post about all of our international delights. We have outstanding American restaurants here, I just didn’t include them.

And…Wash. Rinse. Repeat. That’s what sane people do on a lazy getaway.

For those who are toeing the edge of sanity, aka anyone who needs to “do something”, then read on:

Shows:

PS Underground – see the full list here. They’ve got a new one, collaboration with Nickerson/Rossi Dance called Repertoire that looks pretty cool.

Music: 

Cascade Lounge in the Agua Caliente Spa courtesy of DJBaz

Wednesdays: Jazzville is back, and it has a new home! DJBaz brings in the best jazz players from around the country, so book these fabulous shows well in advance. At the Cascade Lounge in the Agua Caliente Spa in downtown Palm Springs.

Woody’s Motown Monday nights, Saturdays is the Stanley Butler Band, Sunday night entertainment is happening but so far it’s TBD.

Comedy!

August 6: Off The Charts Dispensary and Lounge brings nationally touring comedians to their Williams Road dispensary. “Raffles! Prizes! And Goodie Bags!” says the flyer. Seating is limited. Take an Uber. I don’t know the parking situation there. Nor is the event on their website. But I have a flyer, dammit.

The Cascade Room is not only bringing jazz, but also comedians to Agua Caliente Spa Casino.

8/20: Jamie Kennedy

8/27: Deon Cole

You’re A Star:

Snazzy Sassy Songsational Summerific Sing-a-Long

If you’re a fan of musicals, drag queens, gay choruses, and movie sing-a-longs, you’re gonna love this. The All-Summer Sing-A-Long at the Palm Springs Cultural Center.  If you’re into lifting your voice with like-minded people, this is church. Hosted by the fabulous Rosemary Galore. Book here.

We’ve also got the Retro Room, where you can Karaoke the night away, and it’s all about you, up on stage, belting your heart out.

Michael Holmes and the Purple Room are returning on 8/31. His Judy Show is my favorite show in Palm Springs – he plays Judy Garland, Bette Davis, and Pearl Bailey and he’s hilarious. When I told Michael I was looking forward to it, he said, “I’ve gained so much weight during Covid, I may have to do Totie Fields instead.” I’ve seen him, he looks great. Judy will go on, as will the other great acts he brings in from all over the country.

I can’t say this loud enough, BOOK FOR PRIDE NOW! Book your hotels, and book your seats for the parade. Roly China Fusion has the trifecta on parade day: Drag Queens, Drag Brunch, and a rooftop spot to watch the parade. Make reservations here. Or you can wing it on the street. But the hotels?  Do that for sure now.

On a personal note: We are a tight knit community. We know how lucky we are to live here. Palm Springs is a very special place. We care about each other. To that point: If you have been vaccinated, please, come enjoy the mask-free environment. If you haven’t been vaccinated, for whatever reason, I have a 93 y.o. uncle I’m trying to keep alive and thriving, so please wear a mask.

 

Red Carpet Run

Start the new year off with some fun events in Palm Springs!

Backstreet Art District

Artwalk at the Backstreet Art District     1/1

On the first Wednesday of each month, the galleries of the Backstreet Art District in South Palm Springs open their doors for an evening of art, community, refreshments and fun.  https://backstreetartdistrict.com/

 

Palm Springs International Film Festival

Palm Springs International Film Festival     1/2 – 1/13

The Palm Springs International Film Festival is one of the largest film festivals in North America, held annually during the first week of January. The event kicks off with the Film Awards Gala at the Palm Springs Convention Center, featuring the presentation of awards to top stars in the previous year’s best films. Throughout the week, hundreds of film screenings are held throughout the city, including domestic and foreign films, along with educational talks and panels. https://www.psfilmfest.org/

 

Palm Springs Vintage Market

Palm Springs Vintage Market     1/5

The monthly Palm Springs Vintage Market is held at the Palm Springs Cultural Center on the first Sunday of the month from October through May, featuring vintage furniture, art, decorative items, clothing, jewelry and more from local and national vendors, as well as delicious food and live entertainment. http://www.palmspringsvintagemarket.com

 

Elvis Honeymoon Hideaway house

Elvis Birthday Celebration     1/11

The Elvis Honeymoon Hideaway House, where Elvis and Priscilla Presley spent their honeymoon in 1967, is hosting a special Elvis birthday celebration show, featuring acclaimed impersonator George Thomas. The event begins with a tour of the property, followed by a live performance. https://elvisinpalmsprings.com/tours/

 

Red Carpet Run

PSIFF Red Carpet Run     1/11

The Palm Springs International Film Festival Red Carpet Run includes both a 5K and 10K run/walk, beginning and ending on the red carpet and following a route that includes former Palm Springs homes of iconic Hollywood stars. Participants don gowns, tuxes and other festive attire during this fun and crazy race, and finishers are presented with their own Oscar trophies. https://organizations.hakuapp.com/organizations/3221744e287a6441c1dd/events/562099c3caa8cadca357

 

Palm Springs Aerial Tramway

Let’s Talk Speakers Series – The Palm Springs Aerial Tramway Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow    1/23

Learn about one of the desert’s most treasured landmarks, the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway, during this informative and entertaining talk at the Palm Springs Cultural Center. Greg Purdy, the tram’s VP of Marketing and Public Affairs, and Cara Youngman, Public Relations Manager, will explore the visionaries who conceived of the tram, the people behind its design and construction, its importance to Palm Springs today, and plans for the future.

https://pshistoricalsociety.org/products/lets-talk-the-palm-springs-aerial-tramway-yesterday-today-and-tomorrow

It’s event season here in Palm Springs and the weather is beautiful. Our quaint town is buzzing with activity and fun events. Check out these must-attend upcoming LGBTQ events in Palm Springs.

February 8, 2020

The 26th Annual Steve Chase Humanitarian Awards

For 26 years, The Steve Chase Humanitarian Awards has been honoring Humanitarians from all corners of the globe. They are people who radiate compassion – who seem to have been born for a higher purpose. The 26th Annual Steve Chase Humanitarian Awards will honor Hank Plante, Garry Kief, and Ambassador Deborah L. Birx M.D and feature entertainment from Kristin Chenoweth. The Steve Chase Humanitarian Awards is attended by more than 2,000 of the Coachella Valley’s most fashionable humanitarians making red carpet arrivals and the after-party events unto themselves. This year marks the 26th year for Desert AIDS Project’s largest fundraising event which is named for one of DAP’s earliest financial supporters, the designer Steve Chase.  Find out more here.

February 20-24, 2020

International Bear Convergence

The International Bear Convergence is the premier winter LGBT for bears and the admirers. This is a five-day event where the community can get together and enjoy activities that range from pool parties to live DJ performances. Find out more here.

March 21, 2020

Red Dress Dress Red

The Center’s Red Dress Dress Red on March 21 from 8 to 11pm at the Palm Springs Air Museum is not only the hottest dance party of the Palm Springs Season, it is THE party of the Season! Whether it’s a frock, fishnets, or a fantasy come to life, Red Dress Dress Red is an opportunity for you to harness your creative expression and to share that gift in a community of 1,500 other visionaries-to-be. Once you’ve arrived, your body will be sure to pulse to the beats by DJ Galaxy that will fill the Palm Springs’ night sky. With all that energy in the air, and Mt. San Jacinto as our backdrop, we’ll treat you to an open bar and tasty bites from area restaurants to round out this night of delight. Find out more here.

April 1-6, 2020

Club Skirts presents The Dinah

More than 15,000 women from all over the world will gather in Palm Springs for The Dinah, also known as The Dinah Shore Weekend by Club Skirts. This LGBT event has been in Palm Springs for 30 years and is the largest, most famous all girl event and music festival in the world. Enjoy comedy, pool parties, galas, theme parties and more, come and celebrate, unite, empower and live out loud. Find out more here.

 

If you love the creative style of independent filmmakers, then staying at a small independently-owned hotel will fit right in with your ethos.  Every hotel is beautifully curated for an extraordinary experience. And if you’re heading to the 30th Palm Springs International Film Festival in January, at least two of our member small hotels are offering festival rates including Alcazar Palm Springs and Los Arboles Hotel.

Alcazar Palm Springs offers a great location that is close to both downtown and the arts district. Two fabulous restaurants, Cheeky’s and Birba are right on site.  Alcazar’s contemporary style has a distinctly hip European vibe.  It boasts imported Italian linens, flat screen TV’s, fireplaces, poolside and private patios, salt water purified pool, cooling misters, Jacuzzi and a beautiful garden courtyard in which to lounge. Festival Rate Code: PSFF

The Courtyard at Alcazar Palm Springs
The Courtyard at Alcazar Palm Springs

Charming and historic, href=”https://www.palmspringspreferredsmallhotels.com/stay/los-arboles-hotel”>Los Arboles Hotel is home to the iconic, El Mirasol Mexican Restaurant and bar.  Family owned and operated, it features 21 well-appointed rooms, a heated pool, Jacuzzi, room service and is located walking distance from shopping, dining, and nightlife.  This is one of those places where delighted guests return year after year. Festival Rate Code: PSFF19 for 10% off.

The patio at Los Arboles Restaurant and Bar, Palm Springs

The patio at Los Arboles Restaurant and Bar, Palm Springs

Palm Springs Tram Christmas Tree

By Katy Carrier

Palm Springs’ busy season is underway, with great events happening during the month of December!

Palm Springs Tramway Tree Lighting  12/1

Take a trip up the Palm Springs Tram to enjoy their annual Tree Lighting Ceremony (https://pstramway.com/special-events/), featuring award-winning journalist Hank Plante as this year’s tree-lighter. The festivities will include a holiday performance by the Palm Springs High School Madrigals & String Quartet, along with a special appearance by Santa Claus.

Palm Springs Tram Christmas Tree

Palm Springs Vintage Market  12/1

The monthly Palm Springs Vintage Market (http://www.palmspringsvintagemarket.com), held at the Palm Springs Cultural Center on the first Sunday of the month from October through May, features vintage furniture, decor, art, clothing, jewelry and more from local and national vendors, as well as delicious food and live entertainment.

Palm Springs Vintage Market

Palm Springs Holiday Tree Lighting  12/6

Kick the holiday season off with the official Palm Springs Holiday Tree Lighting (https://www.facebook.com/events/2384549831758190/) in Frances Stevens Park. Mary Hart will serve as the Celebrity Tree Lighter, and attendees can enjoy free cookies and hot cocoa, caroling, holiday crafts, storytime with Santa Claus and more.

Palm Springs Christmas Tree Lighting

Palm Springs Festival of Lights Parade  12/7

The popular Palm Springs holiday tradition that is the Palm Springs Festival of Lights (http://psfestivaloflights.com/) returns for its 27th year this December, featuring a festive parade along Palm Canyon Drive in downtown Palm Springs. Mary Hart will serve as this year’s Celebrity Grand Marshal, along with LQBTQ Grand Marshal Mikalah Gordon and Community Grand Marshal Olivia Garvey.

Palm Springs Festival of Light Parade

Elvis’ Blue Suede Christmas at The Purple Room  12/7

Acclaimed Elvis impersonator Scot Bruce is coming to The Purple Room this December to present Elvis’ Blue Suede Christmas (https://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/4307451). You can also enjoy dinner before the show!

Elvis Blue Suede Christmas tribute show

Holiday Shopping Bazaar at Villa Royale  12/19

Villa Royale (https://villaroyale.com/) hotel in south Palm Springs will host a holiday shopping bazaar from 5:30pm to 8:30pm, featuring wares from local shops and makers that will make the perfect unique holiday gifts for family and friends!Villa Royale Hotel exterior

If you’re heading to Palm Springs for Pride Week, forget the big hotels and experience what community is all about. Palm Springs has dozens of charming, independently-owned boutique hotels that are just as unique as you.

And that’s important because Palm Spring Pride is like no other.  Here, community is defined very broadly and allies are enthusiastically celebrated.

Proof in point: this year’s Pride Week theme, inspired by (and in support of) “youth-led movement-building efforts that are awakening critical conversations for social change,” is Youth Power for Change. In a profoundly symbolic gesture, the youth of Coachella Valley were collectively named Grand Marshalls of the 2018 Pride Parade. 

The Palm Springs is unusual because it does not contain gay ghettos like most cities.  Decades ago, when Palm Springs was drifting into oblivion like so many small desert towns, it was the gay community who infused it with new life, starting hotels and other businesses that set the course for the Palm Springs of today.

And to this day, many Palm Springs Preferred Small Hotels are owned or managed by members and allies of the LGBTQ community.  

Where to Stay

Case in point: For women who remember the Bee Charmer Inn, it is now called La Maison and under the gay-friendly new ownership of allies Cornelia and Robert.  Voted one of the most romantic inns in the country by Trip Advisor over the past few years, La Maison provides a safe and welcoming haven for solo travelers and couples. Exceptionally serene and lush, La Maison prides itself on small touches of perfection that make guests feel cherished.

The woman-owned, Alcazar Palm Springs, is managed by the talented Robert Hunt. This stunningly beautiful contemporary hotel is conveniently located near some of the best restaurants and shopping in town. Known for its diversity and inclusiveness, The Alcazar enjoys bragging rights for its salt water purified pool and garden courtyard with fire and water walls. It’s even pet friendly.

If clothing-optional man space is your thing, there is no better place to celebrate Pride than at one of the men’s resorts on San Lorenzo Road. In one short block, you’ll find at least four of the best (and most beautiful) resorts owned and operated by and for men, including: The Triangle Inn Palm SpringsSantiago ResortTortuga del Sol, and Escape Resort.