You guys, a new cat distribution portal has opened in Palm Springs! Located in the Rimrock Shopping Mall at the base of the Araby Trail/Goat Trails, Frisky Business Cat Cafe appeared in January and unlike other portals it has people amenities: delicious coffee, teas, water, and snacks from Aspen Mills Bakery and Chef Tanya’s Kitchen. Most importantly, for $22 you get a beverage of your choice and 45 minutes of cuddles and playtime with 12 adorable, adoptable kitties. Don’t have time for cuddles (you heartless bastard)? A coffee and a nosh after your hike keeps the portal open.
They don’t go out and grab kitties off the street and throw them into a room with you and watch the “fun,” no. That’s called a night at my cousin’s house in Georgia. These cats are from the Palm Springs Animal Shelter (PSAS) and have all been vetted for health conditions, are fixed/neutered, and pre-socialized. Every person that enters the kitties’ comfy and well-decorated living room helps socialize them just a little bit more with scratches and play times. The wall has photos and the history of each kitty, and it’s a bit of a game matching them up.
If you’ve got a cat, these babies will make you a little less lonely for the feline you had to leave at home. AND you have a beautiful and up close view of the mountain that never gets old.
Allergic? You can still grab a coffee without fear of a sneezing fit as the kitties have their own rooms — one for socializing and snoozing in the afternoon sun, and the other windowless. You know, for modesty reasons. The cafe itself is cat and dander free.
And now for story time. I booked a 45-minute visit on a Sunday. It was actually quite busy, both in the cafe and in the kitty room. I went with a couple of friends, and we got our beverages (I had a cold brew with oat milk and it was delish!) and then we went in the cat room where a family of four was enjoying some kitty time. The cats were curious about the newcomers, and there were some leg rubs and somersaults. We all settled into a lounge area and watched the cats interact and bathe in the afternoon sun as it dipped down behind the mountain. And then an extraordinary thing happened. Three bonded kitties that they’d had little hope of rehoming together got adopted! A couple whose two cats died a few months back adopted all three! The 10-year old kitties’ good fortune brought tears to everyone’s eyes. I wiped away one just now at the retelling. I’m such a mush.
On the other side of town and spectrum is Boozehounds, the dog-friendly spot that recently earned a spot in the Michelin Guide.
Although you and your pooch are relegated to the well-decorated atrium and patio, they are separate, and huge areas. The entire restaurant is 7,000 square feet, so there’s plenty of room for everyone.
There are many Palm Springs restaurants that permit dogs, but it’s generally sidewalk dining. While there’s nothing wrong with that, Boozehounds is completely contained, keeping out the distraction and sounds of traffic so for an hour or more you can kiss the rest of the world goodbye. It doesn’t have the spectacular view of Frisky Business, but it does have a very upscale, creative menu, and food options for your dog.
Here was our lineup: an order of fries for the table (plenty for four and oh so good, ask for more ketchup); two orders of garlic noodles (delicious, but our stomachs were chatting — and by chatting I mean close to getting into an argument — at the play we saw after); one fried fish and truffle fries (delicious, he said); and two slightly green-tinged thumbs up on the avocado toast. Although you can’t tell from our orders, they have a robust brunch menu and their dinner options are mostly Asian inspired.
This won’t matter in a minute, but the patio does not have outdoor heaters, so it was a bit chilly after sundown.
And that’s the animal round up for Palm Springs. As a reminder, many of our small hotels and resorts allow you to bring your pooch; I’ve pre-sorted them for you here.
P.S.: It’s almost kitten season. Frisky Business might just be working on something with PSAS so keep an eye out. Kittens need to be socialized, so you can help while participating in their kitten antics! Squeee!!! A must for people who enjoy the Kitten Bowl (over here!).
P.S.S.: If you’re into horses, try Smoke Tree Stables. I don’t think they have a Pony Bowl, but what do I know. I’m a cat lady.