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Well, we made it. We got a good scrub down from Tropical Storm Hilary, and some scattered palm tree exfoliation in yards and streets that will be gone by the time you read this.

September is just the warm up — maybe it’s the cool down — to season, so bargains are still in the offing. Consider booking a getaway and take advantage of those pre-season rates. The weather is being a real mensch.

Here’s what’s going on to help you decide when you’re coming, but first, some reminders: Modernism Week October is in … you guessed it, October; Halloween in Palm Springs, specifically on Arenas, needs to be experienced; and Pride is in November. This just in: Adele Dazeem will be headlining! (That’s a John Travolta Oscar joke, folks … for those of you who don’t do the Oscars, in 2014 that’s how Travolta intro’d Idina Menzel singing “Let It Go.“) 

Let’s go!

Looking for something to do over Labor Day weekend? Check out DJ ModGirl pumping out the party at various venues over the weekend and dance the day and night away.

The Dinah is the largest lesbian/queer/non-binary party in the world, and it’s happening Sept. 20-24. I’ve got all the places to stay neatly offered here. DJs and dancers not yet announced, but they ask that you follow their Instagram for all the deets.

Hundreds of women in the audience at a concert at The Dinah in Palm Springs

The crowd at The Dinah. Photo courtesy of Visit Palm Springs

Acrisure events in September include Cirque du Soleil Corteo and monster trucks.

Reforma has a lot of fun events on top of dining and dancing. Saturdays they have (IMHO) the most creative drag shows around. Beyoncé, Barbie, Taylor Swift, and Britney Spears have all had their drag moments here.

Pretty Faces Nightclub is described by owner Michael as a Pee Wee’s Playhouse kind of club, due to the decor of fairies and mushrooms. Dancing and events.

Cinema Diverse at Palm Springs Cultural Center is in its 16th year. You can read all about the LGBT+ film festival here. That first link gets you tickets. As of this post, the films have not yet been announced.

Mondays are for PS ukulele club @ Hits. It’s a local get together, but I happen to know some out-of-town enthusiasts. Plus, it’s a weed shop, so …

Chill Bar — Not Your Grandma’s Bingo on Saturdays, Varsity Fridays.

Mondays: King’s Highway & Amigo Room give us a double feature with Bella da Ball’s Drag Bingo, followed by her Trivia Night in the Amigo. $30

Sept. 17: Into old Hollywood and new plays? Confessions of a Starmaker is happening at 2 p.m. on the Palm Springs Art Museum’s Annenberg stage. Tickets are $100 with a cocktail reception to follow.

PS Underground is back and coming in hot with Light. Check out all their shows, including returning favorites like Dirty Bingo.

The Purple Room has reopened after its summer hiatus with Debby Boone and The Judy Show. There’s free entertainment on weeknights from local favorites Rose Mallett, Sharon Sills, Michael Holmes, Charles Herrera and Darcy Daniels. 6:30 to 9 p.m. Check the website for future ticketed shows.

PS Air Bar — Even if they didn’t have great entertainment, and they do, it’s worth going just for the ambiance. And their California Caesar is unlike any other you’ve had. Delish!

Old airplane seats inside the PS Air bar in Palm Springs, California

Welcome to PS Air. Photo courtesy of Visit Palm Springs

V Wine Lounge is a great place to have a glass of wine, beer, or craft cocktail. I had the  specialty blueberry mocktail invented by the lounge’s owner, James, and it was so good! Also, we learned it’s become a lesbian hangout on Mondays and Tuesdays when Leanna and Keisha D take the stage (respectively). It was a learning bonanza for this blogger, because karaoke nights are big with the lesbian crowd, and those ladies can sing! Minimal cover of $10. Check schedule for mo’info mo’events (In Living Color, anyone?).

One of our desert’s most talented and philanthropically inclined songbirds, Keisha D, has four residencies right now. We’ve got V Wine on Tuesdays with her full band of phenomenal players, PS Air Bar on Wednesdays, The Roost (with band) on Thursdays, and Sundays are an intimate evening at Palm Springs Cultural Center (her band will be back with her come October). I cannot encourage you enough — GO! And if you see that she’s doing her Tina Turner show? Grab that ticket ASAP. You don’t want to miss it.

If I don’t see you on the street, I’ll see you in October!

October was fabulous, but it was just the opening act to what we call “season” in Palm Springs. Not “the season,” just “season.” Batman knows.

November days are sunny but not too hot, and the nights are cool, but not cold. Not only is it great hiking weather, it is also excellent pool weather — the sun is warm and the air is cool, kinda like Hawaii without getting spit on by rain. Our streets are bustling day and night, and you’d be wise to make a reservation before going out to dinner at one of our many restaurants. It’s the weather that puts what we call “season” here in Palm Springs into full swing.

We’ve got BIG events, theater, music, tucked away places to try, and some brand new exciting night clubs and restaurants. I don’t want to keep you all day, so let’s go!

Events

Nov. 4-6: Pride — This link takes you to Gay Desert Guide’s links to Pride events. If you enjoy being confused and confounded, you can go here.

Nov. 6: Pride Parade

Nov. 11-13: Women’s Jazz Festival at the Palm Springs Convention Center

Nov. 18-21: JOGS Palm Springs Gem & Jewelry Show — The JOGS Gem & Jewelry Show is one of the largest jewelry trade shows in the Americas, bringing together a variety of manufacturers, wholesalers, and brands. IYKYK.

Nov. 19: Props and Hops Craft Beer Festival — At the Palm Springs Air Museum, from 1 to 6 p.m. Get buzzed on land and buzz around in the sky in a warbird. Tons of food and entertainment.

Pride brings everyone out to Palm Springs. Photo courtesy of Visit Palm Springs

Ongoing music and libations

Melvyn’s — At the Ingleside Inn … so old school Palm Springs you’ll squee. Celebrities often sit in at the piano bar. There’s GREAT music from Mikael Healy all through the week, and the Sunday Jam is not to be missed, with all of the best musicians P.S. has to offer.

Palm Springs Cultural Center — It’s not just movies! Upstairs (I think they’re calling it Come On Up?) during the week expect an eclectic mix of styles from local musicians.

V Wine Lounge 

The Purple Room — Open every day except Monday (and who knows, maybe they’ll open on Mondays again during season).

PS Underground — It’s pricey, but definitely a one-of-a-kind experience and totally worth every simoleon.

Oscar’s — Some great shows coming up, and if I can urge you to go see at least one thing there, please let it be Mid-Century Moderns.

Theater

Dezart Performs (Choir Boy is an official Pride event)

Desert Ensemble Theatre (at PSCC, good yet unusual theater)

Palm Canyon Theatre

Hooch-y hideaways  

Small and intimate spots to get away from the crowds.

The Tailor Shop

Seymours

La Boisson (at Fleur Noire Hotel)

Le Fern, 411 E. Palm Canyon Dr. (4-9pm 7 days a week)

The Front Porch

Del Rey (at Villa Royale)

PS Air

Welcome to La Boisson. Photo courtesy of Fleur Noire Hotel

Outdoor activities

Modern and More Bike Tours — You need your own bike, but if you’re staying in a boutique hotel, chances are they’ve got one for you. This is not for kids, it’s all about history and architecture and is operated by Brennan, one of our Modernism Bus Tour guides. All quiet streets, no hills, constant sunshine, and very little traffic. Even novices will enjoy this educational ride — however, people with back problems may not. Know thyself before you book.

Historic Walking Tours from the Palm Springs Historical Society — Good luck trying to figure out which one to book. I want to go on ALL of them.

MOGO Silent Disco — Dance like nobody’s watching down the streets of Palm Springs. Everyone gets their own headset and is jamming to the same tune on this dancing tour. Outrageous outfits are encouraged, and a little stamina (60 minutes of boogie is a workout!) required.

NEW!

Sancho’s — 411 E. Palm Canyon, Palm Springs.

Coming soon

Reforma Night Club (Nov. 4)

Clandestino

Churrasco Brazilian Steakhouse (December 2022)

Thanksgiving

Alert! Apparently there’s a turkey shortage, which I find weird. Have you ever been to Wisconsin? They’re all over the road. OpenTable put together a great list of every restaurant in the Coachella Valley serving up the remaining turkeys. Most of the Palm Springs options are on page 2, and include Melvyn’s at Ingleside Inn, Azucar at La Serena Villas, and Del Rey at Villa Royale.

See you next month!

The elegant dining room at Melvyn’s. Photo courtesy of Visit Palm Springs

Did you know that Palm Springs is internationally famous? Well, it is. Since 2006, people from all over the planet have been coming to Palm Springs during the month of February for the banging party we call Modernism Week. It’s like the United Nations all up in here.  

Before the big event, Modernism Week holds a four-day preview in October called Modernism Fall Preview (a.k.a. Mini-Mod Week), running from October 14 through 17. It’s jam-packed with loads to do — over 50 events!  

Modernism Week and Mini-Mod Week are so popular the best events sell out the same day they go on sale. So unless some fabulous bit of wizardry transpires (it might, Palm Springs is magical), forget about Sunnylands and Frank Sinatra’s Twin Palms Estate Tour. There’s plenty left to see though, from significant mid-century modern home tours to architectural double decker bus tours. 

You can dress as you like, but a lot of people choose to pull out their pedal pushers and fedoras — whatever it takes to achieve that retro look. During Mini-Mod Week, the town takes on that old-timey feel of the ’50s and ’60s.

There are some cool cocktail-style events, but those sell out pretty fast. One of my very favorite supper clubs, PS Underground, has a brand new show for this year called Beatnik. Hurry and book, their shows are always outstanding. 

Even if you miss out on your favorite events, there’s still the main event at the Palm Springs Convention Center where you can browse everything mid-century modern, including art, furniture, and lighting. You can find a list of exhibitors here. 

If you’re the curious type like me, or a little iffy on modernism, this article breaks down mid-century modern art for you. The same with architecture here. 

Friday night is the big opening night party for the Modernism Show and Sale. Tickets are $75 in advance and $85 at the door. A purchase to the opening night party gives you access to the show on Saturday and Sunday. 

Skipping the party? (You’re gonna say “no” to a party?!) You can still buy a ticket for Saturday and Sunday that will cost you one Jackson (soon to be Tubman!) and gets you in both days so you can shop ‘til you bop later on that evening. 

Whether you do or don’t plan on going to the Modernism Week preview, but love the vibe of the mid-mod experience, we have mid-century modern hotels for the complete experience. There are 25 of them, all with great amenities — learn more about these fabulous spots here. 


The Purple Room, a Rat Pack-inspired supper club, has some of the finest entertainment in town. Here are the weekend shows during Modernism Preview:  

October 14: Sharon Sills (every Thursday) 

October 15: Branden and James — vocals and cello performing the Lady Gaga songbook 

October 16: Branden and James  — vocals and cello performing the Lady Gaga songbook 

October 17: The Judy Show (my favorite show in town! Every Sunday.) 

Also, check out V Wine Lounge, where the vibe is so retro you’ll squee. 

By the way, the bus tours are hella fun. I am a tour guide assistant and even from my view (I sit in the bottom of the bus, you’ll be on top — bring sunscreen and hold onto your hats!) it’s a fun and informative 2-and-a-half hour ride. 

Hope to see you there, and let’s go retro! 

“Ba-dee-ya, dee-ya, dee-ya

Ba-dee-ya, dee-ya, dee-ya

Ba-dee-ya, dee-ya, dee-ya, dee-ya!

Ba-dee-ya, dee-ya, dee-ya

Ba-dee-ya, dee-ya, dee-ya

Ba-dee-ya, dee-ya, dee-ya, dee-ya!” — “September,” Earth, Wind & Fire

It’s not quite the end of summer yet, but almost every venue in Palm Springs is back and in the swing of things, a.k.a. there is plenty to do. So as someone once said, “Ain’t nothin’ to it, but to get down to it.”

Sweepstakes!

Locale and Palm Springs Preferred Small Hotels (that’s us!) are partnering for the Ultimate Palm Springs Boutique Hotel Giveaway. Five different packages at five very cool and very different boutique hotels: A Place In The Sun, Azure Sky, Alcazar, Los Arboles, and Old Ranch Inn. Enter here by Sept. 19, 2022.

The pool area of Azure Sky. Photo courtesy of Azure Sky

New spots

The Flannery Exchange at 750 N. Palm Canyon Drive is a mixed-use property that includes offices, retail and food. Two new hot spots have opened here in an already very cool space:

Bar Chingona — Hours: Thursday to Sunday, 6-10 p.m. It’s in an Airstream trailer! You must try the cocktail made with fresh pureed watermelon, tequila, basil, and serrano with lemon juice. I love this quote, so here it is: “The concept is a Palm Springs take on Mexico City’s craft cocktail culture, born from Flannery Exchange owner Mike Flannery’s oddly specific longtime dream of having a bar in an Airstream trailer.”

Hoja Blanca — Hours: Thursday to Sunday, 6-10 p.m. A sort of pop-up, according to the website, serving reimagined Mexican food by locally-raised brothers Omar and Arnold Limon. Man, that makes them sound like produce or livestock. My apologies — they’re not farm-raised, but were cage-free.

Luchows — Hours: Thursday to Sunday, but call. Luchows was open for a hot Palm Springs second this spring, then it perma-closed — until an angel swooped in and brought it back from the dead. It’s like Lazarus! I hear it’s great, and that is splendid because we do not have many good choices for traditional Chinese food. One of the things I have missed about Chicago since I left 27 years ago. 4771 E. Palm Canyon Drive, in the Vons shopping plaza (they have a great gas station there too, a buck off if you pay cash).

PRO VR — Brand new virtual reality gaming. This is on Crossley Road, bordering Cathedral City, about 10 minutes from downtown Palm Springs. If you like escape games, this is that, but with heightened reality. Am I going? Does the sun shine 360 days a year in Palm Springs? (It does, so that’s a yes.)

Live shows

Oscar’s — LGBTQ or LGBTQ-adjacent shows.

Purple Room — Great acts, home of The Judy Show.

PS Underground — One of the most creative shows you’ll ever see, and the food matches that description too.

PS Cultural Center — Live music weekdays upstairs, blockbusters, indie films, and film festivals. They’ve even got a restaurant! This month is Cinema Diverse: The Palm Springs LGBTQ Film Festival — make sure to check it out.

Jazzville — All the best jazz from all over the world, every Thursday night.

V Wine Lounge — A mixed bag of entertainment including karaoke, and some of the best wine selections in town.

Cascade Lounge — Themed nights of comedy, Latin, and more.

The Alibi — Their line up is baffling but looks oh so fun.

Cheers to good times in Palm Springs. Photo courtesy of Visit Palm Springs

LGBTQ

The Dinah — You can explore the website yourself, but I’m also going to tell you about the biggest lesbian party under the sun in an upcoming post.

Cinema Diverse — September 15-25. Now in its 15th year, this festival of international films from and about the LGBTQ+ community is held at the PS Cultural Center. See one or see them all.

Booze N’ Brush Next to Naked Sip N’ Paint — September 3. This is an exotic male model painting event. 400 Ramon Road.

Chill Bar — Varsity Fridays at 4 p.m. 217 E. Arenas Road.

The Swimming Hole — Sundays from Noon to 6 p.m. at Hotel Zoso, 150 S. Indian Canyon Dr. This is an LGBTQ pool party presented by Hunters Nightclubs and Tyler Caiden. Ages 18+.

Hunters: 

Sundays: Risqué Drag Review, hosted by Miss Rusty Waters, 9:30 p.m.

Mondays: Gaming Mondays, with prizes for winners.

Tuesdays: Trivia Night at 5:30 p.m. and Karaoke Night from 8 p.m. to midnight.

Wednesdays: Drag Me to Bingo with Miss Rusty Waters, 6 to 8 p.m., followed by the Spotlight Drag Show at 8:30 p.m.

Thursdays: Throwback Thursdays with music from the ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s. Drink specials start at 3 p.m.

Fridays: Fur Fridays, with $2 Bud Light draft and well cocktails, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Saturdays: Switch Saturdays Drag Show with a new host and new cast every week, 2 p.m. Terrific food to pair with your beverage.

Eagle 501 — Gear Thursdays, Bear Fridays, and Church Lady Sundays.

Karaoke

Retro Room — Karaoke every night!

Streetbar — One of the friendliest gay bars around. That’s their tagline — LMK if it’s true.

Fireside Lounge — Well off the beaten path, this local and exceptional dive bar is open 23 hours a day. The link is for address only, that page is a mess.

Ongoing events

PS Art Museum — Free Thursday evenings, followed by Village Fest.

Warbird Rides at the Palm Springs Air Museum. I’m not a war girl, but this terrific museum is fascinating.

Speaking of flying, PS Air is something you should check out. They call themselves a speakeasy, but the whole joint looks like an airplane. Very cool. It’s inside a great wine shop with delicious salads and other fine foods called Bouschet.

Palm Springs Museum interior

The Palm Springs Museum of Art. Photo courtesy of Visit Palm Springs

October brings the downscaled Modernism Week, so check out their events and reserve now. It’s a very hot ticket.

Please remember to shop, stay, and eat local. It keeps Palm Springs, one of the best adult playgrounds west of the Mississippi, thriving. And if you found this useful, tag us in your Instagram posts when you visit, and tell us what you did!

Holy Ned, October is jamming! We’ve got Modernism Week Preview plus Palm Springs Leather Pride. If neither of those float your boat, there’s HALLOWEEN! It’s a huge holiday here in Palm Springs, and Halloween on Arenas is sick (in the best way possible). Costumes are off the charts creative, and the whole town is one big party.  

And now that it’s cooling down, all of our venues are heating way up. Keep in mind many indoor events require a vaccination card and a mask. Hey, the world is a bit of a horror show these days, but Palm Springs knows how to be safe and party. 

So now, without further ado, say hello to October events:  

Jazzville Shows at Agua Caliente Casino Cascade Lounge  

MFUO Featuring Jacques Lesure — Thursday, October 7, 7 p.m. 

Rumproller Organ Trio at Jazzville Palm Springs — Thursday, October 14, 7 p.m. 

Dan Delgado Sextet — Thursday, October 21, 7 p.m. 

Agua Caliente Casino Caliente Comedy 

Craig Conant  — Friday, October 1, 8 p.m. 

Pablo Francisco Comedy — Friday, October 8, 8 p.m. 

Brian Scolaro — Friday, October 15, 8 p.m. 

Tom Arnold — Friday, October 29, 8 p.m. 

Lalo Guerrero Tribute Show — Thursday, October 28, 7 p.m. 

Cultural Center – Camelot Theatres 

Drag O Rama featuring Rosemary Galore
Sunday, October 3, 2:30 p.m. (repeating Sundays)
Tickets starting at $15

 

Presenting Drag O Rama

 

REPO! The Genetic Opera — special screening of the cult horror film
Thursday, October 7, 6 p.m. social hour, event at 7 p.m. 

Chip ‘N’ Dru: Our Favorite Sings
Saturday, October 9, 6 p.m.

Multi-talented singer Dru Rutledge and veteran Broadway pianist Chip Prince present Our Favorite Sings. Featuring a multi-genre selection of songs in the style of Rodgers and Hammerstein, Debussy, Puccini, Stephen Sondheim, Leonard Bernstein, Broadway, Opera, Top 40 chart toppers, and more!  

Martinis and Moxie: A Society Social
Friday, October 15, 6 p.m.

A “My Way” society revue celebrating the life and music of Frank Sinatra.  

2021 Arthur Lyons Film Noir Festival
Thursday, October 21, 7:30 p.m.

Founded in 2000 by the late mystery author and Palm Springs community leader Arthur Lyons, the popular Film Noir Festival includes an eclectic mixture of prestigious and obscure black and white B movies from the classic film noir period. The festival is known for unearthing and screening rare films, restored classics, and for the special appearances of the stars who were in them.  

The Purple Room 

Tuesdays: Rose Mallett 

Wednesdays: Michael Holmes and Darci Daniels 

Thursdays: Sharon Sills 

Fridays and Saturdays: Ticketed events 

Sundays: The Judy Show   

PS Underground 

That’s Amore, an Italian feast set to music.
Saturday, October 2, 7 p.m. 

Gospel Brunch featuring great music and Keisha D.
Sunday, October 3, 11 a.m. 

Ovation! A Jazzed Up Sunday Brunch
Sunday, October 10, 11 a.m. 

Death by Cheese, a ghoulishly cheesy Sunday brunch.
Sunday, October 24, 11 a.m.  

420 Bank Dispensary and Lounge 

Cheech Meet & Greet
Friday, October 1, 3 p.m. 

Kottonmouth Kings with DLOC
Saturday, October 23, 9 p.m. 

Rabbit Country
Friday, October 15, 6 p.m. 

Open Mic Night
Thursdays — October 7, 14, 21 

Oscar’s House Parties 

Saturdays: Mimosa Men (Brunch) 

Sundays: Bitchiest Brunch 

Sundays: World Famous T-Dance  

Oscar’s Special Events 

Edie Las Vegas Showgirls: Unleashed (ticketed event) — Saturday, October 2, 7 to 9 p.m. 

Sandra Bernhardt — Monday, October 4 and Tuesday, October 5

Remembering The Golden Girls — Wednesday, October 6

An Evening With Cameron Ross — Thursday, October 14

Melissa Manchester outdoor concert — Thursday, October 21 and Friday, October 22

Theater 

Desert Rose Playhouse Presents Xanadu 

Thursday to Sunday, through October 17 

(Note: So far their season has been spectacular!)  

Palm Canyon Theater 

Sordid Lives — Through October 3 

Shrek The Musical — Beginning October 22 

More options 

Wind and Wine Paint Party
Saturday, October 16, 11 a.m.
Palm Springs Windmill Tours
Wine glass painting class and Windmill Tour  

Paint Splatter at Superbloom Studios
Thursday, October 14, 6 p.m.
Starts at $150.00  

The Gem Show at Palm Springs Convention Center
October 21 through 24   

Modernism Fall Preview
October 14 through 17
 

Halloween 

Palm Springs Cultural Center 

Jazzville Creepy Cocktail Party
Sunday, October 31, 3 p.m. 

Cinema Bizarro: Best of Retro Cartoon Halloween Specials
Sunday, October 31, 1 p.m.  

Jazzville Presents The Jazz Cartel Halloween Special
Sunday, October 31, 5 p.m. 

Hocus Pocus hosted by the Sanderson Sisters
Sunday, October 31, 5 p.m.

A screening of Hocus Pocus with special guests the Sanderson Sisters. Kids receive a (kinda) real magic wand from the spooky woods of Salem.  

Zombie Burlesque Cocktail Party
Sunday, October 31, 6 p.m.  

The Three Michaels playing the Halloween score live, plus private party
Sunday, October 31, 8 p.m. 

An ode to John Carpenter’s Halloween with the musical score, scares, and skits performed live in front of an abbreviated version of the film projected on the big screen. 

Dirty Little Secrets Presents Shock Theater Spooktacular
Sunday, October 31 8 p.m.

California’s longest running burlesque and variety show. From zombies to fire performers, this eclectic shock theater of sensational striptease will keep you laughing and howling all night! 

PS Underground 

BITE – a bloody vampire dinner
October 26, 27, 28, 31, 7 p.m. 

Halloween on Arenas Road – The Queen Of All Halloween Parties
The party starts at 4 p.m. and goes until 11 p.m.. Take an Uber/Lyft, parking will suck, and you’ll likely get pretty boozy. There’s too much to talk about, so I’m just sending you to the link. Prizes up to $1,800! 

For Gay Men Only

The Dirty Show with Skyler Gentry
Wednesday, October 6, 7 p.m.

$25 includes complimentary booze, snacks, pre-show and post-show party after every performance. The venue is outdoors with spaced seating. 

Hot Uncle at the Barracks
Saturday, October 16, 9 p.m.  
 

Palm Springs Leather Pride 2021: Unlocked: Full Release
Begins October 26 and runs through October 31. Multiple venues, starting at Eagle 501 bar.  SO MANY EVENTS! Event packages (too easy) here. Need some leather? Try Gear and Rough Trade Gear. 

That’ll do it for October. Don’t forget to shop and stay local. See you in November!  

“I got my hands up, they’re playin’ my song, they know I’m gonna be okay. Yeah, it’s a party in the U.S.A.”Miley Cyrus 

Commemorating the passage of the Declaration of Independence by the Continental Congress on July 4, 1776, Independence Day was declared a federal holiday in 1870.

In 1941, thanks to 32 — shorthand for the shorthand FDR, a.k.a. POTUS Franklin Delano Roosevelt (I could talk in acronyms all day, I once worked in IT) — it became a paid federal holiday.

FDR was not an author of the Declaration — he was born over a century later — but he did an awful lot for America: he brought us out of the Great Depression, saw us through World War II, established the New Deal (which included Social Security), and much, much more.

President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Photo courtesy of Library of Congress/Unsplash

He was so popular he was elected president four consecutive times. In 1932 he won the popular vote and received 472 electoral votes, carrying 42 states. In ’36 he won 60 percent of the popular vote, with only Maine and Vermont electorates backing his opponent. The 1940 and 1944 elections held more of the same, but to a slightly lesser degree. It’s hard to imagine an America so in tune with each other. I mean, four terms equals 12 years (I did the math for you, you’re welcome), and the majority of Americans agreed that FDR was the right man for the times. Under his guidance, America prospered. Had he not come into power, as they say, the outlook for America was very bleak.

FDR never visited Palm Springs, but his son Elliot built a gorgeous mid-century home in Indian Wells before he moved to Arizona. You can peek it here. (Side note: Elliot was a writer. He wrote mystery novels based at the White House, all solved by none other than his intrepid mother, the great Eleanor Roosevelt.)

If you’re celebrating the Fourth this year, here are the fun and fabulous celebrations lighting up Palm Springs:

Courtesy of the city of Palm Springs (a.k.a. free events)

July 1: Stay cool while enjoying the family friendly dive-in movie Jungle Cruise. The fun starts at 7:30 p.m. at the Palm Springs Swim Center, 405 S. Pavilion Way, in the Sunrise Plaza Complex.

July 2: Celebrate with a drone show and concert featuring music from Petty and the Heartshakers. 6:30 p.m. at Downtown Park, Museum Way at Belardo Road (adjacent to the Forever Marilyn sculpture).

July 3: Watch the ’80s classic Goonies at Ruth Hardy Park, 700 Tamarisk Road. The flick starts at 7:30 p.m.

July 4: Grab your suits and attend the family-friendly pool party at the Palm Springs Swim Center. There will be water games, an inflatable slide, music, and great food. You can also watch the city’s “All American Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular” at Palm Springs Stadium from the pool. The fun will last from 3 p.m. until the fireworks are over. Palm Springs Swim Center, 405 S. Pavilion Way.

July 4: Concert in the Park: “Turn the Page, Tribute to Bob Seger” in Sunrise Park, 480 S. Sunrise Way, 5:30 p.m.

Fireworks light up the sky. Courtesy of Pixabay

Pay to play

July 4: Independence Day Celebration and Fundraiser for AAP – Food Samaritans

Perched on the mountainside above the Palm Springs Art Museum is the O’Donnell House, where they are holding a benefit for Food Samaritans from 7 p.m. until 10 p.m. Powerhouse singer and entertainer Keisha D will provide the entertainment while Willie Rhine and his highly regarded Eight4Nine team will cater the event. View the city of Palm Springs’ fireworks display at 9:15 p.m. Tickets are $175. For more information, call 760-325-8481 or click the above link.

July 4: Palm Springs Power Baseball “All Stars Summer Collegiate Game,” Palm Springs Stadium, 1901 Baristo Road, 6 p.m. (with fireworks at 9:15 p.m.).

July 4: Palm Springs Cultural Center — There’s something for everyone on the agenda. Rock out to all your favorite ’80s hits with music provided by DJ Mod Girl (she’s a party all by herself!), and relive the campy glory of Rocky IV in an air-conditioned theater (the screening is free!). Hang outside in the cool zone in one of the petite party pools, play fun games to win prizes, and enjoy an All-American barbecue (hamburgers, hot dogs, and potato chips). Additional food and non-alcoholic drinks are available for purchase from the Camelot Cafe and Concessions stand (and alcoholic beverages are available at outside bars). The event starts at 3 p.m., with the fireworks show starting at 9:15. Purchase a seat so you can comfortably watch the show (as part of the price, you’ll also get one of those barbecue meals). 2300 E. Baristo Road.

Stay safe everyone! 

A sparkler sparkles. Photo courtesy of Pixabay

Visitors to Palm Springs have a new way to save with Stash Hotel Rewards loyalty program. The program will launch with nine Palm Springs boutique hotels. 

The hotels are Alcazar Palm Springs, Dive Palm Springs, Inn at Palm Springs, Los Arboles Hotel, Talavera Palm Springs, Mahala, Desert Hills, Orbit In, and The Hideaway. Having the Stash Hotel Rewards platform lets them provide added value to their guests while gaining repeat business.

What is Stash Rewards?

The La Reve Room at Dive Palm Springs with a floral design on the ceiling and hardwood floors and a white bed

The La Reve Room at Dive Palm Springs is a Parisian dream. Photo courtesy of Dive Palm Springs

Founded in 2010, Stash Hotel Rewards is a free loyalty program for independent hotels, with 300 partner properties worldwide and counting. Travelers who sign up for Stash Hotel Rewards earn points when they stay at any participating hotel, and those points can then be cashed in for free nights. The points do not expire and there are no blackout dates. 

Independent boutique hotels are the heart and soul of their cities, and Stash Hotel Rewards Founder Jeff Low believes that’s especially true in Palm Springs. “No chain hotel can compete with the mid-century revivals, the bold eccentric designs, or the laid back, breezy hospitality of these iconic places,” he said. “This is what people come to Palm Springs seeking, and these hotels deliver.”

Since Stash Hotel Rewards points can be redeemed at any participating property, travelers have options: they can always stay at old favorites, try new hotels, or do a combination of both. Newly enrolling members can earn 1,000 Stash-funded Points by signing up at stashrewards.com/palmsprings.

A great deal for travelers

A room at Mahala Hotel in Palm Springs, California, with a large art print of Cher on the wall above a bed with white linens

Cher is the star of the show in this room at the Mahala. Photo courtesy of Mahala

Palm Springs boasts more than 75 boutique hotels, and each hotelier knows how to cater to their clientele and make their property a destination. 

“In today’s market, we’re all looking for the best deal,” Adam Ramirez, founder of Luxe Hospitality Consulting in Palm Springs, said. “Consumers are smart and savvy and know what to look for, and what’s so great about the Palm Springs market is it has such a huge array of independent boutique hotels.” Stash Hotel Rewards gives travelers “an incentive opportunity to stay and get something back time and time again,” he added. “They get to enjoy these hotels and their unique experiences.”

“Big box retailers in the hotel space have their loyalty programs, and Stash allows independent hotels a piece of that pie,” Ramirez said.   

You’re never too old to need your mom.

Welcome to that one time of year when we take time to honor our moms for everything they have done for us. Considering she wiped our butts for the first few years of our lives and put up with our adolescent shenanigans and teen angst, one day doesn’t seem like enough, you know?

So, I’m going to suggest you take mom on a little getaway to Palm Springs, and I’m going to help you out on the planning front because I’m nice like that (and it was my idea, so…).

I’ve got a few hotel suggestions, mostly because they’re gorgeous and more pointedly, they have some sort of spa/wellness services . And Mom deserves a spa treatment or 10, and a cushy bed to rest her head.

First the hotels, and then the Mother’s Day activities. Let’s go.

Stay in style 

L’Horizon: Spa treatments and yoga sweeten the already decadent property. Mom will never forget the pampering she will receive at this very special location. Everything is 5-star here, even the restaurant, SO.PA.

A treatment space at The Spa at L’Horizon. Photo courtesy of L’Horizon

Ingleside Inn: This is the epitome of old Hollywood in Palm Springs, and more than just a gorgeous property. It has a terrific restaurant, Melvyn’s, which also has one of the coolest old school bars in Palm Springs. There is a piano player most nights, and celebrities have been known to sit in. Spa services are available.

Korakia Pensione: Laid-back and groovy, they have a tea service and yoga on the lawn. It’s a Class 1 historic building that sweeps you away. There’s a market on premises with clothes and things from far, far away to add to the exotic feel. Very cool variety of massage and wellness services, offered outdoors or in your room.

Relaxation awaits at Korakia Pensione. Photo courtesy of Korakia Pensione

Andreas Hotel & Spa: Located in the heart of downtown, Mom will enjoy the onsite spa services such as “Me Time” (a 55-minute aromatherapy massage, with a glass of champagne) or the “Summer Delight” (a 55-minute Swedish massage, 55-minute Vital C facial, and champagne). Right next door are two of the best restaurants in Palm Springs: Cheeky’s (breakfast) and Birba (dinner.)

La Serena Villas: The best of all worlds — Whispers Spa is on premises, and the hotel’s restaurant, Azucar, and Sugar High Rooftop Lounge are terrific additions to the light and airy space that permeates the whole place.

Whispers Spa. Photo courtesy of La Serena Villas

Or, you could stay at one of our other wonderful resorts and take Mom to the new Séc-he Spa downtown. For $145 you can get a pass to “Taking the Waters” and enjoy their communal offerings. If you get a massage or facial, that price is waived.

Restaurants with a special May 14 menu

Chi Chi: 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Enjoy a poolside Mother’s Day Brunch, with favorite specials like the Nutella French toast and Alaskan crab benedict on the menu.

LULU: 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. There will be special brunch and dinner offerings. The Mother’s Day dinner is a 3-course delight with a delectable selection of dishes including slow- roasted prime rib, fresh filet of Atlantic salmon, chicken cordon bleu, and much more.

Melvyn’s: 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Indulge with this 3-course Mother’s Day brunch featuring steak Diane and eggs, smoked salmon benedict, and banana bread French toast. For an additional $25, you get bottomless bubbles. Melvyn’s has a luxurious atmosphere — very “old Hollywood/Palm Springs,” and the grounds are lovely.

Labor Pains: A musical Mother’s Day Sunday brunch, at 11 a.m. This “humorous and heartfelt musical look at the joys, memories, trials, and tribulations of motherhood.” During this 4-course brunch, the bubbly and Bloody Marys will be free-flowing, along with fantastic music and laughter. $89

A few more suggestions

I’m going to toss in a few other special places that have not announced yet (and may not), but I think Mom will love them:

Le Vallauris:  Book the patio.

Johannes: German food in a fresh, clean-lined restaurant with terrific wall art.

Pomme Frite: French bistro food and feel.

French Miso: It’s located in La Plaza, but the entrance is just south of the parking. It’s so cute Mom will want photo after photo.

Spencer’s: Located in the old Tennis Club (Class 1 historic building), book the Bougainvillea Room for brunch.

The patio at Spencer’s. Photo courtesy of Visit Palm Springs

If you and your mother are hikers and kitty lovers, take her for an early hike up Araby Trail then pop back down to Frisky Business for a coffee, tea, or nosh and play time with some kitties. Squee!

I haven’t run out of ideas, but I’ve run out of time this month, so happy Mother’s Day to all the moms — and to all the grown kids who are still looking for validation, this might do the trick. I’m kidding…I think.

Dive into savings with Palm Springs Summer Splash 2023, a free pass offering deals at locally-owned and operated boutique hotels, attractions, and stores across Palm Springs, California.

The Palm Springs Summer Splash pass is digital, and there is no app to download. After registering, a pass will be delivered to your phone via text and email once it’s ready to use. The pass is available from June 1 through Sept. 15, 2023, and to redeem a discount, just show the pass on your phone while at one of the participating businesses. A companion Summer Eats pass, offering discounts at various restaurants, is also available.

More than two dozen Palm Springs Preferred Small Hotels are taking part in Summer Splash 2023, offering a variety of specials, including free nights, lower rates, early check-in and late check-out, and daily dining credits.

This year’s boutique hotel participants are: Alcazar Palm Springs; Aloha Hotel; A Place in the Sun Hotel; ARRIVE Palm Springs; Azure Sky Hotel; Blackhaus; Casa Cody; Dive Palm Springs; Descanso Resort; Desert Hills; El Mirasol Villas; The Hacienda at Warm Sands; The Hideaway; Hotel California; Hotel El Cid; Inn at Palm Springs; Mahala; The Marley; The Monkey Tree Hotel; Old Ranch Inn; Orbit In; Santiago Resort; Skylark Hotel; Triangle Inn Palm Springs; Twin Palms Resort; and The Wesley.

“The Palm Springs Summer Splash pass is a great way to discover Palm Springs during the Summer,” Michael C. Green, co-owner of Triangle Inn Palm Springs and chair of Palm Springs Preferred Small Hotels said. “These deals and discounts make it easier to do more things around town, try new businesses, and even extend a vacation. There’s nothing better than having an extra day or two in Palm Springs, and the money saved on lodging can be used for a fabulous dinner downtown, tickets for a show, or to purchase souvenirs at a favorite boutique.”

Palm Springs Summer Splash 2023 is a joint collaboration between Palm Springs Preferred Small Hotels, VisitPalmSprings.com, Desert Gay Tourism Guild, and Small Hotels of Palm Springs. 

Modernism and technology have come together to offer a unique experience at The Cole Palm Springs. The hotel is operated by Sonder, a hospitality management company that utilizes an innovative approach here and in more than 40 cities worldwide.

Sonder was founded on the principle that you can get anything from your mobile phone. You can find rooms and even loft apartments for short-term rentals and make reservations, and are sent an access code on the day of arrival.

At The Cole Palm Springs, check-in time is 4 p.m., and you can come in and swim or find a quiet corner to read in the courtyard until your room is prepared. Once it’s ready, you will receive a text with a code that opens your room’s door. At The Cole, you are instantly transported back to the ’60s, with the rooms artfully decorated by design experts who have incorporated replicas of items that would have been used during the Modernism period.

As you look around the space, you will see a retro mini-bar refrigerator and Victrola Bluetooth stereo. Be sure to look out the window — you’ll likely have a magnificent view of our mountains, which proudly surround our beautiful valley.

The view of the pool from a room at The Cole Hotel in Palm Springs

A typical view from one of the spacious rooms at The Cole Palm Springs. Photo by Kathy Condon

What does a hotel managed by Sonder look like?

On the table on the far wall is a card with a QR code, which, when opened, provides you with several pieces of information, including the number to reach someone on the grounds (they are on call 24 hours) and a code for more towels. There’s also instructions for the television and coffee pot, a list of attractions you might want to check out during your stay in Palm Springs (we have much more happening than just playing golf and sitting around a swimming pool), and the menu and hours of operation for Freddie’s Kitchen at The Cole. By the way, locals are giving this on-site restaurant rave reviews for its excellent food.

There are a couple of things you also should be aware of when staying at The Cole: this is an adults-only hotel, dogs are not allowed, and there is a charge of $15 per day for parking.

A blue door

The Cole has several one-of-a-kind doors. Photo by Nadine Conger

Who developed Sonder?

Co-founder and CEO Francis Davidson’s vision was created over time. It began when he started managing apartments, and kept seeing the same patterns and issues repeating. By recording those issues and matching travelers’ needs, he was able to create a new plan for managing short-term rentals. Sonder was officially formed in Montreal in 2014, with the help of Martin Picard, now the company’s chief real estate officer.

Sonder’s mission is to “redefine hospitality by bringing exceptional stays everywhere,” and they are doing this by utilizing the technology of a mobile phone;  developing relationships with world-class architects and designers to ensure each space meets the established high standards; minimizing the company’s environmental footprint (for example, single-use plastic has been eliminated from all properties); and offering 24/7 support and easy check-in and check-out.

Palm Springs looks back at its history through Modernism Week each year. The Cole represents that period, with its décor that harkens back to the era. However, with the help of Sonder, it is among the most forward-thinking, technology-run hotels in the Coachella Valley.

The sign in front of The Cole Hotel in Palm Springs

Your sign that you’ve arrived at The Cole Hotel in Palm Springs. Photo by Nadine Conger