Palm Springs Getaway Insider Tips
By Annette Vartanian, Blogger & SoCal Local
I’ve been enjoying getaways in Palm Springs since before I could walk. These early trips taught me the fine art of relaxation, the importance of good food, the value of making time for vintage shopping, and how to appreciate great architecture. If a girls’ weekend called for a recipe, then all of these ingredients make for the perfect getaway. Once a haven for Hollywood’s Rat Pack, Palm Springs is now home to stylish boutique hotels, hip eateries, and a super-cool bar and pool scene. There are a lot of trendy places to stay, eat, and see in Palm Springs, but it’s the lesser-known spots that make a weekend getaway with the girls even better.
These are my recommendations for a weekend that pays homage to the art of a girls’ getaway.
Where to Stay
Korakia Pensione: This Moroccan-meets-Mediterranean-style resort oozes relaxation and serves as the perfect backdrop to reconnect with the girls. The extra-large suites and villas are great for a small group, and the lush grounds are a great place to enjoy some quiet time. This is my favorite hotel to escape to when all I need is some quiet time with my girls.
The Amado: For a place that’s designed for a more celebratory getaway (read: bachelorette party), the Amado combines all the benefits of a boutique hotel with the comforts of a private residence. It’s a great spot for a larger group, as you can rent individual suites or all 6 suites on the property.
Where to Brunch
Cheeky’s: There’s always a wait to snag a table at Cheeky’s so it’s definitely not a secret spot, but the seasonal breakfast and brunch menu is well worth the wait. The secret to getting a table faster at Cheeky’s? Try Friday and Saturday brunch in lieu of Sunday brunch, and your taste buds will thank you. Always go for the bacon flight, French toast and agua fresca!
Where to Dine
Rooster and the Pig: For a low-key dinner, Rooster and the Pig is a delicious Asian-fusion restaurant tucked in a discreet corner of a strip mall. What this place lacks in charm, it makes up in its culinary offerings. Order a little bit of everything to share around the table, and enjoy a cocktail before heading out for drinks.
Workshop: Workshop brings a bit of Los Angeles to the desert with delectable dishes and an ultra-stylish interior. It’s to place to see and be seen on a Saturday night with the girls.
Bernie’s Lounge and Supper Club: Bernie’s combines the allure of a 60s lounge with a modern menu. I recommend this place, as it features a trendy dinner menu with a side of 60s nostalgia—complete with live entertainment!
Great Shakes: As the name indicates, this is the place to get the best shakes in town. Great Shakes features a giant wall menu filled with traditional and adventurous shakes and flavors. Every shake is topped with homemade whipped cream and a mini doughnut on the straw! If you’re anything like me (someone who eats ice cream for a meal), then this is worth battling the crowds in Downtown Palm Springs.
Where to Drink
Hacienda Cantina & Beach Club: The Hacienda Cantina & Beach Club features live DJ music, an outdoor bar and cabanas for a truly decadent pool-party scene. If you’re celebrating with the girls, then gather everyone together and spend Sunday afternoon at Hacienda to round out the weekend.
Birba: Birba is located right next door to the famous Cheeky’s. The open patio is the perfect place to unwind with an aperitif after a long day and before heading out to dinner. The lounge seating around the patio ensures you’ll make fast friends with the people sitting next to you—one of the many things I love about Palm Springs.
Bootlegger Tiki: Bootlegger Tiki is in the Uptown Design District and is a super cool experience in itself. It serves up the best fruity cocktails in town and is a great place to ring in the evening with the girls.
Where to Relax
Elements Spa at Hilton Hotel: Palm Springs has a lot of spas, but Elements is the only place that will leave you feeling completely relaxed after your treatment and throughout the whole weekend. The Eucalyptus-infused steam room and the Swiss shower are unparalleled and make me wish every weekend was a girls’ getaway. This is my go-to spa spot on every trip—a girl just can’t turn down a Eucalyptus-infused steam room!
At the Pool: The simple act of lounging by the pool and drinking a refreshing cucumber water is relaxing. Make time to enjoy the pool with a good book or calming tunes. The Korakia tops my list, as their pool scene is uber calming and makes me feel like I don’t have a single worry in the world.
What to Do
Neighborhood Tour: Borrow a bike from the hotel or rent one at BIKE Palm Springs, and hit the town. Ride through the Movie Colony and Sunnylands neighborhoods to see the creme de la creme of midcentury modern homes. Swing by the Canyon Country Club area to spot a variety of colorful homes, including #thatpinkdoor! Not only will you work out your senses, but also those glutes as you ride street to street.
Vintage Shopping: You can’t make a trip to Palm Springs without doing some vintage shopping. Some trips to the desert with my girlfriends are designed for the very act of vintage shopping. Dazzles is a must-see, as it has a colorful selection of glassware, jewelry and rattan furniture. The store is a feast for the eyes. The Shops at Thirteen Forty Five carry a varied selection of post-modern furniture and accessories, as well as new and vintage art, vintage jewelry and clothing. The swanky font on the exterior of the building is begging to be Instgrammed. Finally, the Palm Canyon Galleria is an arcade of shops located in Downtown Palm Springs that showcases midcentury decor, including furniture, sculptures, art, ceramics, jewelry and books. Try not to spend an entire day here, which is difficult, as there is so much good design to look at.
“Dive-in” Movie: This is a new to-do in Palm Springs, but definitely fun for a girls’ getaway. ARRIVE hotel features a “dive-in” movie on Thursdays. It’s free and open to non-hotel guests; it’s a great place to catch a flick, have a drink and dip in the pool.
Moorten Botanical Garden: Moorten is a tranquil botanical garden with thousands of cacti and other spiny desert plants. Need a succulent or two for your place? This place has it all, plus it makes for a great Instagram photo op!
If you’re anything like me, you won’t get enough of this sunshine-drenched desert oasis. My take on it? Don’t fight the urge to plan a girls’ getaway on a regular basis. Palm Springs is calling you!
Annette Vartanian is the curator behind the A Vintage Splendor blog. Known for her sophisticated meets vintage style, Annette has a distinct eye for the ever evolving mix of new with old and classic meets eclectic. A Vintage Splendor aims to inspire the everyday woman with elevated yet approachable style: whether it’s the frocks hanging in her closet, décor gracing her home, or a cocktail soirée needing that je ne sais quoi.