My Seakettle posts might give the false impression that I spend all my time baking. (so. many. desserts!) In reality, though, a pie chart of my time would be happily split between creating things (including desserts, but also websites, gifts, decorations), and traveling. Oh, and squeeze in a little time to do research for those two things — actually, make that a lot of time — since I’m a maximizer to the max. (And let’s just leave cleaning and grocery shopping etc. off my happy pie chart. The more you travel, the less frequently you have to do those things!)
Anyway, I’d love to document our crazy travels here on Seakettle, if you wouldn’t mind hearing about them! We can test it out with Palm Springs. Let me know what you think!
Palm Springs is in the desert, about an hour and half east of LA. It has a long history as a resort town — a warm winter escape for the rich and famous (and the old and ailing). True to form, it was 80 degrees when we visited in January. (In fairness to the San Fernando Valley, it was even warmer at our house.)
Greg and I have driven past Palm Springs many times on our way to Arizona, but never stopped. After seeing Palm Springs popping up in my feed reader and realizing that people are flying to California just to visit Palm Springs, I figured we better go see what the fuss is all about!
Things We Loved:
Even though we weren’t staying at one of Palm Springs’ chic boutique hotels, we enjoyed wandering around their public lobbies and gardens. The courtyard at the Saguaro is bursting with color and bass (and bocce ball!). The Ace pool is also hopping, but we just wandered through their macrame-riddled lobby and past the giant ACE sign in the parking lot. Their dark bar looked like a cool retreat from the Palm Springs heat! We also enjoyed the quirky lobby and beautiful grounds at the Parker Palm Springs, where you can enjoy a cocktail (coconut mojito!) in any number of little outdoor seating areas.
I couldn’t quite afford to buy the furniture, but I definitely appreciated the mid-century vibe oozing out of every shop and restaurant in Palm Springs. Dazzles is a fun and jam-packed little shop. I also loved browsing the fancy curated furniture galleries just to see some of the unusual mid-century pieces!
We enjoyed brunch — particularly the bacon flights — at Cheeky’s (even though we’re convinced that they labelled the slices incorrectly)!
I can’t remember the last time I had a milk shake, but in Palm Springs we bought them twice! Great Shakes had tons of super delicious options, plus an adorable mini donut on top. Cuteness. A bit outside of town, we headed to Windmill Market & Produce for their famous date shakes. I assumed I wouldn’t like them (I didn’t even order my own.), but it was SO good!
The View from Mt. San Jacinto
The aerial tramway ride was a bit pricey, the staff was unfriendly, and we were packed like sardines (Sunday midday), but the views from the top were wonderful. It’s 30 degrees cooler at the top and a completely different world — more like hiking near Yosemite than a mile from the desert! Wear tennis shoes (my bad) if you plan to leave the building at all — it’s a downhill series of switchbacks right off the bat. You can sign up for a free wilderness permit to hike away from the crowds (at the bottom of the hill, head to your right to the ranger station), though the city views are to the left (where all the people are!).
The Proximity to Joshua Tree National Park
Having never previously stopped at Joshua Tree, either, Greg and I spent the last night of our long weekend camping there. It’s such a beautiful desert landscape! The Joshua trees are cool, of course, but my favorite plants were the chollas. I could write a whole post on our day in Joshua Tree, so maybe I will!
We have to go back for:
• Hiking, particularly to Palm Canyon and McCallum Oasis
• Visiting the date farms, in season
• A picnic with lunch from The Sandwich Spot
• Staying at one of the boutique hotels
• Modernism Week (happening now!)
• Dinner in a restaurant. Ha! (We had waffles for dinner — homemade, in our hotel room, without utensils! It was amazing.)
If you know of any hidden gems in Palm Springs, please share!