palm springs travel guide

Palm Springs

PALM SPRINGS TRAVEL GUIDE

Happy Tuesday! Today's post dives into Palm Springs--one of the favorite spots from my recent US road trip (and from photos alone it's not very hard to see why). 

100 miles east of LA, Palm Springs was once the chic getaway of Rat Pack stars like Sinatra and Elvis back in the '50s and '60s. Today, over 3.5 million visitors come each year to enjoy the stunning desert set amongst the snow-capped mountains. While there's certainly plenty to see + do here to keep you busy for weeks, you'll likely find yourself slip into a easy-going state of mind from the moment you arrive that prompts you to simply relax.  But regardless of what you choose to do with your itinerary, it's impossible not to fall head over heels for this retro-chic town filled with natural beauty, impressive design and delicious food.   

 

PACK

What you should pack really revolves around your itinerary (for example, your suitcase should look very different if you plan to fill your days with golf over lounging poolside). So rather than speaking to concrete items to add to your list, let's talk more about Palm Springs style. As previously mentioned, it's Rat-Pack history sets the tone for a town that's vibrant and retro chic. Couple that with the fact that the town's name literally has the word "Palm" in it, and it's pretty obvious that you can have fun with a few trends:

PALM PRINT

Call me cliché, but I couldn't resist rocking a palm print romper while in Palm Springs. There are so many fun palm products right now that I can't see why you wouldn't want bring some along.

COLOR POPS

It's no secret that Palm Springs has no shortage of bright colors. Let that mindset guide your packing by bringing along bold pops of color in everything from a romper to your bathing suit. 

If you've never heard of The Saguaro Hotel (which I mention in my Scottsdale post) you're likely a bit behind on your reading, because it's been featured in Vogue, ELLE, Dwell, Refinery29 and Esquire (to name a few). Not big on reading online media? Well then you've likely noticed dozens and dozens of influencers posting photos here-- especially during festivals like Coachella or Stagecoach.  Regardless of  whether or not you've heard of it before, the important thing to note is that you know about it before you book your own trip to Palm Springs-- because staying here hands down made our trip as fun as it was. We spent so much of our time on the property, whether in our room, at the restaurant or especially at the pool (but more about that in a minute). While it's not the most luxurious hotel I've ever stayed in, it's definitely one of the most fun and truly unique. 

The Saguaro offers a youthful + vibrant take on Palm Springs that's sure to make your trip a lot more fun-- we kept saying we felt like we were on "Adult Spring Break!" If you prefer someplace that's laid back + inclusive rather than extravagantly posh, look no further than The Saguaro. 

the saguaro palm springs
the saguaro palm springs california
the saguaro palm springs
the saguaro palm springs
the saguaro palm springs california
the saguaro palm springs california
ace hotel palm springs kings highway

Immediately when we arrived in Palm Springs, we went straight to Ace Hotel to dine at King's Highway. This property was once a mid-century desert modern former Westward Ho with a Denny's attached. They renovated it, gave it some love and today it's one of the most popular hotels (and restaurants) in Palm Springs. 

King's Highway is a roadside diner, helmed by award-winning Chef Carlo Guaradado. It celebrates the bohemian spirit of the wide open West. The menu focuses deep on Chef Salgado's commitment to using heirloom ingredients and locally-sourced produce to create exceptional fare for desert diners. We pretty much had it all: tacos, burgers, salads, cocktails- you name it. Everything was delicious and the atmosphere was relaxed, retro and perfect for a "Welcome to Palm Springs" lunch. 

KINGS HIGHWAY ACE HOTEL PALM SPRINGS
KINGS HIGHWAY ACE HOTEL PALM SPRINGS
KINGS HIGHWAY ACE HOTEL PALM SPRINGS
KINGS HIGHWAY ACE HOTEL PALM SPRINGS
ACE HOTEL PALM SPRINGS
TRIO PALM SPRINGS

For our first dinner we went to TRIO, also know by the locals as "Where Palm Springs Eats." This place was buzzing with energy and brimming with people (they were on a wait so be sure to make reservations if you want to avoid that). I can't say enough great things about our meal-- every detail from the service, to the food quality to the atmosphere was great. They serve brunch, lunch and dinner so you can go anytime of day. If you go at dinner like we did, I'd recommend trying some of our favorites. For starters, go with the Hand Cut Potato Chips or Seafood Cocktail. For entrées, either the Trio Mac and 5 Cheese, Pork Chop or Skirt Steak. And for drinks, be sure to try one of their signature cocktails (I loved the Spatini with cucumber vodka, lime juice + muddled cucumber). 

No matter when you decide to visit, be sure to include TRIO on your Palm Springs itinerary for a guaranteed good time and delicious experience! 

 

 

BIRBA PALM SPRINGS

BIRBA PALM SPRINGS CALIFORNIA

Another favorite meal we had was our second dinner at an al fresco Italian restaurant: Birba. From the moment we walked into the outdoor garden space (which is surrounded by fichus trees strung with white lights) we were in love. Luckily, the food is just as wonderful as the beautiful atmosphere, offering a wide variety of cocktails + specialty pizzas. Probably my favorite part is that all pizzas have a cauliflower crust option (that's actually quite delicious) so you can still feel like you're splurging without the overload of carbohydrates. Regardless of your crust preference, these pizzas are sure to wow you with their creativity. Mine had Basil, Kale, White Corn, Leeks, Squash Blossom and Burrata (YUM). They had dozens of others (including  pistachio pesto, asparagus onion + artichoke or prosciutto, honey + chile oil ) that sounded incredible, which just gives me a reason to go back!

If pizza isn't your preference, Birba also prides itself on carefully curated dishes like ricotta gnocchi or Nonna's Meatballs (which are also delicious-- we had some for a starter!) Whatever you order, I can assure you Birba will not disappoint in the slightest and I highly recommend coming for dinner while in Palm Springs. 

BIRBA PALM SPRINGS
BIRBA PALM SPRINGS
THE BROKEN YOLK CAFE

We had an awesome morning at The Broken Yolk - one of California's breakfast favorites. They had a huge selection of breakfast staples including over 20 types of omelettes, fresh squeezed orange juice + Mimosas-- all were delicious. If you're looking for a spot with plenty of options and healthy portion sizes to fuel your day, this is a great spot in the heart of Palm Springs I highly recommend! 

MORE DINING RECOMMENDATIONS INCLUDE:

CHEEKY'S (BREAKFAST ALL DAY)

WORKSHOP KITCHEN + BAR

JOHANNE'S

ELIXIR

DEAD OR ALIVE WINE BAR

BAR

 

DO

POOL AT THE SAGUARO

the saguaro palm springs

As previously mentioned, we spent a ton of time at The Saguaro pool. This place has amazing vibes and feels like a quintessential Palm Springs party. Enjoy delicious cocktails, float in a variety of fun inflatables (which they provide for both you and your drink), enjoy the DJ playing music on the weekends or simply marvel at the snow-capped mountains in the distance while soaking up the sun. There are dozens of ways to fill your day with fun here and I loved all of them. 

 

I know other hotels in the area also have great pools-- we just didn't experinece any others because why would we leave someplace so fun? If it ain't broke...

the saguaro palm springs california
JOSHUA TREE NATIONAL PARK

Stay tuned for tomorrow's post... I've got a lot more to share about this easy excursion that's a quick little jaunt outside of Palm Springs.

 

SOME OTHER ACTIVITY RECOMMENDATIONS INCLUDE:

THE LIVING DESERT

UPTOWN DESIGN DISTRICT

INDIAN CANYONS

 

 

So there you have it! Our Palm Springs getaway was simply unforgettable and I certainly plan on returning. Whether you're wanting to getaway with girlfriends, your significant other or any other type of group, I'd argue Palm Springs has something for everyone and will provide you with a great time. Any other questions about this desert oasis? Let me know in the comments below!

 

Stay tuned tomorrow for a post about our time in Joshua Tree National Park!

xx

Whitney