With sunny 80-degree days, scant rainfall and so many new hotels you can barely keep up, winter never arrived this year in Palm Springs. Ahead of the city's annual Modernism Week
kicking off the 15th of February, springtime arrives in the desert
that's blossoming with new development, innovative restaurants and a
dream-fueled spirit of new bohemia. A new hotel tower known as the Rowan by Kimpton looms over the city's revitalizing downtown with glassy new retail complex flanked by promising new projects from Andaz and 750 Lofts (pictured) - which could become the city's best urban resort complex to date.
Around town, talk of real estate and architecture is always just a change of conversation away. A recent property boom has drowned out memories of 2008 that saw local house prices drop almost in half. But Palm Springs newcomers priced-out of LA and other Southern California markets speak of traffic-free roads, friendlier locals and focus on the new coffeehouses and bars popping-up along Palm Canyon. At the new Rowan you’ll find a plethora of bar and restaurant options from poolside High Bar and late-night Window Bar to finer-dining 4 Saints helmed by the former sous-chef of The Four Seasons Hotel Chicago. Uptown you'll find Sandfish, the town's first new sushi eatery in years with lively whisky speakeasy that brings a boho spirit to traditional Japanese dining. And in South Palm Springs, Evzin brings a modern Mediterranean eatery to town with a stunning mid-century design and menu many consider the best newcomer this year.
By night, the stillness of the desert sky yields to the more charming nightspots you’ll find from one end of Palm Canyon to the other. The Ingleside Inn got a fresh new look over the last year compliments of Plump Jack - owners of the famous winery and properties like Plump Jack Squaw Valley Inn. Its famous Melvyn's still feels of the times, however, with its throwback Casablanca Lounge with nightly entertainment featuring crooners and Sunday night jazz sessions. With its posh location in Tennis Club neighborhood that's walkable to downtown, it captures the spirit of old Palm Springs at a time when everything's about what's new in the desert.