The End Of Desert X Is Only The Beginning Of (Mostly) Free Art In Greater Palm Springs
A slew of new hotels across the Southern California desert, combining pool culture of old and millennial hedonism, have put the nine cities of Greater Palm Springs across everyone’s lips as one of the Golden State’s best ‘secret’ getaways.
The Midcentury Modern mecca of Palm Springs is usually the first port of call, but with the Coachella Arts and Music Festival in Indio, the upcoming Indigo Hotel opening in the City of Coachella, a Martin Bullard-redesigned hotel opened in Indian Wells and the ubiquitous Desert X 2019 across all nine cities (and bordering the Salton Sea), April is set to be one of the region’s most dynamic months for visitation.
The Other Side - Literally - Of Greater Palm Springs
Nowhere else in the world has this art phenomenon taken place. In 2017, overnight, 15 art installations popped up throughout the nine cities of Greater Palm Springs, breaking Instagram in 2017.
2019 sees a total of 19 installations in all new locations throughout the desert by all new artists. Each installation tells a different, deeply-felt story ranging from sustainability to immigration. The installations are meant to convey a sense of place to humans who usually only have sky and mountains to measure themselves up against in the desert. Installations can be visited by self-drives, or bus tours are available until Desert X ends April 21, 2019.
www.desertx.orgOpens a New Window., Desert X Bus Tours = $75 www.desertx.org/plan-your-visitOpens a New Window.
DIY Artwalks in Greater Palm Springs
Perhaps the greatest signifier of the renaissance of Palm Springs and her sister cities is the surge of free and accessible public art – ranging from high-brow installations in El Paseo’s shopping district to murals in Palm Desert and La Quinta. The eastern-most Coachella Murals is a publicly-funded initiative to boost local artists by commissioning murals throughout blank walls around the city’s growing civic center. The murals reflect the area’s agrarian and Latin American history. Moving west in Palm Desert and La Quinta, local artists are displaying works on everywhere from hiking trails to public libraries, giving art lovers a mix of urban and nature-based canvases to ponder.
The Coachella Arts and Music Festival
Funnily enough the Coachella Arts and Music Festival doesn’t even take place in the city of Coachella. It takes place in the neighboring city of Indio, in the posh and manicured polo fields – as does the popular country music festival Stagecoach. One of the resident artists this year for Coachella – an Indio native named Sofia Enriquez – is in charge of some of the art installations guests will interact with on the grounds. She’s gone from making skirts for Coachella-goers to running the art department at the festival. But she’s still available for commissions (maybe after Coachella):
www.sofiaenriquez.comOpens a New Window.
Sands Hotel & Spa
Hot tea in the desert might not seem like a natural choice, but Sands Hotel & Spa in Indian Wells – recently redesigned by celebrity designer Martin Bullard – is taking its Midcentury Moroccan design to a whole new level: Weekend Moroccan High Tea on the lenai. Available by reservations on the weekend only – and fancy hats encouraged – this high tea in the desert includes all the stylings you’d expect from Modern Morocco, from the serving trays to the sweet treats to the tea.
sandshotelandspa.comOpens a New Window.
Andaz Palm Springs
The Andaz Palm Springs is already leaving travelers salivating with its full-floor spa and swim-up bar – but they’ll have to wait until Fall 2019 for the opening.
Hotel Indigo Coachella Valley
At the other side of the Coachella Valley, Hotel Indigo becomes the first major resort hotel to open in the city of Coachella, also opening Fall 2019. The hotel’s casita-style hotel rooms, marijuana dispensary and salt-water Vegas-style pool (salt water helps keep cool in the desert heat) is sure to become the resting place/party center for Coachella-goers.
2019 Hotel Indigo (250 rooms)
2020 Montage La Quinta (140 rooms)
2020 Pendry La Quinta (200 rooms)
2019 Renaissance Indian Wells (room renovations)
2019 JW Marriott Desert Springs (884 room renovation)
2019 Best Western Plus (90 rooms)
DESERT HOT SPRINGS
2018 Two Bunch Palms (facility renovation)
2018 Infusion Beach Hotel (62-room renovation)
2018 Movie Colony Hotel (16-room renovation)
2019 Andaz Palm Springs (150 rooms)
2019 Dream Hotel (170 rooms)
2019 750 Lofts (39 rooms)
2020 The Bode (36 full-service rooms)
NEW AIRLIFT INTO PSP
Newark (EWR) United Airlines flies daily into PSP from 12/20/18-4/8/19
Portland (PDX) Sun Country launches Sunday and Thursday flights into PSP from 11/14/18
Atlanta (ATL) Delta Airlines launches Saturday flights from 1/5/19-3/30/19
Chicago (ORD) Frontier Airlines launches twice weekly service 12/14/18
Calgary (YYC) Air Canada launched daily flights from 10/28/18-4/30/19
Boston (BOS) JetBlue will fly four times weekly from 2/14/19-4/29/19