Greater Palm Springs is Southern California’s premier resort, entertainment, golf and tennis destination. With nine very distinct cities – Palm Springs, Desert Hot Springs, Cathedral City, Rancho Mirage, Palm Desert, Indian Wells, La Quinta, Indio and Coachella, there’s always something new going on in the Oasis. Check out some of the latest developments.
Air Canada Launches New Seasonal Service, YYZ-PSP
Air Canada is launching new seasonal service between Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ) and Palm Springs International Airport (PSP) on its leisure carrier, Air Canada Rouge. The non-stop flight will commence December 14, 2016.
Virgin America Expands Palms Springs Service to Year-Round
Virgin America announced that its nonstop service between San Francisco (SFO) and Palm Springs International Airport (PSP) will now be expanded to year-round service, starting February 2016.
JetBlue Continues Nonstop Service, JFK-PSP
JetBlue launched seasonal, non-stop service between John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) and Palm Springs international Airport. Flights operate five days a week, from Thursday through Monday, from Jan. 14 to May 1, 2016.
American Airlines Non-Stop Flights, ORD to PSP begin in October
American Airlines non-stop service from Chicago-O’Hare International Airport (ORD) to Palm Springs International Airport will resume on Oct. 2, 2016.
FESTIVALS & EVENTS
Splash House – June 10-12, 2016 & August 12-14, 2016
Splash House returns to the desert this summer for poolside antics and world-class music. Essentially a summer party for those old enough to drink alcohol, this uniquely Oasis event will unfold at the Saguaro Hotel and the Riviera Palm Springs, a Tribute Portfolio Resort.
Palm Springs International Short Film Festival (Short Fest) – June 21-27, 2016
One of the most acclaimed short film showcases in the world, the Palm Springs International Short Film Festival, now in its 21st year, showcases more than 300 short films from 50 countries.
PBS Antiques Roadshow – August 6, 2016
The hit PBS Television show Antiques Roadshow brings its knowledge to the desert this summer. The Palm Springs Convention Center will host the 13-time Emmy Award-nominated show on August 6, 2016, and the general public can bring up two items to have them appraised. Tickets must be reserved in advance.
Comic Con – August 26-28, 2016
Comic Con Palm Springs brings together some of the most talented people from the world of comic books and entertainment for an exciting new comic con event. This event, hosted at the Renaissance Hotel, Palm Springs and the Palm Springs Convention Center, features a special appearance by Stan Lee.
Cinema Diverse LGBT Film Festival – September 22-25, 2016
A weekend long festival of feature films, documentaries and short films themed around issues and themes for LGBT community.
Desert Trip Festival – October 7-9 & 14-16, 2016
This once-in- a-lifetime concert will take place in Indio, Calif., where six of the world’s most iconic and influential rock and roll artists come together for Desert Trip . Both weekends offer three nights of concerts, including Friday night with The Rolling Stones and Bob Dylan and His Band. On Saturday night, Paul McCartney and Neil Young + Promise of the Real rock the house. Closing out the festivities, are Roger Waters and The Who on Sunday . With performances starting after sunset, each artist will play a full set, serving up three incomparable nights of rock ‘n roll. Located at the home of the critically acclaimed Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, this is the only time and place you’ll be able to see this legendary lineup.
Modernism Week Fall Preview – October 21-23, 2016
Modernism Week Fall Preview will feature a selection of highlights of the best events from the February festival, including architectural walking and bike tours, festive cocktail parties, home tours, stimulating lectures, the not-to-be-missed Premier Double Decker Architectural Bus Tours, classic cars, the Modernism Show & Sale, tours of Sunnylands, and more. Tickets go on sale August 1, 2016.
The CareerBuilder Challenge – January 16-22, 2017
This year Phil Mickelson replaces Bill Clinton as ambassador for CareerBuilder Challenge. A Southern California native, 42-time PGA TOUR winner and five-time major champion, Mickelson will promote the tournament and participate in various functions during tournament week.
BNP Paribas Open – March 6-9, 2017
Tommy Haas has been named Tournament Director of the BNP Paribas Open, the largest WTA and ATP World Tour combined two-week event in the world. A former World No. 2, Haas has won 15 ATP World Tour titles in his career, advanced to multiple Grand Slam semifinals, including the Australian Open (1999, 2002, 2007) and Wimbledon (2009), and earned a silver medal at the 2000 Summer Olympics. The German posted a 25-13 record at Indian Wells, reaching back-to-back quarterfinals in 2007 and 2008.
HOTEL DEVELOPMENTS—On the Horizon
Kimpton Hotel Palm Springs
Construction is underway for a six-story, 155-room Kimpton brand hotel set to open in 2017 as part of the Downtown Palm Springs Project. Located on North Palm Canyon Drive, the property will include a rooftop pool, the first of its kind in the city.
Hotel El Paseo, Palm Desert
Construction has begun on the new-build Hotel Paseo, a boutique property located in the El Paseo Shopping District in Palm Desert. The $36 million, three-story, 150-room hotel is expected to open in fall 2017.
Andaz Palm Springs
Slated to open in 2018, this 150-room, 13-suite luxury lifestyle hotel will be located in the heart of downtown Palm Springs, adjacent to the vibrant Uptown Design District and within walking distance of the shops, restaurant and galleries that line famed Palm Canyon Drive.
SilverRock Resort, La Quinta
A new $420 million project proposed for the City of La Quinta, the SilverRock Resort will include a five-star, 140-room luxury hotel and spa and a four-star, 200-room lifestyle hotel. Also in the works is a 150,000-square-foot resort village, with residential units and up to 40,000 square feet of retail space and recreation areas. The project also includes a mini riverfront promenade, a conference center with ballroom and meeting space and recreation areas such as water facilities, community gardens, luxury camping and trails, a permanent clubhouse area with large patios and an event lawn space. The project is scheduled to break ground in early 2017.
Virgin Hotels Palm Springs
In the heart of downtown Palm Springs, the new Virgin Hotels Palm Springs will feature 150-rooms and suites, multiple dining and drinking outlets, including The Commons Club, meetings spaces and a rooftop terrace and pool overlooking the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains. Virgin Hotels Palm Springs will be a new-build property designed by local architect Chris Pardo and is expected to open in late 2018.
Hyde Hotel & Residences Coachella Valley
sbe, a lifestyle hospitality company that develops, manages and operates numerous award-wining hospitality venues in Los Angeles and Las Vegas, will open Hyde Hotel & Residences in Coachella Valley in early 2017. Hyde Hotel & Residences Coachella Valley will feature 350 guest rooms, comprised of 150 two-bedroom condo units, 40 luxury suites – some with private plunge pools, and 10 luxury two-bedroom stand-alone villas. The property will also include Hyde Kitchen and Cocktails, a destination spa, and meeting and event facilities.
Vision Caliente – Spa Hotel
The Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians Tribal Council announced it will partner with JCJ Architecture of San Diego to create a master plan for 22 acres in downtown Palm Springs at Tahquitz Canyon Way and Indian Canyon Drive. The property was once the home of the Spa Hotel, which the Tribe closed in July 2014, and is also anchored by the Tribe's culturally significant ancient Hot Mineral Spring. The site has operated since the late 1800s, providing access to the healing water for hundreds of thousands of people for more than 100 years.
For updates, visit www.visionaguacaliente.com
Orchid Tree Resort & Spa
The Community Church of Palm Springs is on a path that could take it from ruins to luxury hotel. The 3.1-acre site, which includes the badly damaged church and bungalows, will become a five-story resort hotel and spa complex. Gwynne Pugh of Urban Studio in Santa Monica is the architect and construction is anticipated to begin later this year.
750 Lofts Hotel
The 750 Lofts Hotel is planned for the Uptown Design District and will be developed as a four-story, 38-room hotel with eight two-story lofts along with retail and a restaurant on ground floor.
HOTEL DEVELOPMENTS - Recently Opened Hotels
ARRIVE Palm Springs
The 32-room contemporary, midcentury modern-inspired hotel ARRIVE Palm Springs opened in February 2016 in the north end of the Uptown Design District. Designed by Chris Pardo, ARRIVE Palm Springs features an open floor plan, a luxurious wet room and an abundance of natural light. The property includes the 80-seat Reservoir restaurant with al fresco dining, a 66-foot pool and 20-foot Jacuzzi. ARRIVE is a new hotel brand by former Facebook employee Ezra Callahan.
The Monkey Tree Hotel
The Monkey Tree Hotel is a newly redesigned and renovated 16-room midcentury modern hotel located in Palm Springs’ up the street from Charlie Farrell’s famous Racquet Club. The Monkey Tree Hotel was designed in 1960 by Albert Frey as a hotel getaway for celebrities like Lucille Ball, Gene Wilder, Eric Clapton and even John F. Kennedy and Marilyn Monroe.
HOTEL DEVELOPMENTS – Renovations
DoubleTree by Hilton
Formerly the Desert Princess, the DoubleTree by Hilton completed a multi-million-dollar renovation in early 2016. The resort now features 289 contemporary guestrooms and suites, a new bar, modernized Olympic-sized pool and spa, an enhanced restaurant experience, new lobby and a brand new 1,300 sq. ft. fitness center. In addition, the property has 23,000 sq. ft. of flexible meeting and event space and a beautiful outdoor wedding venue.
L’Horizon Resort & Spa
After undergoing a $25 million renovation, L’Horizon Resort & Spa re-opened in July 2015. The property, formerly known as the Horizon Hotel, was originally built in 1952 and designed by famed architect William Cody. The property is the home of the glamourous new SO•PA (see below) led by Michelin Star chef Chris Anderson. The property is the only hotel in the Coachella Valley that’s a member of Leading Hotels of the World.
Avalon Hotel and Bungalows
The 67-room property, formerly known as the Viceroy Palm Springs, re-opened as the Avalon Hotel and bungalows in August 2015. The property has updated its award-winning Estrella Spa and introduced a new Chi Chi restaurant.
Starwood Expands to Palm Springs
Tribute Portfolio Resorts, the newest independent brand from Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide, Inc. took over the ownership of the Riviera Palm Springs in 2016. The property, now called the Riviera Palm Springs, a Tribute Portfolio Resort, underwent a multi-million-dollar upgrade, including the addition of a new pool bar, wedding pavilion and enhanced lobby.
Chateau at Lake La Quinta
With a resort feel reminiscent of a French Manor, the 24-room Chateau at Lake La Quinta is only one of a handful of few properties in the Coachella Valley with a waterside setting. The property, which opened in October 2015, features an on-site restaurant and bar, an entertainment patio with a fire pit and a 24-hour pool.
Palm Mountain Resort & Spa
The Palm Mountain Resort & Spa, located in downtown Palm Springs finished an extensive upgrade in December 2015, including the addition of 20 new guest rooms. Other updates include a new lobby, a new banquet area and a brand new restaurant space.
Recently renovated, the 11-room boutique property re-opened in October 2015 on the site of the historic Deep Well Ranch. With three beautifully landscaped gardens, a pool and activities area and a guest lounge, the hotel is designed for relaxing. A full-service kitchen, BBQ area and the fire pit are shared by all the guests and offer an alternative to dining out.
THINGS TO DO
Palm Springs Aerial Tramway Upgrades
The Palm Springs Aerial Tramway is getting ready to launch a multi-million-dollar renovation. In the meantime, look for a new restaurant concept with menus that feature more local ingredients and items sourced from local farms and farmers. And take your Instagram game to new heights as the Aerial Tramway soon rolls out brand-new WiFi service.
Escape Room Palm Springs
Challenge your mind with this thrilling new adventure, which opened in February 2016. You’re trapped in a specially themed room and your group only has 45-minutes to solve a series of challenges that will ultimately unlock the puzzle that leads to escape. With each clue solved, the story behind each room is slowly revealed.
Sunny Cycle Palm Springs
Discover a new, eco-friendly way to explore Palm Springs with Sunny Cycle Palm Springs, an electric limousine cycle. With a flat screen TV, stereo sound system, USB port phone chargers, misters, under-carriage lighting, under-canopy lighting, and an electric motor assist function, the bike accommodates all user capabilities. Up to 15 passengers may ride on the Sunny Cycle.
New Interiors Tour from Palm Springs Mod Squad
Take an exclusive look inside three midcentury Palm Springs houses, with a new tour from Palm Springs Mod Squad. See why Desert Modern design remains as popular today it was 60 years ago. With a maximum of five individuals per tour, Palm Springs Mod Squad tours offers an intimate, personalized experience.
Windmill Tour Explores Sustainable Energy
Get an up close and personal look at the inner workings of sustainable energy at Palm Springs famed windmill farm tour, with Palm Springs Windmill Tours. The tour takes guests “behind the fence” to a working windmill farm, then explores other sustainable energy production facilities nearby. Palm Springs Windmill Tours is also the only windmill farm tour endorsed by the Desert Wind Energy Association.
Updated: June 10, 2016