By Elisabeth Abrahamson | Contributor
JAN-FEB 2022 ISSUE
The greater Palm Springs area is a beautiful destination year-round, but there’s something magical about visiting in winter. Whether you’re looking to rest and refresh or get out and be active (hello, new year, new you!), Palm Springs has something for everyone.
FLEUR NOIRE HOTEL
Photos credit courtesy of Fleur Noire Hotel
Former “Alice in Wonderland meets Brigitte Bardot” is how founder Corey St. John describes the brand-new Fleur Noire Hôtel. He enlisted his longtime friend, designer Chris Pardo, to help guide the vision for the property. “We wanted to create more than just a place to rest your head,” says Corey. “We wanted to create an immersive experience.” Corey and Chris worked together to bring new and vibrant life to the old hotel, or “beige box” as they called it. With 21 rooms, the intimate property is an excellent choice for recharging after in the new year. Fleur’s Champagne bar, La Boisson, opens this month with dozens of rosé varieties, Champagne, wines, beer, and signature cocktails.
1555 N. Indian Canyon Drive, Palm Springs
MIRAMONTE INDIAN WELLS
Photos credit courtesy of Miramonte Indian Wells
Miramonte Indian Wells, which recently underwent a $9 million renovation, is an excellent choice for a desert stay. With its Mediterranean style, the resort offers 215 guest rooms and villas surrounded by olive trees, citrus groves, and flower gardens. Guests can take a dip in one of three pools, as well as play bocce ball, experience a treatment at the spa, and lounge around the fire pits at night with a hot cup of cocoa (or a glass of wine!).
45000 Indian Wells Lane, Indian Wells
Photos credit courtesy of Rancho Relaxo
Desert travelers looking for a curated gift selection should pop into new boutique Rancho Relaxo in Rancho Mirage. “Rancho Relaxo is a celebration of beautiful items created by very talented artists, artisans, and craftspeople,” shop owner Stella Adena says. After having two kids and leaving a career in investment banking, Stella wanted a change. Growing up in Ohio, she fantasized about a life in California because she felt at home in the desert. “The desert is my home and I wanted to share that with the local community and amazing flow of travelers who pass through.” There’s something for everyone here: clothing for men and women, home decor, accessories, gift items, and so much more. “Rancho Relaxo is living your best life,” she says. And that’s exactly how you’ll feel in her boutique.
69930 Highway 111, Suite 116, Rancho Mirage
Photos credit courtesy of Mojave Flea
In 2018, James Anthony Morelos opened Mojave Flea as a nomadic, pop-up marketplace in Palm Springs. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, he decided to turn the pop-up into a brick-and-mortar store that would be open daily to support all the local makers’ goods. “We created a business model where the majority of the revenue goes directly to the makers and merchants,” James says. “It’s had a positive impact on their small businesses.” The Palm Springs location was such a success that James was able to open a second shop in Yucca Valley. The two shops carry handmade and sustainable brands from the low and high deserts. Shoppers will find everything from apothecary goods to home and apparel to a wine and beer shop (Palm Springs location only).
383 N. Indian Canyon Drive, Palm Springs & 55727 Twentynine Palms Highway, Yucca Valley
Photos credit courtesy of Bar Cecil
Step inside Bar Cecil and you might feel like you’re at a cafe in Europe. The bistro/bar has a similar feel to a “jewel box,” general manager Nate VanDeventer says. “English wallpaper, chartreuse velvet booths, and cerulean blue barstools,” are standout design touches that make Bar Cecil feel so luxe. And while we’re crushing on the bistro’s design, let’s not forget about the showstopping menus. If you’re a caviar fan, order it served with crème fraiche and a vodka shot. Other food options include tomahawk steak served with a house-made steak sauce, bucatini cacio e pepe, pan-seared halibut, and a cheeseburger. Don’t forget to wash it all down with a specialty cocktail like Herman’s Nectar, a bourbon and Aperol sipper with watermelon and fresh lemon.
1555 S. Palm Canyon Drive, Suite H-104, Palm Springs
Photos credit courtesy of Boozehounds
New on the block, Boozehounds is a must-eat restaurant. The dining spot offers pet-friendly dining — complete with a menu for dogs — innovative bites, and plenty of photo opps for IG-friendly diners. Go for dinner and start with a house-made cocktail paired with the oven-roasted, sweet chile crisp Brussels sprouts and burrata doused in a mushroom wasabi brood, roasted okra, basil, and topped with pepitas, chive oil, and served with focaccia. You can’t go wrong with the crudo (bluefin tuna with marcona almonds and fresh mint!), but if you’re looking for something heartier, go for the miso Chilean fish and chips or the double cheeseburger with fries. The menu for furry friends includes mains such as a chicken bowl, turkey jerky, and more.
2080 N. Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs
LONG CANYON TRAILHEAD
Visitors looking to get fresh air and reconnect with nature can check out the Long Canyon Trailhead, which debuted last month. The gorgeous, but strenuous, trail takes hikers from the starting point at Long Canyon Road and Hacienda Avenue into Joshua Tree National Park. The 9-mile round-trip hike offers picturesque views of the natural flora and fauna of the park.