Several months ago I signed up for a photo retreat in Joshua Tree, Roamers Retreat. Since I had to fly into Palm Springs to get there and had never been before, I wanted to make a weekend out of it! I had two of my best friends drive in from LA to meet me there and here are some of the recommendations I wanted to share!
Where To Stay In Palm Springs:
I’m a Hilton Honors member, so we got a great deal and chose to stay at the Double Tree Hilton Golf Resort. It was a beautiful property with a huge pool and of course, golf course. With Covid going on, many facilities were closed such as the restaurants and gym, but the bar was offering to-go drinks so that was a plus! If we could’ve stayed anywhere there’s some super cute hotels in the downtown Palm Springs area such as Arrive, the Parker, or The Saguaro. If you have a group, an Airbnb would be a great option but you have to book pretty far in advance!
Where To Eat In Palm Springs:
This may be the most important section of this blog post. Palm Springs is known for having some amazing food and trendy restaurants. I have celiac, a gluten allergy, so I wanted to make sure everywhere we went had plenty of gluten free options. I did a lot of research, including getting some recs from a friend that is a local there. Our first night of the weekend, Friday, we got dinner at Eight4Nine. They had the cutest patio with neon pink accents. We got a cheeseboard, bottle of wine, and some delicious entrees. On Saturday we attempted to go to brunch at Cheeky’s, known for its famous bacon flights, but the wait was 2 hours long! Instead, we went to Wilma & Frieda’s where we were seated immediately on their lovely rooftop patio! That evening we had a dinner reservation at Azucar, which had the cutest rooftop patio and some amazing views and spicy melon margs. We then popped over down the street to ChiChi for a drink by the pool. On Sunday morning we had brunch at Lulu, which had an amazing deal of a 3 course meal for $20 a person, and then we had an afternoon treat of pineapple dole whip at Lappert’s. Sunday evening I had dinner at Birba and had probably the best gluten free pizza I’ve ever had! On my last day, Monday, I had an amazing French breakfast at Farm. The omelettes are to die for!
What To Do In Palm Springs:
Palm Springs is definitely known as a place to relax more so than go out. Pre-Covid, spa days were big and many people travel there to golf or hang by the pool. Even though our trip was in October, it was still over 110 degrees. We decided not to do any hikes so that we wouldn’t get heat stroke, but there are some amazing ones during cooler times of the year! We had a pool day Saturday at our hotel, and roamed the streets downtown shopping on Sunday. Be sure to check out Peepa’s, a cute retro gift shop. Another fun activity is driving around looking at all the mid century modern homes! We went to the Indian Canyons Neighborhood and found the cutest house to snap some photos of! Just be sure to be respectful of their homes and not go on their property, etc.
Another fun activity to do is taking photos by the famous wind turbines right outside of downtown Palm Springs. We drove around for a while to try to figure out where to park for photos by the windmills, and finally found some good spots. You can type in “Wall Rd.” to your GPS as one option or “W Garnet Ave”.
If your trip allows for it, definitely try to do a day trip or an extra night in Joshua Tree National Park. I was expecting Joshua Tree to just be a flat desert with cacti, but boy was I wrong. It was unlike anything I’ve ever seen. Expect to see giant boulders just scattered everywhere making jaw-dropping formations, mountains towering over 5,000 ft in elevation, and joshua trees for miles. Check out the elopement styled shoots I did in Joshua tree on my other blog post.