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Greater Palm Springs Sip, Savor, Spa and Savor Summertime Getaways

Greater Palm Springs Sip, Savor, Spa and Savor Summertime Getaways
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To kick-off the summer season, Greater Palm Springs Restaurant Week, presented by Agua Caliente Casinos, is offering locals and visitors 10-days of special culinary opportunities.

Leap of Luck by artist Trek Kelly. Photo by Jill Weinlein

Leap of Luck by artist Trek Kelly. Photo by Jill Weinlein

This annual Restaurant Week event begins on May 31 – June 9, 2024, offering residents and tourists curated value prix-fixe lunch and dinner menus starting at $15, plus exclusive special offers only available during Restaurant Week.

After Restaurant Week, Greater Palm Springs celebrates the Summer Eats Pass starting on June 10 with dining offers available all summer long.

Here is my Greater Palm Springs Summer Getaway Guide for where to stay, dine, drink, and enjoy some spa and swimming time:

Agua Caliente Rancho Mirage. Photo Jill Weinlein

Agua Caliente Rancho Mirage. Photo Jill Weinlein

AQUA CALIENTE RESORT & CASINO

Stay overnight at the luxurious four-star Agua Caliente Resort in Rancho Mirage. This high-rise resort offers a smoke-free casino, variety of dining venues, spacious guest rooms, spa, enormous swimming pool, and large performance theater for a Las Vegas vibe. Throughout this resort natural Coachella Valley desert elements are featured in design, colors, and ambiance.

waterscape'. Photo Jill Weinlein

waterscape’. Photo Jill Weinlein

I enjoyed a delicious three-course Greater Palm Springs Restaurant Week dinner at Waterscafe’ for only $39. The menu includes either a minestrone soup or salad, entrée and fabulous dessert.

Three of the resort’s restaurants are participating in dineGPS Restaurant Week. Besides Waterscafe’, other dining opportunities guests will enjoy include 360 Sports for a three-course lunch for $35, and an elegant dinner at The Steakhouse for $59.

Agua Caliente Rancho Mirage. Photo Jill Weinlein

Agua Caliente Rancho Mirage. Photo Jill Weinlein

Night Swim and Show

Since the Greater Palm Springs area has over 40,000+ swimming pools, a night swim before dinner while the sun is setting is one of my favorite evening activities. Agua Caliente’s outdoor pool area encompasses more than 50,000 square feet with an expansive free-form swimming pool and arrowhead designed jetted spa.

Agua Caliente Rancho Mirage. Photo Jill Weinlein

Agua Caliente Rancho Mirage. Photo Jill Weinlein

The outdoor playground offers eight well-appointed cabanas. Each with flat-screen TVs, misters and ceiling fans to keep you cool and a mini-refrigerator for chilled beverages.

After dinner guests’ heading over to The Show at Agua Caliente Rancho Mirage will see live entertainment, celebrity comedy shows and top musical artists.

Java Caliente. Photo Jill Weinlein

Java Caliente. Photo Jill Weinlein

Start the next morning with a coffee at Java Caliente on the ground floor of the hotel. They also blend healthy smoothies and have the best chocolate chip everything (nuts and coconut) cookies in the valley.

Java Caliente. Photo Jill Weinlein

Java Caliente. Photo Jill Weinlein

LIVE HOUSE PALM SPRINGS

Life House Palm Springs is a reimagined 1960s mid-century celebrity hideaway with new modern touches. Each Life House Hotel has a tale to tell starting with a character who has an interesting historical story about the destination.

Life House Palm Springs. Photo Jill Weinlein

Life House Palm Springs. Photo Jill Weinlein

Stepping inside Minerva’s Restaurant, I learned this hotel’s story honors Minerva Hamilton Hoyt, a desert lover and activist. She artfully took the inexpressible beauty of the Coachella Valley on a roadshow to make others aware of its importance in California. Thoughtful art is infused into the spaces designed for travelers to appreciate.

Life House Palm Springs Minerva's entrance. Photo Jill Weinlein

Life House Palm Springs Minerva’s entrance. Photo Jill Weinlein

In front of the restaurant is a convertible Alfa Romeo filled with desert succulent plants. This whimsical sight must be one of the most expensive planter boxes in the world.

Minerva's interior dining room. Photo Jill Weinlein

Minerva’s interior dining room. Photo Jill Weinlein

Inside there are cozy booths and cheery tables set for two. Being led outside under towering palm trees below with the majestic Mount Jacinto, I enjoyed one of the most beautiful avocado toasts with a refreshing glass of iced tea.

Dine at Minerva's. Photo Jill Weinlein

Dine at Minerva’s. Photo Jill Weinlein

The restaurant is offering a $25 lunch and dineGPS dinner menu for two people for only $59. This special prix-fixe menu begins with stone-baked focaccia and bruschetta, followed by a charcuterie board and then market fresh branzino or a savory good eggplant parmesan. Add wine pairings for $25 per person.

View from a guest room at Life House Palm Springs. Photo Jill Weinlein

View from a guest room at Life House Palm Springs. Photo Jill Weinlein

Staying at Life House, guests will enjoy the dramatic mountain and palm tree views. There is an inviting pool terrace offering modern cabanas, a pool bar, music, and outdoor playground with lawn games.

Spend a summer day enjoying a cabana and pool. Photo Jill Weinlein

Spend a summer day enjoying a cabana and pool. Photo Jill Weinlein

SPA TIME AT The SPA at Séc-he

One way to take a break from the warm desert sun is to spend the day or afternoon at newer The Spa at Séc-he. Located at Agua Caliente’s Hot Mineral Spring, this award-winning facility is named after the tribe and rooted in tradition, healing and tranquility.

Rest and escape the heat at The Spa at Séc-he. Photo by Jill Weinlein

Rest and escape the heat at The Spa at Séc-he. Photo by Jill Weinlein

Located in the epicenter of Palm Springs, The Spa at Séc-he has a 17,000-square-foot pool deck area with a main pool offering a relaxing waterfall feature, grotto, and lounging chairs around the pool’s tanning deck. There is also a separate zero-edge mineral pool with a calm beach entry.  Spend the day in one of the four luxury cabanas complete with misters, four plush day beds, teak furniture throughout, and order food and beverages from the poolside Pál Bar.

Experience a deeper level of relaxation inside by taking The Spa Séc-he journey. Slip into a plush robe and sandals before entering the acoustic wellness lounge to sit in one of zero-gravity comfortable lounge chairs with a soft blanket. Place headphones over your ears to listen to a variety of guided meditations and sound bath experiences.

Cool off in a cold plunge. Photo Jill Weinlein

Cool off in a cold plunge. Photo Jill Weinlein

Afterwards, relax inside the menthol dry sauna and eucalyptus steam room. Enter into one of the aroma showers and then ease into a cold plunge to activate your senses.

The Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians, call the Hot Mineral Spring below this site – ‘Séc-he’, which translates to “the sound of boiling water” in the Cahuilla language. It’s been a healing tradition for more than 130 years. The 105-degree ancient water emerges from the ground in its purest state for the ultimate healing and relaxation technique. There are 22 private mineral baths. A staff member will lead you to a private bath and have you turn a sand timer over to begin your healing journey.

Agua Caliente Cultural Museum. Photo Jill Weinlein

Agua Caliente Cultural Museum. Photo Jill Weinlein

Another cool spot is next door at the Agua Caliente Cultural Plaza. The Agua Caliente Cultural Museum celebrates five exhibits for the public to learn about the Tribe’s history and home. Discover their migration, culture, traditions, how they have changed and adapted to modern-day life. Each exhibit area is an multi-sensory experience as you stroll along an air conditioned pathway.

Agua Caliente Cultural Museum. Photo Jill Weinlein

Agua Caliente Cultural Museum. Photo Jill Weinlein

DRIFT PALM SPRINGS

If you are familiar with DRIFT San Jose del Cabo, DRIFT Nashville, TN and DRIFT Santa Barbara, CA, then you will love DRIFT Palm Springs.

Cool down at DRIFT Palm Springs. Photo Jill Weinlein

Cool down at DRIFT Palm Springs. Photo Jill Weinlein

Located in the heart of downtown Palm Springs, DRIFT Hotel is a newer relaxing summer getaway. There are guest rooms, and multi-bedroom guest concepts offering resort-style garden and pool views, plus indoor/outdoor restaurant and bar. This DRIFT is a great Airbnb alternative.

DRIFT offers light and bright guest rooms. Photo Jill Weinlein

DRIFT offers light and bright guest rooms. Photo Jill Weinlein

Take one of the complimentary beach cruisers to explore Downtown and Uptown Palm Springs before hanging by the large pool in a comfortable lounge chair or cabana.

Pool time at DRIFT. Photo by Jill Weinlein

Pool time at DRIFT. Photo by Jill Weinlein

The dining concept Maleza at the entrance of this boutique hotel is a soulful Baja-inspired  concept. Maleza is the Spanish word for ‘undergrowth’ or ‘from the earth.’

One of the best guacamole and taco plates in Palm Springs. Photo Jill Weinlein

One of the best guacamole and taco plates in Palm Springs. Photo Jill Weinlein

Esteemed chef Ysaac Ramirez prepares one of the best guacamole and chips in town year-round. During Restaurant Week his famous guacamole with chips and a set of two tacos are $25 per person during lunch. This special menu is available starting on June 2 – June 9, 2024. Be sure to sip one of the craft cocktails with names that include – Tequila, A Love Story.

Tommy Bahama Miramonte Resort & Spa. Photo Jill Weinlein

Tommy Bahama Miramonte Resort & Spa. Photo Jill Weinlein

TOMMY BAHAMA MIRAMONTE RESORT & SPA

Enjoy Island living out in the desert at Indian Wells Tommy Bahama Miramonte Resort & Spa. This reimagined and refreshed resort is excited to participate in Greater Palm Springs Restaurant Week at Grapefruit Basil.

Tommy Bahama Miramonte Resort & Spa. Photo Jill Weinlein

Tommy Bahama Miramonte Resort & Spa. Photo Jill Weinlein

Grapefruit Basil is offering three-course prix fixe dinner for only $35 per person starting on May 31 to June 9, 2024. Diners can inside the newly renovated bright and inviting restaurant or out on the picturesque patio near the sparkling swimming pool. Tables are set amid a grove of olive trees under designer lighting.  The California focus three-course menu includes a choice of grilled chipotle shrimp or chile lime scallops, followed by a sweet and sour beet salad. Diners have an entree choice of pork belly banh mi, an island crab cake melt, or seafood bucatini.

Guest rooms offer a tropical Tommy Bahama design. Photo Jill Weinlein

Guest rooms offer a tropical Tommy Bahama design. Photo Jill Weinlein

Afterwards, go back to one of the 215 guestrooms and reimagined villa suites for a good night’s sleep. The rooms are infused with a custom tropical design and luxurious amenities. Step out onto the private lanai or take a night swim under the stars.

CELEBRITY CHEFS OPEN ALICE B.

Alice B. Photo by Jill Weinlein

Alice B. Photo by Jill Weinlein

Be sure and stop in at Alice B. Restaurant for brunch or dinner one night. Julia Child and James Beard  award-winning chefs Susan Feniger and Mary Sue Milliken opened their first Coachella Valley restaurant inside Living Out, a luxury resort-style LGBTQ+ living community. These ‘Too Hot Tamales’ were inspired by the fascinating life of Alice B. Toklas and her life partner Gertrude Stein. This restaurant is a welcoming space for all to enjoy a vibrant culinary experience among colorful art and design.

Alice B. Photo Jill Weinlein

Alice B. Photo Jill Weinlein

Portraits of Alice and Gertrude anchor the dining room, and the restaurant rotates featured pieces created by local female and LGBTQ+ artists.

The chefs cookbooks are available to purchase. Photo Jill Weinlein

The chefs cookbooks are available to purchase. Photo Jill Weinlein

Surrounded by spectacular desert and mountain views, Feniger and Milliken are in the kitchen when they are in town. They also have SOCALO in Santa Monica, BORDER GRILL at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, BBQ MEXICANA in Las Vegas, PACHA MAMAS in Las Vegas and BORDER GRILL CATERING in So Cal and Las Vegas. Executive Chef Lance Velasquez runs the kitchen smoothly and comes out into the dining room to chat with locals and visitors.

Sit inside the elegant mid-century modern style bar and restaurant to listen to live music on select evenings around a baby grand piano. Select a classic cocktail, glass of wine or spirit-free beverage while taking in the sophisticated and fun vibe.

Alice B. Photo Jill Weinlein

Alice B. Photo Jill Weinlein

During Restaurant Week, the Brunch menu is available for $35 per person. Diners can select the biscuit of the day with butter and seasonal jam, market fresh fruit, yogurt and granola, and a brioche French Toast or a Breakfast burrito.

The $59 Restaurant Week Dinner includes either two Cornmeal Cheddar Drop Biscuits with cardamom honey, or a Kenter Farms Baby Lettuce Salad with fried bread parmigiana Reggiano, or a bowl of Spring Carrot and Ginger Soup. Entrees are a choice of Mendoza Farms Spiced Cauliflower and Eggplant, or Seared Salmon with Kohlrabi remoulade and Arbequina olive almond relish or a Mary’s Seeded Chicken Cutlet with an apple radish slaw.

Finish with Tahini Ice Cream with chocolate sauce and crispy sesame seed clusters or Seasonal Sorbet with a Pistachio Sugar Cookie or Chocolate Cake with Luxardo cherries and whipped crème fraiche.

To learn about other restaurants participating in Greater Palm Springs Restaurant Week click here.


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About The Author

Jill Weinlein

As a travel journalist for 17 years some of my favorite experiences have been climbing The Great Wall in China, swam with Stingrays in Bora-Bora, explored caves in Belize, followed a pod of Orcas in Alaska, swam in the warm waters of Krabi in Thailand, visited Marco Polo's house in Korcula, Croatia and sailing around Richard Branson's Necker Island in the British Virgin Islands. Read my travel reviews to be inspired to see the world.

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