A hundred miles east of Los Angeles in the Sonoran Desert, the fashionable city of Palm Springs has over 350 days of sunshine each year. Tucked in the shadow of the San Jacinto Mountains, this palm-strewn desert city first became popular in the fifties and sixties when the Hollywood elite – led by Sinatra, Presley and Monroe – escaped here to relax between movies.
In later years, Palm Springs became well known for its world-class golf courses, Mid-Century architecture and vintage-chic hotels. It attracts a mix of visitors from snowbirds, golfers and a loyal LGBT crowd to the outdoors set who come to hike the desert canyons of the Coachella Valley.
Stylish Hotels in Palm Springs
Palm Springs is one of America's premier places to stay. It offers all kinds of accommodation, from colourful kitsch inns with kidney-shaped pools to iconic hotels like the Movie Colony, with its colourful celebrity history.
There are also plenty of cheap, mid-range, and four- and five-star chain hotels on the streets surrounding Palm Canyon Drive and Indian Canyon Drive, downtown's parallel main streets.
Look for chic boutique hotels in both downtown and the Uptown Design district, as well as in the sprawling desert resorts with championship golf courses and spas just outside Palm Springs.
Palm Springs’ Highlights
Visit in January for the Palm Springs International Film Festival, one of the largest and most flamboyant affairs in the US. Or visit Palm Springs in April when the world's fashion elite head to the star-studded Coachella Festival, a week of music and arts in the desert.
But there's plenty in the city to attract all year round. If you’d like a culture fix, head to the Palm Springs Art Museum. Founded in 1933, it features works by Degas, Picasso and Henry Moore, as well as Native American and Mesoamerican art collections.
For Mid-Century architecture visit the Architecture and Design Center in downtown, take a peek into Elvis' fabulous Honeymoon Hideaway or browse the fashionable Uptown Design District for style inspiration.
Family Attractions in Palm Springs
Palm Springs is a great destination if you’re travelling as a family and many resorts offer numerous pools, kids' clubs and play areas. Six miles from downtown is the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway, a rotating cable car which climbs from the heat of the desert to the peak of the San Jacinto Mountains, where snow is not uncommon.
Or head 15 miles out of town to the Living Desert Zoo and Gardens near Indian Wells, a desert-themed nature park where kids can visit an African-themed village and a wildlife hospital. And don't miss the World's Biggest Dinosaurs, a rather kitsch concrete dinosaur park, and cool everyone off on the slides and in the pools at Wet 'n' Wild water park.
Expedia offers an extensive variety of accommodation in Palm Springs from budget motels, Mid-Century hotels to luxury golf and spa resorts. Use Expedia's search tools to find the best deals for your next Palm Springs getaway.