My yearly tradition is to visit my dear uncles in the desert town of Palm Springs. This year was no exception, except that I also had a VIP ticket to weekend 1 of Coachella, aka “walk-a-chella” (flats are a MUST), or the state fair on steroids for hipsters. It broke records with 80,000-85,000 visitors per day for weekend 1! I don’t know what I was thinking… well, I was curious. The strangest thing about the festival is that there is so much going on at one time – kinda like a Twitter party – so much so that you could easily avoid the music. With 2 VIP areas, the Wonder Wheel, numerous food trucks, several beer gardens, 8 stages, multiple food stands, a makeover hut, a cell phone charging station, a farmers’ market, yoga, and so much more, it was easy to get distracted. But hey, it’s mainly hipsters in Aztec feathers in their 20s. They say “don’t knock it till you tried it.” Well I’ve tried it. NEXT!
The ferris wheel at Coachella
Another scene from Coachella
While in Palm Springs, I managed to hit the following hot spots, which I highly recommend:
Trina Turk’s newly expanded headquarters boutique. I especially loved the swimwear room with caftans. So chic, colorful, and fun. And now with Mr. Turk, you and your man can match! This season I bought the aqua Neptina dress for my own collection.
Next door is Wil Stiles, which stocks many European and foreign designers that you’ve never heard of but wish you had. There are many styles to choose from, all funky and affordable. I snatched up this crazy coat by Canadian designer Samuel Dong, which I needed to keep warm at Coachella. I was hoping to be one of the fabulous flock, but I didn’t see many women rocking their own signature look. Sigh.
Just Fabulous is the type of store I would have spent hours in as a child. They have it all: style, design, music, coffee table books, retro gifts, vintage Hollywood slanted products, and the funniest greeting card collection I have seen in a long time.
The Museum of Palm Springs currently has a wonderful pool art show up called “Backyard Oasis.” The David Hockney polaroids are especially amazing. Swim over to this show ASAP!
I can’t ever get enough water, so I hit The Spring for the second time. My visit was just as lovely. I had a mind body massage and a day pass, which allowed usage of three mineral pools: two hot and one swimmable. Such a relaxing afternoon in a beautiful setting.
From the "Backyard Oasis" show at the Museum of Palm Springs
For more water action, I got a WATSU at Two Bunch Palms Resort and Spa. They too have mineral pools: two under palm trees, one of them hot and the other hotter. My WATSU pool was private, small, and covered so that I could avoid the sun rays – a bonus in my book. My practitioner had studied at the famous Harbin, and he was especially gifted. The actual hotel has new ownership, which I hope is a good thing. It’s a little worn around the edges and in need of a REHAB.
I stayed two nights at the fabulous Viceroy Hotel designed by my favorite Kelly Wearsler (she is chic personified). I’ve always wanted to stay overnight at this gem of a hotel, and it was so worth it! It was a truly intimate and luxurious experience. I had a bungalow – all white with black and yellow accents done in an art deco but modern way. The staff was super accommodating, even sourcing gluten free bread for me in the middle of the night. Don Devine is an excellent manager. One of my favorite moments of the trip was hanging out by the pool Wednesday night listening to their resident singer Michael Keeth (youtube.com/michaelkeeth) perform mellow song after mellow song. It was my own private Coachella!
The Pool at The Viceroy
I ate at Birba, the new outdoor eatery from Cheeky’s Alcazar peeps. Really nice setting and excellent food. Decent scene too!
My room at the Viceroy