Keeping it Surreal: Palm Springs, California

This article first appeared in SUITCASE Volume 16: The Spirit Issue.

In the Twenties, Hollywood introduced the 'two-hour rule', which meant that actors under contract had to remain within two hours' reach of the studio at all times. And so Palm Springs, located 110 miles east and roughly 90 minutes' drive from Los Angeles, was put on the map as a getaway for the likes of Ava Gardner, Marilyn Monroe and Humphrey Bogart.

With a wealth of boutique hotels and 350 days of sunshine each year, this desert town continues to serve the Hollywood scene today. Come during the International Film Festival or Coachella for some serious celebrity-watching; come at any other time and you're just as likely to find a granny playing bingo at The Ace Hotel as a young Hollywood blonde.

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hotel

Parker

Palm Springs, United States

A multicoloured delight in the middle of the desert, the Parker has all the amenities of a serene oasis combined with many an opportunity for eating and drinking. There’s a remarkable variety of sporting activities around here, including tennis on the clay courts overlooking the surrounding mountain ranges and hikes in Joshua Tree. There’s also golfing in Coachella Valley, Cruisers for cycling by mid-century-modern homes and on-site yogis to assist your spiritual awakening. Lunchtime croquet accompanied by bellinis and lobster rolls are easily arranged. Any combination of health and indulgence is possible here – go for an all-out Cali breakfast with broiled grapefruit at Norma’s terrace restaurant, or opt for a few thick slices of French toast as you plan your day around resting by the pool.

Address

4200 East Palm Canyon Drive California 92264 USA

hotel

Sparrows Lodge

Palm Springs, United States

This rustic love nest is best suited to those who are low maintenance and fancy being exposed to a little farm living. Settle in by the campfire (glass of sangria in hand) after a communal supper in the garden.

Address

1330 E Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs, CA 92264, US

hotel

Parker Palm Springs

Deserts and pools make good company. At Parker Palm Springs, palm trees fan the sky and huddle over the pool’s parameter. When the desert sun gets too intense, take shade under the lemon- and white-striped umbrellas and hit up the vintage-feels lemonade stand. Coordinating your beverage to your bather feels so right here.

Address

4200 E Palm Canyon Dr Palm Springs CA 92264 United States