The scenesters are back in the desertcity
The usual array of private jets glitter on the tarmac of the Palm Springs International Airport the morning I arrive, but one stands out in particular. Looking sharp in its blue and white livery, the 747 emblazoned with the presidential seal and the Stars and Stripes is aaa replica designer handbags unmistakably Air Force One, which has dropped off the President for a bit of golf and a summit.
This is reportedly Barack Obama’s sixth time in Palm Springs since his presidency began and there are rumours that the first couple are thinking of buying a place here after they leave the White House. They’ll be in good company. Similarly, Ryan Gosling and Eva Mendes celebrated the actress’s 42nd birthday at the luxurious Frank Sinatra Twin Palms Estate last month, and Louis Vuitton chose Bob Hope’s colossal house (designed by the renowned John Lauter) as the venue to debut their 2016 resort collection.
It’s been a while since Palm Springs saw the kind of action that made it a desert playground for the rich and famous of Hollywood’s golden age. Celebrities have flocked here since the 1930s, but it was during the 1950s and ’60s that the city really came into its own with the arrival of the rat pack and their glamorous entourages.
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Fashion is fickle, however, and after that first round of celebrities decamped for other destinations in this world or the next the city lost much of its lustre and devolved into a sleepy haven for retirees and a quiet spot for snowbirds to hibernate during the winter. Palm Springs is on the cusp of a major revitalization.
Events like Coachella and hip properties such as the Ace Hotel bring the indie music set, while the Palm Springs International Film Festival, now one of the most influential festivals of its kind, is attracting a whole new generation of celebrities.
I’m here to find out what’s driving the renaissance of Palm Springs.
Walking along Palm Canyon Drive, the city’s main Perfect Quality Louis Vuitton Replica drag, I find plenty of mist replica louis vuitton handbags cooled restaurant patios, contemporary galleries and bikini shops, but an entire city block is now a tangle of cranes and heavy machinery. Three new hotels along with dozens of shops and restaurants are being built here as part of a massive downtown revitalization project.
My base is the newly transformed Avalon Hotel, which, up until a couple of years ago www.dolabuy.su , was the Viceroy best replica handbags , but it has a history dating back to the 1930s when it opened as the Estrella Inn. Today, designer Kelly Wearstler has given the bungalows a Hollywood Regency touch with bright, persimmon coloured doors that peek out from behind box hedges. Mature orange and lemon trees release their perfume into the heat and towering royal palms crown the sky.
Two year renovation transformed private estate into L’Horizon Resort.
It’s calm and quiet outside my bungalow, but over at the adult pool (one of three on the property) lithe women in expensive sunglasses drape themselves over an inflatable swan and drift around the deep end while buff replica louis vuitton bags blond surfer types snack on avocado toast and octopus ceviche. The only thing vintage about the scene is the music: Disco Inferno, a song older than anyone here, is playing from the speakers.
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Later that night I manage to snag a bar stool at Mr. Lyons Steakhouse, a 70 year old English style grill that has recently undergone a major update. Gone are the suits of armour and fictitious coats of arms high quality replica handbags china and in their place are sleek, green 1:1 replica handbags velvet banquettes, an art deco bar and dramatic lighting. There’s still prime rib, but now it’s a 10 hour slow roasted version (with horseradish and au jus available, too, for the regulars). I order blue crab and kale stuffed mushrooms, hamachi crudo with yuzu, and the ribeye. The place is packed and everyone seems to know one another. I get drawn into cheap louis vuitton bags from china a conversation and end up sharing onion rings with Lisa and her husband, Scott, Texas transplants to California, who just bought a house in the area. “We’ve been coming [to Palm Springs] for years,” Lisa tells me. “It’s close and convenient but used to be pretty sleepy. In the past couple of years it’s really become more fun, though. replica louis vuitton You’ve got great shopping here and the weather’s always sunny and now there are places like this.”
Mr. Lyons Steakhouse mixes old and new in both decor and menu.
Mr. Lyons is one of the latest projects from chef Tara Lazar, a Palm Springs local who grew up here and is now one of the young entrepreneurs leading its revitalization. In addition to Mr. Lyons she also runs Cheeky’s, a popular breakfast spot, and the Italian restaurant Birba.
I meet up with her one afternoon for a pisco sour by the pool at Chi Chi, her restaurant in the Avalon Hotel, and ask her why she thinks the city is gaining in popularity again. “The problem in the past was that young people didn’t want to live here,” Lazar says. “It was too far from the ocean and too boring, but then you had the Ace and the Parker [hotels] come along and there was something to come and see. Suddenly you didn’t have to be invited to someone’s house with a pool; you could come to the Discount Replica Louis Vuitton Bags hotels and there would be somewhere cool to stay.”
All across town 1:1 replica handbags , in fact, once staid, humdrum hotels are reinventing themselves. Names like Merv Griffin’s Resort, HoJos and Holiday Inn are disappearing. It started back in 2004 with the Parker, formerly Merv Griffin’s Resort and Givenchy Spa, which was soon followed by the Ace Hotel Swim Club, a 173 room hotel in a revamped Howard Johnson. Now places like the Saguaro, a neon scenester’s paradise, are in what used to be a Holiday Inn. Sparrows Lodge is a lovingly restored tribute to its 1950s original incarnation Castle’s Red Barn. Later this year the completion of a $15 million renovation will see an old Travelodge, then the Curve hotel, reopen as the boutique V Palm Springs.
Birba restaurant is part of Palm Springs’ bustling dining scene.
No restoration has been more dramatic than that of L’Horizon Resort and Spa, though. Originally built in 1952 as a private family retreat fake designer bags by architect William F. Cody, the lavish, 1.2 hectare property featured a residence and 20 low slung bungalows that served as guest houses which over the years have hosted everyone from Marilyn Monroe to Ronald and Nancy Reagan.
A two year, $5 million renovation has turned the resort into an impeccably designed, 25 room hotel. SO PA, L’Horizon’s dramatic replica louis vuitton bags from china al fresco restaurant, is Palm Springs’ hottest reservation.
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Redesigns of existing hotels aren’t the only thing animating the hospitality scene these days. Last month, Arrive Hotel opened: the first new build hotel in the city in nearly 20 years. When I arrive, it is still in a soft opening phase and a small cluster of tattooed men and women are testing out the bean bag chairs by the pool, while two young kids play a game of paddle tennis on the hotel’s marble ping pong table.
Arrive Hotel was started by Ezra Callahan, one of Facebook’s earliest employees. The company could have opened its first property anywhere in the world, but chose Palm Springs: “We saw that this new generation of traveller was discovering Palm Springs,” Kurt Englund, the hotel’s managing partner says. “Our market is more for the millennial, social traveller, of which there are millions in California alone. Plus, [thanks to] good flights from New York and all around the eastern seaboard, we felt this was the right spot.”.