Travel | January 9, 2020 9:43 am

A Brief List of All the Sexy New Things to See and Do in Palm Springs in 2020

From the return of Modernism Week to a host of hotel and restaurant openings, here's what to know

arrive hotel palm springs
The ARRIVE is just one of the new Palm Springs hotels that's caught our eye in recent months

It’s highly likely that you may be venturing to Palm Springs this winter, whether for Modernism Week (Feb. 13-23), the return of Art Palm Springs (Feb. 9-April 21 at the Palm Springs Convention Center) or just for some soul-quenching R&R. Accordingly, we’d like to inform you that the area saw a tremendous amount of growth in 2019, which means there are few new things to know before you go. Below is a list of the new hotels and restaurants we’ve got our eye on, as well as some activities to keep your heart racing. 

The rooftop pool at The Rowan (The Rowan)
The Rowan

Lodging for Two

While Palm Springs is flush with charming mid-century modern homes for rent, that can be a bit much when it is just the two of you. Hotels are more romantic and they come with room service and fresh linens. ARRIVE (pictured at top) has a ’60s desert-vibe that’ll give the Ace a run for its money. The rooms are nicer, sporting Egyptian cotton sheets, rain showers and Malin+Goetz products, the pool scene is attractive but mellow, and the food is served by Wexler’s Deli. Elsewhere, The Rowan is a stunning new Kimpton hotel smack in the middle of town with a rooftop pool offering amazing views of the San Jacinto Mountains. In fact, you should book a room facing that mountain range, as it turns a brilliant purple at sunset. You can also have massages booked to your room here. And don’t sleep on the equally hip, understated Dive Hotel, which we reviewed last month.

The Roca (The Roca / Airbnb)
The Roca / Airbnb

Group Lodging

Palm Springs isn’t just a great couples destination — it also begs to be enjoyed by groups of friends. In that case, check out The Benedict in Palm Springs or The Roca in La Quinta, two lovely homes for rent. The Benedict is a swanky mid-century house with a sun-soaked pool, while the Roca is a peaceful hacienda. Both house six guests in three bedrooms, and they are near some excellent hiking (see below). They’re also both owned by Phillip Reker, who used to run The Roadery, a badass motorcycle touring company that would curate trips with good coffee and vittles. He sold it years ago, and these properties are one of his new projects. He is kindly offering InsideHook readers a 10% discount, so when you book the property, message the owner that we sent you. 

The waterfall at Tahquitz Canyon (Tahquitz Canyon)
Tahquitz Canyon

Getting Out There

As mentioned, Reker is a moto enthusiast. The desert is a great place to try your hand at this sport, and Eagle Rider — a rental outfit that bought The Roadery — offers a wide range of bikes as well as tours and lessons, which include jaunts through the Dr. Seussian landscapes of Joshua Tree. If your mojo is less moto and more heel-and-toe, the Tahquitz Canyon provides a stunning two-mile loop with a sweet smelling waterfall. Murray Canyon to Seven Falls is another waterfall hike that’s harder than Tahquitz because of its elevation gain; it’s 3.7 miles out and back.

The Pink Cabana at The Sands Hotel (The Sands Hotel)
The Sands Hotel

Nom nom nom

Palm Springs has grown into a dining destination in the past few years, and there are several new restaurants to consider, two of which are at the hotels we mentioned. Nothing beats a hoppy IPA or crisp kölsch after being outside all day, and the Draughtsman at the ARRIVE is a solid gastropub with oat sodas alongside pub fare made from scratch. Meanwhile, 4 Saints at The Rowan provides your fine-dining night, with great views of the surrounding mountains. Elsewhere, Chad Gardner (533 Viet Fusion) recently opened Royal China Fusion, a stylish American-style Chinese restaurant with dim sum, all of which is made in-house, and Blackbook is another bar with a mean Nashville fried chicken and nachos. If you’re in La Quinta, you’ll want to hit Chula for farm-to-table Mexican, and The Pink Cabana at the Sands Hotel is a stunning Mediterreanan-style restaurant from the chef behind SO.PA.