Palm Springs: the place the stars love to live

Palm Springs Travel Blog

 › entry 1 of 2 › view all entries
Palm Springs California USA

There are a few places in the USA that are wildly popular and yet seem just quite bizarre. One of these is Las Vegas that is a large glistening neon light the middle of the desert, and the other is Palm Springs. This city also sits in the desert, around 270 miles from Las Vegas, it is sizzling hot in summer and used to be a major magnate for all the big stars, and many still have homes here. It now seems to be a mixture of retired people with Hollywood connections and gay men and women. The later accounting for, based on which source you read, between 35% and 50% of the permanent population of around 50000.

 

But despite its quirky history, this city does have a great appeal – and is massively popular in the winter months as a warm place to escape to.

Palm Springs California USA
A major pull being that it is just 100 miles from Los Angeles.

 

That fact was a major reason why Palm Springs took off as a vacation resort. It became the playground of choice for Hollywood stars and celebrities as in the days of the studio system, stars contracted to the studios were not contractually allowed to be further than 100 miles away from Los Angeles. The distance that Palm Springs conveniently is away from Los Angeles.

 

It led to the city becoming a star studded place, with every major star through the 1940s into the 1970s either visiting here regularly or owning property here.

Palm Springs California USA
This legacy can also be seen in many of the streets named after stars like Dinah Shore, Kirk Douglas, Bob Hope and even President Gerald Ford (who also has a home here). Everyone from Marilyn Monroe through to Frank Sinatra had homes here. The city though went into decline and recession through into the late 1970s and 1980s as the younger generation of stars and easy air travel led to more diverse choices.

 

The city eventually came back into resurgence when developers started to create and promote the city as a retirement centre, and (inexplicably) it took off with gay men and women. It also became popular for golfing breaks as it has zillions of golf clubs, and also started to attract conventions and events. This tradition is still an important source of visits and boosts to the local economy as events like Miss Teen USA 2006 taking place in the city.

 

The city now looks prosperous, and is immaculately maintained.

Palm Springs California USA
It is incredibly clean and tidy everywhere. The streets are wide with lush green sidewalk and huge palm trees.

 

One thing that adds to the beauty of the city is its unique architecture. As the city boomed through the middle of the last century and its population were affluent and had style, the city is full of middle of the last century buildings and houses. They seem to have ensured that most are intact, and reading in the papers and guides it seems the city ahs strong rules to ensure buildings are not bulldozed down and the look is maintained. This makes for a very different and distinctive look for the city. I hope they keep that. There are no tall buildings and lots of distinctive buildings.

 

The shopping and restaurants, of which there are many, are all centred in one area on Palm Canyon Drive and this area is very lively in the evenings – even “out of season” which is the summer months when temperatures hit up to 110 in the day and only falls about 30 or so degrees at night.

Palm Springs California USA
That is from about 27 to 40 in Celsius. It is clear that there is a “season” that runs from about November and peaks from January to May.

 

The drive from Los Angeles to Palm Springs is not very appealing although the road network is good and being improved. There is not a lot to see until you get close to the city and you encounter the first of the large Indian owned casinos that have sprung up and after miles of nothing this huge skyscraper suddenly appears and looks odd in the middle of nowhere. Then just after that you come across this massive wind farm. It is huge, and people start driving more erratically as they stare at the huge turbines. This part of the area seems to channel wind through a particular area and hence the farm.

Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!
Palm Springs California USA
Palm Springs California USA
Palm Springs California USA
Palm Springs California USA
Palm Springs California USA
Palm Springs California USA
Palm Springs California USA
Palm Springs California USA
Palm Springs California USA
Palm Springs California USA
Palm Springs California USA
Palm Springs California USA
Sponsored Links
Palm Springs
photo by: Sunflower300