48 Hours in Palm Springs: The Ultimate Shopping Spree!
By Barbara Beckley
All you need is two days -- to treasure hunt for yourself, friends and family; dine in good taste, sleep in style, and Insta-pose at the hippest backdrops.
Designer boutiques, the best retro shops on the planet and unique gift shops combine with stylish bars and restaurants and celebrity-centric accommodations to make Palm Springs your best shopping experience ever!
Where to begin? The Uptown Design District
North Palm Canyon Drive is a-buzz with unique and trendy finds. Start with fashion designer Trina Turk’s flagship Trina Turk/Mr. Turk boutique filled with the newest collection of her bright, bold California-chic clothing and swimwear for women and men.
A few doors down Iconic Atomic is your one-stop-shop for vintage everything – clothing, accessories, ceramics, furnishings – from the ‘50s, ‘60s and ‘70s. The Frippery, across the street, specializes in retro wear for men and women –think Jackie O-style sheaths and Dinah Shore-like full skirts. Nearby Gallery 24 Jewelry (by appointment but totally worth it) is a must for accessorizing with Parisian haute couture vintage and contemporary jewelry -- Coco Chanel, Dior, Yves Saint Laurent, Isabel Canovas and cheaper but equally high style pieces. And don’t miss the unique designs of Candice Held, at her one-and-only Palm Springs boutique. Her dreamy resort clothing is made from imported fabrics and silk scarves, imprinted with her original designs.
Time out for lunch – perhaps at new Roly China Fusion for stylish dim sum and beyond.
Then it’s back to business. The Shag Store is nearby, where you’ll find artist Josh Agle’s clever and oh-so-popular take on mid-century life in paintings, prints and lithographs and an ever-growing array of Shag-themed gift items from handbags and coasters to pillows, note cards and record players. Yes! Record players are back.
Across the street, the flagship Destination PSP store is your go-to for custom-designed chic and unique Palm Springs-themed gifts – tissue boxes in the shape of mid-century modern homes, retro lunch boxes -- bar accessories, T- and golf shirts, Esther Williams-style swim suites and men’s swim trunks. If you like fine art – check out the Jorge Mendez Gallery (/) specializing in stunning and thought-provoking contemporary works by emerging artists.
Down the street, Just Fabulous (/) has an amazing collection of gifts, décor and books. You won’t know what to buy first – Ruth Bader Ginsburg bobble heads, beautiful photo books on Paris, designers; kids’ books including the Little Golden Books; giant pink flamingo pool floats, Jeff Koons-inspired balloon dogs, cards that make you LOL, mid-century inspired home accessories and more.
Then dinner and drinks at the hip Workshop Kitchen + Bar for inventive American eats.
For accommodations, the Arrive Palm Springs is a cool choice in the Uptown Design District.
DAY TWO - DOWNTOWN
Fuel up with a specialty brew from Starbucks Reserve at the corner of Palm Canyon Drive and E. Tahquitz Canyon Way – this is the heart of Palm Springs downtown. Then plunge into stylish contemporary wear, home décor and specialty shops. Adjacent to Starbucks, Johnny Was has Coachella-worthy women’s resort wear, MAC Cosmetics goes without saying, and Free People features cute baby doll-style and rocker Ts, faux fur and super cool max and midi dresses. Neighboring West Elm is a must for hip and humorous mid-century-style contemporary home décor.
Cross the street to St. Tropez – well, you’ll think you’re in St. Tropez at the Benjamin Perdereau boutique featuring resort wear exclusively from the French Riviera. Nearby, you can even the score at the British Invasion, which specializes in menswear, accessories and footwear from the UK. If you’re into records -- to play on your new Shag record player – Vinyl Records and Collectables (/) has a super selection of vintage spins.
Make lunchtime fun time at legendary Tyler’s Burgers (open only for lunch), for juicy burgers and malts eaten outdoors.
Then stroll up Palm Canyon to long-time favorites Oooh La La for stylish resort wear, and adjacent Shoe La La, Baby La La, for irrestible kids wear, and Puppy La La for cuter-than-cute doggie fashions. If you’re hoping for quality “bling” check out Emerson & Farrar Fine Jewelry and Stuart’s Fine Jewelry & Minnetonka Moccasins. (An unexpected combo, we know – but that’s the joy of Palm Springs.)
See’s Candies is across the street in The Plaza District, along with the Music Box & Clock Shoppe, showcasing beautiful figurines and jewelry, and Stewart Galleries, with an eclectic art collection and estate furnishings.
Continue to poolside perfection at Canyon Beachwear – top labels include Tori Praver, Vitamin A and Swim Systems – for bikinis, wraps, one-pieces in sizes from zero to plus. One block over on Indian Canyon it’s designer heaven at Mitchells Palm Springs, where you’ll find Pucci, Gucci, Dior and more vintage and modern women’s’ and men’s’ apparel, sunglasses, shoes and bags.
Cocktail time again!? Walk to the Kimpton Rowan Palm Springs hotel and toast to your shopping savvy over drinks with a view and dinner at the seventh-floor rooftop 4 Saints restaurant serving seasonal Mediterranean-style fare.
Mission accomplished! Load your treasures and your memories into the car and head on home. But wait -- you’ve really only scratched the surface. There are tons more boutiques and shopping neighborhoods to explore – on your next 48-hour shopping spree.