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A Hawt Gay Palm Springs Summer

santiago pool

Gay Things To Do in Palm Springs

By Kevin Perry

Sunlight is a powerful force. It invigorates, it illuminates, and it radiates across the summer, welcoming open-air events and gregarious folks across the rainbow spectrum.

There are many reasons why Pride month coincides with the middle of the year. First, it has historical significance, commemorating the Stonewall uprising that liberated so many hearts, minds and attitudes back in ‘69. But Pride is also a seasonal uprising. We yearn for warmth in its many forms: the warmth of inclusion, the warmth of connection and the literal warmth of the environment beckoning us out of the humdrum and into the sublime.

Santiago pool and spa
Santiago Resort pool and spa

Sound familiar? This is Palm Springs, circa summer.

Check out our amenities by checking into one of the legendary gay Palm Springs resorts that pepper our landscape. From the architectural triumph of Triangle Inn to the frisky grounds of Canyon Club to the largest pool of any gay hotel in Palm Springs at Santiago Resort to the understated grandeur of El Mirasol,  there is a clothing optional pool just waiting for you to make a splash.

two men at Triangle Inn pool
Triangle Inn

In fact, our list of gay things to do in Palm Springs includes havens that spilleth over like one of the aforementioned pools. You can gaze at the men lounging near the waterfalls of Vista Grande, discover your homo away from home at The Hacienda, let it all hang out at All Worlds, or celebrate seclusion at Desert Paradise. Be sure to beat the heat in style with your own INNdulge cabana, equipped with comfy seats and cooling overhead fans. Now that’s some shade we don’t mind thrown our way!

The Hacienda at Warm Sands outdoor area
The Hacienda at Warm Sands

Once you’re sufficiently settled and soaked, you’ll need some refreshment for your palate. March to a different drummer and arrive at Bongo Johnny’s. Their bottomless champagne is only $5 and it pairs perfectly with breakfast entrees like Polynesian French Toast or a Fried Chicken Benedict.

Your Summer Hair Do

Now that you’re feeling good, it’s time to look good. Destination: Daddy’s. This barbershop bills itself as the gay version of the salon in Steel Magnolias. Or explore even more stylish options at rival establishment Sunny Dunes Barber Shop. Get your beard did or coif like a kween and shed those pesky winter locks. And while we’re on the topic of shedding, have some fun next door at the Tool Shed. The back patio is optimized for summer with a rugged mountain view.


See a Show

You simply must take in a show at Oscar’s, where the talent is tucked and triumphant. This is definitely a main pick for gay things to do in Palm Springs. The drag queens of Bitchiest Brunch are clawing their way to the top of your bottomless mimosa existence. As gay turns to night, Las Chicas Calientes spice up every Monday and Friday, so they have you covered no matter which end of the week you prefer to party. It’s always vacation time in gay Palm Springs at Oscar’s.

oscars mimosa men
Oscar’s mimosa men

Hang Out on Arenas Road

The epicenter of the summer scene is located squarely on Arenas Road, where camaraderie rules. Whether you cruise the south side of the block where the people at Dick’s mingle with the hipsters of Chill Bar, or if your North Star guides you to the festive happenings at Hunters and Streetbar, you will collab! Each of the aforementioned pairs share parking lot spaces that facilitate spacious outdoor gatherings suited for our hot desert nights.

chill bar
Chill Bar

While on Arenas, recharge with some sinful grub at Blackbook. The chicken sammy is to die for (and we never end our sentences with prepositions, so you know we’re passionate!). Wash it down with some liquid courage and join the chorus of showtune-loving summer crooners at Quadz.

If you’re feeling exotic, let your rainbow flag fly at The Tropicale. Psst! The founder used to be Barbra Streisand’s personal chef. Hello, gorgeous gourmet! Next, get your cocktail on at Toucans Tiki Lounge, populated with drag queens and go-go dancers galore. Is it hot in here, or is it just you?

toucans gay bar

The Beauty of Summertime

The beauty of summertime in Palm Springs is the sprawl of it all. The calendar stretches out before you as if autumn may never descend. Palm Springs embodies this sense of freedom by spreading its hotspots across the map. For instance, venture out-and-proudward for LGBTQ dining options like Jake’s. Their seafood fare and white wine menu are the perfect complement to the sultry atmosphere. And no visit to our hearty hometown would be complete without a nosh at Trio. The iconic orange branding gives you solar vibes year-round so that you can carry the spirit of the season in your homo hearts and full bellies well beyond the length of your stay.

Truly, summer is eternal here in Palm Springs.


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