If you have worked with our shop to produce any of your corporate meetings or events you will be very aware that we have a thing for Kimpton Hotels. Hip, clean, modern, great locales, and some of the best meeting incentives offered. Recently, I got to meet with Ben Broyles, Sales Manager, and Christine Delgado, Director of Sales & Marketing at Kimpton’s The Rowan Palm Springs. Recently listed on Conde Nast’s 2018 list of Best New Hotels in the US, The Rowan is a main focus of the continual redevelopment and modern, open, pedestrian friendly downtown revitalization of Palm Springs. It’s a big part of the continual increasing interest in corporate meetings and events wanting to be in Palm Springs specifically!
The Rowan is modern in a “I know it’s 2018 but this is mid-century design” manner. Built west of Palm Canyon Drive, the hotel jets up against the San Jacinto Mountains and offers breathtaking mountain views to one side, and desert-scape to the other. 153 guestrooms & suites, two chef-driven restaurants, and a rooftop pool, deck, and patio bar.
Whether you are enjoying a personal stay or attending a company meeting at The Rowan, Ben was kind enough to offer five “localized” activities to enhance your stay. Originally posted on LinkedIn, here’s his advice. Enjoy:
If you ask people who don’t live here the first thing that comes to mind when they think of Palm Springs, you might hear words like “heat,” “retirement,” or “golf.” All are true. But the tide is turning thanks not only to a certain world’s-most-popular music festival, but also the retro allure of mid-century modernism and newer hotels branded toward boomers’ kids and grandmillenials. They come to town for the growing trend of EDM pool parties, vacation rentals for bachelor/ette weekends, and brunch. All the while, the traditional tourists are still here to spa, hit the links, get some art & culture on, and also brunch.
But what do us locals do when we want to get out of the house? We’re a resort town, but even if you live in Aspen you’re not trying to go skiing every weekend (are you?).
[DISCLAIMER: I’ve lived here going on four years now so in a city of only 47,000 people, proportionately I’d consider myself a local at this point. So, no poll was taken. These are some activities I recommend, and since I’ve observed I’m not the only one doing them I figure I might be on the right track.] In no certain order:
Seems obvious once you’re a resident, but many don’t know that the Coachella Valley has probably the best hiking in Southern California. Some trails even lead to waterfalls and learnings of America’s indigenous cultures like at Indian and Tahquitz Canyons. Leave the desert floor and take the ten minute Palm Springs Aerial Tramway ride up to fifty-four miles of hiking in a high-altitude pine forest.
My favorite is the eleven mile tram-to-summit hike which usually takes me about six hours round trip, so pack a lunch for the top and enjoy expansive views of the Inland Empire from 10,834 feet. It’s kind of hard but you’ll feel like such a badass when you’re done and your legs are like al dente spaghetti. Honorable mention goes to Mecca Hills Ladder Canyon which is a little further out in the east side of the valley, but climbing the rickety ladders and squeezing through tight crevices like when James Franco cut off his arm are totally worth it. Oh, and don’t do these in the summer.
Let’s see…how to describe Robolights…
File it under things that make you delightfully say, “What the – ?” It’s like Santa’s workshop meets Robot Chicken meets the Transformers meets the COEXIST bumper sticker meets your local landfill. With lights. Lots of them. Artist Kenny Irwin began the display at his four-acre estate in 1986 and still adds to it all year until finally he opens every Thanksgiving through New Year’s with elaborate holiday weirdness.
Bring a $5 donation, give yourself about an hour and a half to get through the whole thing, and prepare your mind for some ho-ho-holy crap. I recommend a little hot cocoa with peppermint schnapps for this jolly contact acid trip.
Here? Yep. Every June and July, college baseball players on summer break who need to hone their skills join the Palm Springs Power and compete against five other Southern California teams. It’s hot as Hades out there at night but that’s okay because the home team stands have misters overhead to help keep cool.
(The visitors side doesn’t because those bums don’t deserve it.) Watching the Power boys win their eighth championship in ten years is certainly worth the sweat, but so are the dollar beer nights and the boosters making little kids chase the stuffed ram mascot around the field on tricycles at the seventh inning stretch. I don’t know how he or she does it. It’s good ol’ fashioned and inexpensive family fun less than five minutes from downtown.
Pappy & Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace
My happy place. I almost don’t even want to talk about this because I don’t want it to be overrun and ruined. But no one will probably read this anyway so here goes. Pappy & Harriet’s is the type of bar in the middle of nowhere that the first time you walk in you feel like you’re going to get jumped by the bikers from Pee Wee’s Big Adventure. Instead you find super friendly bartenders, the best house made barbecue around, and live music. I’m talking legit live music most nights and many times it’s artists you’ve heard of.
If you get to catch one of your favorite indie rock, alt-country, punk, rockabilly, Americana, or folk bands at this venue then good on ya. Add the fact that it’s in Pioneertown, an old west movie set with a functioning motel and a camping area next to the bar. The terrain in daylight looks like Wile E. Coyote is going to run by with an anvil any minute, and the amount of stars out at night brings a tear. You know what? Forget I even mentioned this place. Move on. This never happened.
Thursday night, the weekend is almost here and you need to get out but not go crazy to the point you wake up Friday morning in your office clothes from yesterday. Maybe just for some fresh air and a bite. You’re going to VillageFest. It’s a weekly street fair on the main vein of downtown Palm Springs, and it’s so laid back you won’t even need your Xanax. Fresh produce, baked goodies, crafts made by local artisans, busker music, a rabbi, timeshare salespeople, and fair food.
It’s the type of event where you would expect gourmet food trucks but they aren’t allowed in PS for some reason. Regardless, you’ll find a melting pot of folk enjoying the lights and smells of kettle corn wafting, as you promenade with your S.O. hand in hand. Straight, gay, or pescatarian – it’s all good in Palm Springs.
So there you have it! Five ways to be local while staying at The Rowan Palm Springs. Contact John/Perry Events, quickly becoming Palm Springs’ top meeting planners, and allow us to plan and manage your meeting or event!