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brunch

BRUNCH BESTIES

While breakfast typically is considered the most important meal of the day, we think there’s a strong argument for weekend brunch being even more important!

Whether you’re looking for a tried and true classic, something innovative or maybe just a Mimosa with a side of breakfast, Palm Springs has the perfect brunch spot for you.  Here’s our list of ten bangin’ brunch spots you need to know about!

1501 Gastro Pub

This new addition to the Palm Springs restaurant scene offers delicious comfort food brunch….with a little twist:  Mimosas include 2 free refills.  They also offer their regular menu during brunch, so there is something for everyone!

https://www.1501uptown.com/

Pinocchio in the Desert

The home of the desert’s most popular bottomless mimosa and many other fabulous brunch drinks! Pinocchio’s serves a traditional American comfort food breakfast.  It’s very popular. You should expect a wait.

http://pinocchiops.com

Chi Chi’s at the Avalon Hotel

Beautiful poolside dining, with a terrific brunch menu, including some creative takes on traditional brunch favorites.  Their fresh pressed juices are delicious, and there’s an amazing selection of craft cocktails created specifically for a brunch by the pool.

https://www.avalon-hotel.com/palm-springs/chi-chi

FARM

This wonderful, French inspired breakfast spot used to be one of the best kept secrets in town.  No more.  The secret is out and this place can get crowed on weekends, but it’s completely worth it.  Tucked away in a small wisteria garden in downtown’s historic La Plaza building, they serve delicious food and offer one of the best French Press coffees in Palm Springs!

https://www.farmpalmsprings.com

Norma’s

A great casual outdoor space, in the IG famous Parker Hotel, Norma’s serves Breakfast all day! There’s a special weekend brunch menu Saturdays and Sundays.  Don’t miss out on the craft cocktail menu!

https://www.parkerpalmsprings.com/food-and-drink

Elmers

Breakfast is what they do right! Nothing too fancy, just a good traditional breakfast menu with lots of options. Be sure to order one of their German pancakes as a table appetizer to share! A squeeze of lemon, and you will be so happy!

https://eatatelmers.com/

Escena Lounge and Grill

One of the most beautiful breakfast views in Palm Springs, and definitely a local secret! Located in the Clubhouse of the Escena Golf Course, but open to the public, the Grill offers traditional brunch dishes, bottomless mimosas and champagne and a jaw-dropping panoramic view!  What could be better?

http://escenagolf.com/dine

Wilma & Frieda’s

This is a downtown brunch favorite featuring a menu filled with the owner’s family recipes. Delicious twists on breakfast favorites include short rib benedict and a tasty shrimp and grits with eggs, all made with love!  Enjoy the busy downtown scene below from your balcony view.  And be sure to order one of their fantastic homemade baked goods!

https://wilmafrieda.com/menu/pd/breakfast

Sherman’s Deli

A Palm Springs classic! This is a wonderful “NY-Style” deli with an awesome breakfast served all day long! A few highlights are the potato latkes and the salmon and eggs.  If you’re feeling like something a bit more savory, try the pastrami sandwich – giant and delicious!

https://shermansdeli.com

Grand Central Cafe

A great place for breakfast, located in downtown’s La Plaza. Featuring  healthy, local California farm to table selections and a great coffee bar.  Mimosa flights are a sure way to get the day started right.

https://www.grandcentralpalmsprings.com

 

 

 

 

While breakfast typically is considered the most important meal of the day, we think there’s a strong argument for weekend brunch being even more important! Whether you’re looking for a tried and... Read More »


DESERT X BRINGS OUTDOOR ART BACK TO THE COACHELLA VALLEY

Spanning 40 miles across the Coachella Valley, Desert X opens its 2021 outdoor art exhibition on March 12th continuing through May 16th.  This is the third Desert X and the past two have been stunners!  Featuring large scale installations from a roster of international artists, these art pieces placed in the desert landscape have wowed viewers from across the world.

Free and open to the public, you can access a map with exact locations of installations starting March 12th at desertx.org.  See some of the stunning pieces from past exhibitions here.

Spanning 40 miles across the Coachella Valley, Desert X opens its 2021 outdoor art exhibition on March 12th continuing through May 16th.  This is the third Desert X and the past two... Read More »


Ladder Canyons

DESERT HIKING @ LADDER CANYON

Spring months are a great time to explore the rugged desert landscape surrounding Palm Springs.  One of our favorite hikes, and one of the most unusual in southern California, is Ladder Canyon.  Beautiful scenery and lots of ladders.  You’ll feel like an Amazing Race contestant when you cross the finish line!  And after a day of climbing ladders, nothing’s better than slipping into the bubbling spa under the stars at Santiago!

An hour and fifteen minutes from Palm Springs, Ladder Canyon is at the end of Painted Canyon Road in Mecca CA. The Canyon gets its name from a series of ladders that must be scaled to complete the hike. At regular intervals, the canyon walls step up10 to 20 feet, making upward progress extremely difficult. Fortunately, aluminum extension ladders, installed by a local hiking club, help hikers negotiate the climb. A few of the ladders may be worn and rickety, which only adds to the adrenaline rush of this adventure hike!

At the end of Painted Canyon Rd. you’ll find the dirt parking lot.  This is the beginning of the Canyon.  The hike is a loop and around 0.5 miles from the parking lot you’ll come to the split. An arrow made from a pile of rocks will point you to the left heading you toward a slot canyon. Since it’s a loop, you can also go to the right, cross the Canyon valley, make your way up the hill and then back through the slot canyon.  Important Note – if you go to the left you’ll be climbing up the ladders.  Go to the right, and you’ll be climbing down the ladders.

Enjoy! The entire loop is 4.5 miles

Good to Know

  • Spring and fall are the ideal seasons to hike Ladder Canyon. This hike should not be attempted during summer when temperatures in the desert can reach 120 °F making the trip very dangerous.
  • Winter is also an option, but be sure to check the weather to ensure that there are no storms in the forecast. Ladder Canyon is a watercourse and is subject to flash floods when it rains.
  • This hike will take between 3 and 4 hours to complete, so you will need to carry at least 2 liters of water per person. Always be sure to pack some food for emergencies.
  • Give yourself plenty of time to complete the loop so you are back before dark.
  • You’ll be climbing ladders and walking through rough terrain, so be sure to wear a good pair of hiking boots. It’s also a good idea to carry a GPS or trail map.
  • If you are looking for solitude, go on a weekday. On the weekends, the area gets a fair number of visitors.
  • Getting There: The Ladder Canyon Trailhead, head east on Interstate 10 until you reach the Coachella Valley. Take State Route 86 south towards Brawley for about 10 miles and then make a left turn on 62nd Continue 2.2 miles until you reach Johnson Street and turn right. Continue on Johnson Street for 2.0 miles until you reach Painted Canyon Road on the left. Turn left on Painted Canyon Road and continue for approximately 4 miles until it ends. There is a dirt parking lot at the trailhead and a kiosk marks the beginning of the hike. Painted Canyon Road is unpaved, so proceed with caution. Four-wheel drive vehicles are recommended, however, the road is passable in a two-wheel drive vehicle if you drive carefully.

Spring months are a great time to explore the rugged desert landscape surrounding Palm Springs.  One of our favorite hikes, and one of the most unusual in southern California, is Ladder Canyon.... Read More »


Pizza Options

PIZZA? HAVE IT DELIVERED!

This past year has presented us with amazing opportunities to get delicious food delivered directly to our doorsteps.  But the grandaddy of delivery, the classic that stands above the rest, is of course, pizza!  Palm Springs is fortunate to have several pizzerias offering some truly awesome pies.  Check out some of our favorites here.

Bill’s Pizza – Definitely one of the best-known pizza’s in town, this is a local and tourist favorite. Famous for their thin crust pizza, they offer a huge selection of toppings as well as famous house combinations like ‘the Elton John.’ They serve up vegan and GF options as well. You can find Bill’s on several delivery apps.

http://www.billspizzapalmsprings.com/

Giuseppe’s – This is a local hot spot for pizza. Both their thin crust and deep-dish pies are delicious. They offer a nice selection of salads and traditional Italian dishes, but pizza is the star of the show! They serve vegan and GF options and have an in-house delivery service.

https://giuseppesps.com/

Birba – This beautiful outdoor Italian restaurant makes some amazing pizza. They offer 6 to 7 pizza options nightly, all rustic and delicious. Add a few of their very tasty ‘small dishes’ to spice things up. You can find Birba on several delivery apps.

https://birbaps.com/

Blaze Pizza – This national chain makes great and affordable single sized pizzas and you can customize every bite – from crust, to cheese and toppings.  For a great GF option, they offer a terrific cauliflower crust. Their home page connects to a food delivery app.

https://www.blazepizza.com/location/blaze-pizza-palm-springs/menu

Spaghetteria – This hole-in-the wall, vinyl table cloth Italian restaurant, run by a mom and her two daughters is beloved by locals. They have a great selection of pizza, all made with love. Their calzones are awesome as well! Pick up or delivery from their yelp page.

https://www.yelp.com/biz/spaghetteria-palm-springs

Stuft Pizza – Famous for over 40 years throughout the valley, Stuft Pizza’s original location is in La Quinta’s old downtown village.  A newer location in Palm Desert’s Westfield mall is a bit closer to Palm Springs.  Delivery available through Postmates.

https://stuftpizzabarandgrill.com/

Barrel District Pizza – New in Rancho Mirage, Barrel District has an awesome selection of homemade pizzas, including several GF cauliflower crust options. They also offer terrific salads and starters.  Pick-up only, with limited hours (4-8PM) but definitely worth the drive!

https://barreldistrictpizza.com/

 

This past year has presented us with amazing opportunities to get delicious food delivered directly to our doorsteps.  But the grandaddy of delivery, the classic that stands above the rest, is of... Read More »


Joshua Tree

JOSHUA TREE

Winter sunshine months are the perfect time for exploring the rugged desert landscape surrounding Palm Springs.  One of our favorites is exploring some of the 80,000 preserved acres that make up Joshua Tree National Park.  Less than an hour away from Santiago, the park straddles the cactus studded Colorado Desert and the Mohave Desert and gets its name from the region’s twisted, bristled Joshua Trees.

Joshua Tree National Park is a stunning expanse of natural desert beauty has been preserved for the people for over 80 years, and there are plenty of reasons for you to check it out on your next visit to Santiago.

From the park’s iconic and distinctive namesake trees to the breathtaking granite rock formations, from the desert wildlife to the flourishing cacti and desert plants, there’s much more to see than you might expect. Everyone from curbside photo-taker to enthusiastic back-country hiker should take time to visit this special place near Palm Springs.

This protected area encompasses over 1,200 square miles of the stunning Mojave Desert. Over 1.3 million visitors enter the park each year to experience Joshua Tree’s scenic vistas, that are easily accessible via paved roads that traverse the length of the park.

Definitely visit one of the Park’s Visitor Centers in order to plan your time at the park most wisely. Whether you’re all about hiking, camping, photography, rock climbing or simply enjoying the serene desert scenery, the helpful Park Rangers will give you the park map and let you know the best spots to visit for your interests, and you can find out if there are special programs or tours available.

You can also find more information and helpful resources on the park’s web site: https://www.nps.gov/jotr/index.htm. The Plan Your Visit page is especially helpful.

Below you’ll find some of frequent Santiago Resort Guest, Toby J. Morris’ images of Joshua Tree. Toby is a fine art nature and landscape photographer out of Las Vegas, and he’s photographed 31 of the 61 National Parks, as well as numerous National Monuments. You can find his Joshua Tree images available for purchase on www.tobyjmorris.com.

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Winter sunshine months are the perfect time for exploring the rugged desert landscape surrounding Palm Springs.  One of our favorites is exploring some of the 80,000 preserved acres that make up Joshua... Read More »


Idyllwild

ROAD TRIP: IDYLLWILD

At over 5000 feet in elevation, “Mile High Idyllwild” is a favorite day trip for locals and travelers alike.  The 80-minute drive passes spectacular vista points as you climb from the desert floor and reach deep into the San Jacinto Mountains.  Once there, you’ll find a rustic and charming, art-filled village with galleries, antique stores, restaurants and other surprises.  Nearby hiking trails let you explore the quiet wilderness area high above Palm Springs.  With temperatures well below Palm Springs’, it’s a cool getaway during the desert summer.

The rustic town of Idyllwild is one of our favorite day trips from Palm Springs.  The 80-minute drive up mountainous and windy Route 74 offers some breathtaking views.  Leave time for a couple of stops along the way at any of the vista turnouts overlooking the entire Coachella Valley.  Great for photo-ops or just taking in the view.

Once there, you’ll notice the six-block downtown area is full of wonderful small shops, galleries and funky thrift stores, where some very entertaining (and sometimes peculiar) items can be found.  Idyllwild has several tasty restaurants that will be happy to see you and are perfect for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

The area boasts some world class hiking including the San Jacinto Mountain Peak Loop.  For something a little less ambitious, start at the Idyllwild Nature Center.  It’s a perfect place for a day hike, bird watching or even bring your dog on leash for a day in the woods.  The nature center is a very large preserve with trails looping in all directions from the Visitors Center.

Idyllwild hosts several notable events annually including the Idyllwild Jazz Festival, The Art Walk and The Autumn Leaf Walks.  This little town also gives the October month of Halloween a true reason for being. From the Hollow’s Eve Parade, Ghost Town Haunted maze, to the Zombie run, they are very serious about this ghouls’ holiday!

Whenever in town, or scheduling a Palms Springs trip, it’s always worth taking a moment to peruse the upcoming Idyllwild calendar of events, or simply just schedule a day trip up the mountain!  It is a perfect days get-a-way!

Here are a few helpful links:

The Official Town website:

http://www.idyllwild.com/

A great restaurant list that was put together by a fun food blog:

https://www.theinfatuation.com/los-angeles/guides/idyllwild-restaurants

Trip Advisor’s Idyllwild Page:

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Tourism-g32519-Idyllwild_California-Vacations.html

At over 5000 feet in elevation, “Mile High Idyllwild” is a favorite day trip for locals and travelers alike.  The 80-minute drive passes spectacular vista points as you climb from the desert... Read More »


patio dining

OUTDOOR DINING PALM SPRINGS

These days, with all of us preferring outdoor dining, many local Palm Springs restaurants have elevated and expanded their patios.  Enjoying meals outside has always been a highlight of a Palm Springs trip, and now it’s better and safer than ever!  And as many parts of the country brace for cold and wet weather, temperatures in Palm Springs are approaching perfection.  Just right for enjoying a meal outside!

Here’s a few of our favorite outdoor spots:

Eight4Nine – One of the most popular restaurants in Palm Springs, Eight4Nine also boasts one of the city’s largest outdoor seating areas.  Its extensive menu of California cuisine consistently offers up many delicious choices to consider.

https://eight4nine.com/

Felipe’s – Terrific local Mexican place – not fancy, but made with love! Large patio and great service.

https://apps.felipespalmsprings.com/

Jake’s – A local favorite, Jake’s serves terrific California Cuisine around a small courtyard patio. Be sure to save room for dessert, they’re some of the most decadent in town!

http://www.jakespalmsprings.com/

Farm – Known for their great breakfast and lunch menu served in a beautiful wisteria filled garden.  Be sure to make reservations for the French inspired multi-course chef’s tasting menu, it fills up very quickly!

https://www.farmpalmsprings.com/

Copley’s – Located in the historic Cary Grant estate with its large and beautiful outdoor courtyard, Copley’s is known for a delicious menu including steaks, fresh seafood and an impressive wine list. Considered a classic here in Palm Springs.

https://www.copleyspalmsprings.com/

Ruben & Ozzy’s Seafood Grill – This casual fun patio spot serves wonderful pastas, fish tacos and delicious broiled oysters!  A great place to go and fill the table with small plates to share!

https://www.rubenandozzys.com/

El Mirasol – This Mexican restaurant has two wonderful locations including the shaded and cozy patio at the Los Arbelos Hotel and the original Palm Canyon location near Santiago.   Considered to serve one of the best margaritas in town.

https://www.elmirasolrest.com

Tommy Bahamas Marlin Bar – But isn’t that a clothing store? We’re here to tell you it’s also a very tasty and casual patio restaurant serving seasonal cuisine and outstanding fresh drinks!  A perfect spot to drop in while shopping along Palm Canyon.

https://www.tommybahama.com/restaurants/marlin-bars/palm-springs-ca.html

Roly China Fusion – Delicious Modern Asian food, including many vegan options. Roly has quickly become a new Palm Springs favorite.  Dinner at the “pop-up” dining room around the pool at the Twist Hotel makes for a delightful evening!

https://www.rolychinafusion.com/

V Wine Lounge – What’s not to love about this patio dining spot with a first-rate wine list, and cocktails too!  The small plate menu is eclectic and delicious.  A perfect spot to enjoy a Palm Springs evening!

http://www.vwinelounge.com/

 For even more beautiful options, check out this list from Visit Palm Springs:

https://www.visitpalmsprings.com/blog/palm-springs-restaurants-offering-outdoor-seating

These days, with all of us preferring outdoor dining, many local Palm Springs restaurants have elevated and expanded their patios.  Enjoying meals outside has always been a highlight of a Palm Springs... Read More »


Answers

QUESTIONS? WE’VE GOT ANSWERS

We know you have plenty of questions on changes happening here at Santiago and how we’re addressing the current situation.  We’re committed now more than ever to providing you a safe place to stay and play.  Over the past several months we’ve implemented new practices to make your stay relaxing and enjoyable while keeping our guests and staff safe.  We’ve answered four of your top questions here.  Have more?  Feel free to give us a call!

Is the Pool open?

Of course!  With the largest swimming pool of any gay resort in Palm Springs, it’s easy to keep a happy distance and still enjoy the sparkling water and desert sunshine.  Our cushy chaise lounges have been arranged at six foot intervals and are regularly sprayed with a disinfectant to keep everyone safe.  We’ve made sure there’s plenty of room around the pool for you!

Is there still a morning Breakfast?

YES, and now it’s better than ever.  From 8am to 10am each morning, our staff is serving breakfast from the Cantina window.  There’s a beautiful ala carte menu with plenty of delicious items to choose from.   Warm croissants, fruit skewers, and our special Santiago overnight oats are just a few of the offerings.  And of course, there’s freshly brewed coffee.  All you need to do is step up to the window and give us your order.  Before you know it, you’ll be handed your own breakfast tray and be ready to start the day.

What if I need something from the Staff?

We’ve implemented an inhouse texting service for you to easily request whatever you might be needing.  Room servicing?  Pool towels?  Lunch order?  Shoot us off a text and we’ll have your request handled before you can turn over in your chaise lounge and get that back side tan.

How has your room cleaning process changed?

While we’ve always prided ourselves on room cleanliness, we have made changes to ensure your room is as clean and safe as possible.  Every surface (including our dreamy mattresses) and touch points like light switches and TV remotes will have been thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.  Our individual room HVAC units guarantee fresh air into your room.  Bedcovers and throw pillows are washed after each guest stay.  Room keys are sanitized.  We’ve put a lot of thought into how to make your stay as safe as possible and know you appreciate it.

Our great staff went through thorough training to welcome you back.  Bob, Nigel, Jonathan, Greg, Mario, David, BJ and Rick are all eager to see you.  And of course, Kent and Charles will be at the front desk welcoming you back to your desert oasis.  Thank you for joining us!

We know you have plenty of questions on changes happening here at Santiago and how we’re addressing the current situation.  We’re committed now more than ever to providing you a safe place... Read More »


bike rides santiago

MORNING BIKE RIDES

Before the sun heats up and the pool at Santiago becomes irresistible, one of our favorite morning activities is to grab the bikes and head out exploring some of the great neighborhoods of Palm Springs.   With wide flat streets and plenty of bike paths, it’s an easy way to discover what a remarkable oasis you’re in.  We’ve put together a few of our favorite tours and destinations here.

Twin Palms – One of the cool “hidden gem” neighborhoods of Palm Springs! This neighborhood is filled with beautiful mid-century homes so well taken care of you can really feel the neighborhood pride. Between La Verne Way, Palm Canyon and Camino Real, Twin Palms creates a perfect triangle neighborhood to explore.

Moorton Botanical Gardens – This funky little garden was created by Clark Chester “Cactus Slim” Moorten and his wife, Patricia. Cactus Slim was an original Keystone Cop and a stand-in for Howard Hughes. Still in the family and now run by his son Chester, this one-acre garden is intimate while showcasing thousands of specimens from around the world.  It has limited summer hours, but opens early, making it the perfect easy morning bike ride for the summer days here in Palm Springs.

www.moortenbotanicalgarden.com

Summer Hours 9AM — 1PM
Friday, Saturday, Sunday only

Mesquite Bike Trail – Start out along the S Riverside wash trail just behind Santiago.  At Sunrise and Sunny Dunes you’ll find the entrance to this fun, short trail at the beginning of the Mesquite Country Club & Condos.  You can ride through to see the entire Mesquite golf course and the area that is currently being considered the Mesquite Desert Preserve. You end up on El Cielo, and you can loop back through back streets of the neighborhoods “Little Beverly Hills” (another mid-century gem), “Los Compadres” (a 70’s era Brady Bunch neighborhood) and the beautiful “Deepwell’ neighborhood.

Sherman’s Deli – A short 1.5-mile ride from Santiago, Sherman’s Deli is a true Palm Springs institution. They have a fantastic “NY Deli Style” menu that includes Jewish deli favorite like bagels and lox, matzo ball soup, potato latkes, and many more traditional breakfast favorites. The outdoor seating on the front patio sits in morning shade, with a bike rack right in front to make lock up very easy!

shermansdeli.com

Before the sun heats up and the pool at Santiago becomes irresistible, one of our favorite morning activities is to grab the bikes and head out exploring some of the great neighborhoods... Read More »


OUTDOOR DINING PALM SPRINGS

It’s hard to beat dining outside under palm trees with mountain views and blue skies in the oasis called Palm Springs. Enjoying a warm meal and a chilled cocktail, with a gorgeous California sunset in the background, is a vacation must. These local Palm Springs restaurants have the perfect patios for outdoor dining. Here’s where to enjoy your next al fresco meal!

Birba

Italian inspired funky hip outdoor restaurant. Serves food later.

https://birbaps.com/

So.Pa

Decadent, refined, and intimate, ‘foodie’ menu that offers a unique alfresco dining experience.

https://lhorizonpalmsprings.com/sopa-restaurant

Blue Coyote

Casual Mexican and Southwestern restaurant in downtown Palm Springs. Famous for the “Wild Coyote” margarita.

http://www.bluecoyotegrill.com/

Spencer’s

A real favorite of tourists and locals alike. Beautiful outdoor garden that serves the classic extensive menu of delicious options. Great for a date night!

https://www.spencersrestaurant.com/

Copley’s

Dine at the previous Cary Grant estate, this romantic restaurant offers elevated American dishes served on an exquisite candle lit patio.

https://www.copleyspalmsprings.com/

John Henry’s Cafe

A local’s favorite. Traditional American menu made with love, served on a cozy patio.

https://johnhenryscafe.com/

Le Vallauris

An absolutely beautiful tree lit patio that serves very traditional, and delicious French Cuisine.

http://www.levallauris.com/

Antigua Kitchen and Bar

One of he biggest outdoor patios on Palm Canyon Drive, American and Latin American dishes made with locally sourced farm to table ingredients.

https://antiguapalmsprings.com/

And a few Lunch & Brunch options as well….

Tyler’s Burgers

Tyler’s is considered by many to have one of the best burgers in town. Only open for lunch, served on a cozy covered patio.

http://www.tylersburgers.com/

Cheeky’s

Made from scratch creative breakfast, brunch & lunch menus. Did someone say bacon flights & specialty cinnamon rolls??

https://cheekysps.com/

Farm

French inspired menu served in a secret wisteria garden tucked behind the plaza buildings. Absolutely delicious, made with love food served fresh every day.

https://www.farmpalmsprings.com/

It's hard to beat dining outside under palm trees with mountain views and blue skies in the oasis called Palm Springs. Enjoying a warm meal and a chilled cocktail, with a gorgeous... Read More »