Palm Springs stands at the epicenter of the midcentury modern movement, boasting large concentrations of this iconic design and architecture style.
The challenge of fine yet informal desert living was — and is — a perfect palette for inspiration and inventions that meet the needs of modern desert dwellers. Natural materials embrace the sleek designs used for climate-sensitive buildings, elegantly blending the indoor and out.
The Uptown Design District is a haven for midcentury modern collectors, artisans, retailers, architects, and designers from all over the world. Located on North Palm Canyon Drive between Tachevah Drive and Alejo Road, the area has seen a renaissance in the past few years with boutiques, galleries, studios, and shops developing a prestigious reputation for offering the best in period antiques and collectibles.
The gallery-quality A La Mod in Uptown showcases high-caliber midcentury modern housewares and furnishings, as well as select new artists and sculptures with retro-inspired designs. All vintage pieces are restored to pristine condition to maintain their integrity. A La Mod’s commitment to customer service attracts an international clientele. 844 N. Palm Canyon Dr., Palm Springs. 760-327-0707; www.alamod768.com
Travelers seeking sophisticated souvenirs and locals looking for the perfect objet love Just Fabulous. This quirky retail hub represents the playful nature of Palm Springs with a unique assortment of novelties, home décor, and music that reflects the design, fashion, and architecture of the region. 515 N. Palm Canyon Dr., Palm Springs. 760-864-1300; bjustfabulous.com
Indulge your fascination with contemporary and modern furnishings, floor coverings, and fine housewares at Pelago Palm Springs. This studio gives a clear shoutout to midcentury enthusiasts by featuring new products with clean lines influenced by the 1950s, ’60s, and ’70s. Look no further for interesting fixtures, lighting, and finishes. 901 N. Palm Canyon Dr., Ste. 105, Palm Springs. 760-322-3999; www.pelagopalmsprings.com
The beyond-cool, minimalist enclave Boulevard provides an on-trend, diverse mix of vintage and new furniture with attention to detail and craftsmanship. Owner Jay Hart, a two-time Academy Award nominee for set decoration, personally selects items presented, keeping stock in the realms of classic, beautiful, and iconic. 800 N. Palm Canyon Dr., Ste. A, Palm Springs. 760-832-9011; www.boulevardps.com
Just Modern speaks to the past with authenticity and captures the colorful spirit of mid-mod Palm Springs. A paradise for modernists hoping for an interesting, natural, or recycled retro find, Just Modern also carries unique works by local and California artists. Its home décor and furnishings stay true to the midcentury movement with brand names such as Modfire and Atomic Living Design Collection; 90 percent of the store’s merchandise is made in the United States. 901 N. Palm Canyon Dr., Ste. 101, Palm Springs. 760-322-5600; www.justmoderndecor.com
Hoping to score a rare find from the past? Be on the lookout for fun and funky treasures at fabulous thrift stores throughout the Coachella Valley. Palm Springs is renowned for its high-end secondhand stores, so grab hold of the best labels from local style-makers.
Showcasing authentic vintage pieces that carry you back to a bygone era, Déjà Vu Vintage Finery offers a skillfully curated experience focusing on midcentury modern clothing and accessories for men and women. Find an exquisite, well-chosen collection including ’40s brooches, party dresses from the ’50s, and hard-to-come-by period statement necklaces. 664 N. Palm Canyon Dr., Palm Springs. 760-699-5365; www.dejavuroom.com
The new Palm Springs Vintage Market kicks off Feb. 2 in the parking lot at Spa Resort Casino. Featuring regional and local vendors, such as Déjà Vu and Route 66 West, the market will offer furniture, art, vintage clothing, jewelry, accessories, record albums, and more. 8 a.m.-2 p.m. the first Sunday of every month. 450 N. Indian Canyon Dr., Palm Springs. 760-534-7968; www.palmspringsvintagemarket.com
You never know what cool finds you’ll unearth at Revivals. This resale superstore with three valley locations offers a budget-friendly mod-vibe with everything from jewelry and art to furniture and appliances. One-of-a-kind and unusual items, plus discounted “purchased new” products are available; resale pieces are either consigned or donated. Sales benefit Desert AIDS Project. 611 S. Palm Canyon Dr., Palm Springs. 760-318-6430; 68401 Hwy. 111, Cathedral City; 760-969-5747. 72750 Dinah Shore Dr., Palm Desert. 760-992-0499; www.revivalsstores.com
Designers and buyers in the know head to Modern Spaces in Cathedral City, an all-vintage co-op gallery with mini-shops inside. Midcentury modern, ELLE décor, and Hollywood Regency mix with awesome sunglasses, volcanic-look pottery, chrome coffee tables, and art. 68929 Perez Rd., Ste. K, Cathedral City. 760-770-5333; modern-spaces.net
Also in Cat City’s design neighborhood, Hedge features industrial and mid-mod furnishings. Good taste abounds in this stylish studio with functional and affordable pieces. Find American furniture by Paul McCobb and Florence Knoll, glimmering ’60s sculptures, and ’70s mirrored credenzas and carts repurposed as home décor. Owners Charles and Thomas are known as gracious hosts at the ready with bottled water or an espresso to help personalize your shopping experience. 68929 Perez Rd., Ste. F, Cathedral City. 760-770-0090; www.hedgepalmsprings.com