Retail Therapy

In the land of peace and tranquility, even a shopping spree has the vibe of a vacation getaway

Downtown Palm Springs


Close your eyes. Breathe. Visualize an idyllic shopping experience: a beautiful atmosphere, world-class treasures, knowledgeable and attentive service, and amenities at every turn.

Now open your eyes to the desert, where you shop alfresco amid stately palm trees and clear, blue sky. Here, outdoor shopping destinations offer a wide scope of retail options. From elegant to inexpensive, modern to traditional, fun to functional, the Palm Springs area teems with one-stop shopping opportunities. Here’s a guide to your next shopping spree.

Whether you’re looking for novelties and resort wear (downtown) or antiques, fine collectibles, and home furnishings (uptown), Palm Canyon Drive provides excellent shopping with a village vibe. Over the last few years, the Uptown Design District has drawn many retailers and businesses specializing in interior design, fine art, and collectibles. This eclectic grouping of stores includes Trina Turk and Wil Stiles, both offering fine apparel for men and women, as well as interior design magnets Christopher Anthony Ltd., Boulevard, Insolito Home, Dwight Polen Fine Chinese Antiques, Modern Way, Design Within Reach, and House 849.

Downtown, you’ll find clothing and lifestyle stores, such as Crystal Fantasy, Chico’s, and Mr. G’s for Kids. And don’t pass up The Corridor (at Palm Canyon Drive and Alejo Road), which offers excellent shopping, including a great book and novelty store: Just Fabulous.

Shoppers find solace and stellar retail outlets at The River at Rancho Mirage, a fluid place with 1.7 million gallons of water flowing through pools, streams, and fountains. One of the great things about this complex is finding multiple specialty shops in a single setting, from Bang & Olufsen (audio products) to Bath & Body Works, Diane’s Beachwear, and Robann’s Jewelers. For the gourmands in your group, there’s Tulip Hill Winery and Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory. For those who enjoy a smoke from time to time, Cohiba Cigar Lounge is a great way to end the day.

Plummers, a 40,000-square-foot store located on Dinah Shore Drive, offers a wide selection of furniture for every room in the home and office — all rooted in the spirit of European design.

Imagine a mile of divine temptations, from dazzling jewelry and designer fashion to fine art, home décor, and spas and salons. This is El Paseo — a mix of more than 300 shops and restaurants offering just about everything under the sun. At the west end of this avenue of elegance, The Shops on El Paseo sets the tone with Burberry, Gucci, St. John, Ralph Lauren, Vilebrequin, Bottega Veneta, Optical Shop of Aspen, Leggiadro, BCBGMAXAZRIA, Soma Intimates, Chico’s, Cos Bar, and Stuart Weitzman.

A block to the east, Fe Zandi offers daytime suits, eveningwear, and special-occasion fashions for women, while gentlemen seek Pompeii’s Men’s Apparel.

The Centre on El Paseo buzzes with independent boutiques, including Frasca Jewelers, which offers exquisite pieces from the world’s most renowned design houses, as well as Mr. Marcus, Storekeeper, Mephisto, The Upper Crust, and Palm Desert Tobacco.

You can spend hours at The Gardens on El Paseo (between Larkspur Lane and San Pablo Avenue), a 200,000-square-foot ode to open-air tranquility and fashion with Saks Fifth Avenue as its elite anchor, flanked by a rich mix of national brands: Tiffany & Co., Eileen Fisher, Louis Vuitton, Anthropologie, Cole Haan, J. Crew, Tommy Bahama’s, Coach, Talbots, and The Walking Company, as well as locally owned retailers such as BB•one and Gail Jewelers, which distinguishes itself with its fine selection of diamonds, rare and colored. New tenants include Sephora, a coup in beauty and skin care with its expertise and unparalleled combination of more than 200 classic and emerging brands, and True Religion Brand Jeans, offering the brand’s entire collection for men, women, and kids.

Adjacent to The Gardens, El Paseo Village serves up Lucky Brand Jeans, Banana Republic, Kate Spade, Bebe, Apple Store, Juicy Couture, Between the Sheets, and children’s clothing retailer Janie and Jack.

Nearby Leeds & Son is where you’ll find the finest in collectible and the most sought-after timepieces, while across the street, DeLuca Jewelers is the place to go for custom-designed necklaces, rings, bracelets, and earrings. El Paseo Jewelry, located a few blocks west of these establishments, asserts its expertise in gemstones.

Add style to your step at Robert’s Fine Shoes, which offers Salvatore Ferragamo, Bruno Magli, Donald J Pliner, and Eric Javits — plus handbags and accessories.

When it’s time to cool off, 4 Seasons Swimwear has a large selection of one-piece and bikini swimsuits, Bing Bang Breeze Skirts by Speedo, stylish pareos, men’s racing jammers, and accessories such as caps, goggles, boards, and flippers.

You can even find Chelsea Taylor-designed jewelry, made with Crystallized Swarovski Elements, at the Chelsea Taylor store.

Also on El Paseo, you’ll find luxurious kitchen accessories at The Upper Crust; edgy ladies attire at InSanity at Plaza Robergé, which also includes the Denise Robergé jewelry bar; and the area’s widest selection of fine Chinese antique furniture and one-of-kind accessories at Dwight Polen Fine Chinese Antiques, which exhibits a rich array of provincial tables, rustic chests and cabinets, folding screens, custom lamps, artwork, and more.

North of El Paseo, a more traditional mall, Westfield Palm Desert, has major department stores (Macy’s and JCPenny) and chains, such as Express and Foot Locker, as well as Wet Seal, Hot Topic, Hollister, and Forever 21. Gadget junkies and techies love Brookstone and Gamestop. There’s also a selection of affordable jewelry stores, such as Kay Jewelers, Kevin Jewelers, and Zales Jewelers.

Cabazon Outlet Stores is one of California’s most popular outlet shopping destinations, with more than 15 million shoppers visiting per year. You’ll find deals at Crate & Barrel, adidas, Puma, and Oakley, to name only a few. Adjacent to the Cabazon Outlet Stores, Desert Hills Premium Outlets is a true bargain hunter’s haven, featuring Gucci,Prada,Michael Kors, Burberry, Giorgio, Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, Yves Saint Laurent, and Jimmy Choo.

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