Disco under the lights, dance under the stars, or listen to hot sounds from local and visiting musicians. From pulsing beats to cool jazz, Greater Palm Springs offers lots of seductive nighttime activities.
For a stylish night out with Hollywood energy, visit Costas Night Club (www.costasnightclub.com) inside JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa in Palm Desert. This place prides itself on sexy patrons and hot, pulsating music. In Indian Wells, Stir Lounge (www.renaissanceesmeralda.com) at Renaissance Esmeralda Resort & Spa offers elegance with attitude and a dress code.
If you’re looking for a place that always has some kind of action going on, check out Hunters Nightclub (www.huntersnightclubs.com) on busy, gay-centric Arenas Road in Palm Springs or Toucan’s Tiki Lounge (www.toucanstikilounge.com) located in the north end of town. Both cater primarily to the LGBT crowd, but are straight friendly.
Las Casuelas Terraza has been voted “best of” all kinds of stuff in local publications, from Best Happy Hour to Best Outdoor Dining to Best Live Music and Dance Spot. And for good reason: The energy in the outdoor palapas is palpable. Boogie to a live band playing classic rock and oldies (www.lascasuelas.com).
Village Pub is a neighborhood bar with good food, reasonably priced drinks, and live bands in the main room. A nearby dance floor never empties, and you can dance, drink, and dine until 1:30 a.m. Check out the action on their webcam before you make the drive (www.palmspringsvillagepub.com).
A Palm Springs institution for more than 30 years, Zelda’s Nightclub (www.zeldasnightclub.com) is one of the best-known places in the area for dancing, drinking, and few-holds-barred fun.
For casual chillin’ to cool sounds, try the delightfully unassuming Woody’s Burgers (www.woodysburgersps.com). Enjoy a traditional diner feel in front and a lounge vibe in back with live music. For a more retro adventure, settle into the Starlight Lounge, located in the mod-styled Riviera Palm Springs (www.psriviera.com), or duck into the past at Melvyn’s at Ingleside Inn (www.inglesideinn.com), where Rat Packers once palled around. Enjoy dancing and entertainment nightly at Casablanca Lounge. And at Spencer’s Restaurant (www.spencersrestaurant.com), relax to live piano music while you dine in style.
Castelli’s Ristorante in Palm Desert serves up Tuscan-style bistro fare with live music nightly (www.castellis.cc). And Vicky’s of Santa Fe has a fantastic piano lounge featuring local and visiting talent during the week and on Sunday afternoons (www.vickysofsantafe.com).
Ace Hotel & Swim Club
Hollywood & The Ace
Ace Hotel & Swim Club in Palm Springs is so much more than a mere hotel. When not hosting fundraisers for local organizations, the Ace comes alive with youthful energy, ripe with “tequila and spontaneous dancing,” in the Amigo Room. Folks at the Ace are wildly creative. Check out the hip resort’s popular For the Record events (Sept. 12-13 and Dec. 12-13), a series of 360-degree live interactive fusion of theater and supper club with an emphasis on film directors and movie soundtracks. Also, be prepared for anything during the Ace’s weekly theme nights, from making disco lanyards to playing sissy bingo (if you need to ask, you need to go). Other nights are devoted to dancing, with DJs spinning everything from funk to samba to dance hall to juke (www.acehotel.com/palmsprings).
David A. Lee
Do the strip in Palm Springs on Thursday nights. Shuffle up one side of Palm Canyon Drive and down the other. Pop into LuLu California Bistro, Las Casuelas Terraza, Kaiser Grille, or any number of popular downtown hot spots. Let the energy guide you. From 7 to 10 p.m. (6 p.m. in the summer), Palm Canyon closes to traffic and opens to VillageFest, where food booths, arts, crafts and entertainment reign. In Palm Desert, an elegant boulevard beckons. Stroll El Paseo during Art Walk the first Thursday of the month through season. Visit galleries, see new art, and absorb the street’s sophisticated ambiance.