palm springs gay bars

Best Gay Bars in the Desert

Keep this handy guide for the upcoming Greater Palm Springs Pride weekend featuring desert LGBTQ hot spots that offer cheap drinks, sassy drag, nightly karaoke, and lots of cruising.

Jeremy Kinser Current Digital, LGBT, Restaurants

palm springs gay bars
Hunter's has been a fixture of the gay bar scene on Arenas Road in downtown Palm Springs.
PHOTOGRAPH BY JIM POWERS

So you want to go gay bar hopping in Palm Springs? You’d better take a disco nap beforehand because there are more watering holes to choose from than almost any other smallish resort area in the country.

While the majority line a block of Arenas Road in Palm Springs making it an unofficial gay mecca, there’s a smattering of bars spread throughout Coachella Valley. Indeed, you would be hard pressed to find a local area that doesn’t have a substantial queer patronage.

To help you on your way, here are all the LGBTQ-specific places to grab a thirst-quenching drink, watch a sassy drag show, cruise a potential partner, or just dance the night away.• READ

• READ NEXT: Suggested Eats in Palm Springs.

The Alibi Palm Springs

369 N. Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs
Situated in an historic 1930s building and sporting a classic 1961 Continental jukebox loaded with your favorite tunes, Alibi offers a relaxing vibe. On weekends it beefs up so patrons can enjoy mouthwatering Heyday burgers on the patio.
thealibipalmsprings.com

The Amp

68-718 E Palm Canyon #201, Cathedral City
The desert’s queer-friendliest sports bar offers seven huge video screens for the LGBTQ jock crowd to enjoy the big game. Patrons also score with the interactive dartboard and pool table. Plus, there’s a drag night. No wonder this place is considered “a sports bar with pizazz!”
ampsportslounge.net

The Barracks

67625 E. Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs
This is the place for gentlemen who like to crank it up a notch or 10. The Barracks offers a respite from the heat for the fetish-crowd fellas who enjoy a man in (or out of) uniform, not to mention one of the valley’s cruisiest beer busts. Plus, you don’t want to miss the annual Mr. Barracks contest.
thebarracksbarps.com

Blackbook

315 E. Arenas Road, Palm Springs
Don’t be put off by the dark name. Pop in here for souped-up bar food and a complex cocktail and you’ll find out why our readers voted Blackbook their favorite gay bar in Palm Springs.
blackbookbar.com

 chillbarpalmsprings

PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY CHILL BAR

Feel like dancing? Chill Bar is a good place to start.

Chill Bar Palm Springs

217 E. Arenas Road, Palm Springs
Consistently one of the most popular venues on Arenas, Chill Bar boasts a super friendly vibe, diverse crowd, eye candy galore, and perhaps the busiest dance floor in the valley. It’s the perfect place to, ahem, chill out from the desert heat.
chillbarpalmsprings.com

Eagle 501 Bar

301 E. Arenas Road, Palm Springs
Don’t come here expecting the fabled anything-goes back rooms you’ll find in other locations like Los Angeles and Manhattan. That doesn’t mean the Eagle isn’t just as sexy. Here you’ll find friendly, handsome servers, musky patrons, and hearty cocktails.
eagle501bar.com

Hunters Palm Springs

302 E. Arenas Road, Palm Springs
One of Palm Springs’s most venerable venues, Hunters has everything a LGBTQ person could want, from cheap cocktails and generous pours to gorgeous go-go boys.
hunterspalmsprings.com

Quadz

200 S. Indian Canyon, Palm Springs
Formerly SpurLine Video Bar, this renamed Arenas staple is now a home away from home for musical theater enthusiasts, thanks to its multiple TV screens that blast often hilariously obscure clips of your favorite show tunes. Plus, you can “sing out Louise,” in Broadway parlance, on one of the valley’s most popular karaoke stages.
facebook.com/quadzpalmspringsca

RetroRoom Lounge

125 E. Tahquitz Canyon Way #102, Palm Springs
This watering hole definitely lives up to its name. Stop by for the karaoke (seven nights a week with hilarious drag queen hosts who’ll encourage you to sing your heart out), and you’ll stay for the handcrafted specialty cocktails.
retroroomlounge.com

retroroompalmsprings

PHOTOGRAPH BY NEIL HUSVAR

The RetroRoom in Palm Springs encourages audience participation.

The Roost Lounge

68718 E. Palm Canyon Drive, Cathedral City
Voted favorite gay bar in Cat City by Palm Springs Life readers, The Roost offers live music performances, five huge TV screens where you can watch your favorite video clips, and on Mondays, your favorite beverages at happy hour prices all day long.
theroostcc.com

Runway at CCBC

68300 Gay Resort Drive, Cathedral City
After splashing around poolside at the clothing optional CCBC resort, head over to the on-site Runway, the full-service restaurant with any number of other activities like the Sunday T-dance and Kiki Fridays.
runwayccbc.com

stacyspalmsprings

PHOTOGRAPH BY JIM POWERS

Stacy’s has brought the piano bar back to the gay bar scene in downtown Palm Springs.

Stacy’s

220 E. Arenas Road, Palm Springs
One of the newest and most bustling hot spots on Arenas, you can always expect to be entertained by live music. The desert’s version of a classic piano bar offers a rotating array of the valley’s most talented vocalists, pianists, along with notable special guests.
stacysbarps.com

Streetbar Palm Springs

220 E. Arenas Road, Palm Springs
Step off the sidewalk and into Streetbar. Show off your karaoke skills Sunday through Wednesday and revel in your ‘80s faves on Retro Night Thursdays. Save the weekends to groove to contemporary hits while sipping top shelf drink specials.
psstreetbar.com

Studio One 11

67575 E. Palm Canyon Drive, Cathedral City
This lounge may be low-key, but the staff and crowd are warm and inviting. Studio One 11 is ideal for an after work drink or a great first-date location where you can actually carry on a conversation.
studio111bar.com

Tool Shed

600 E. Sunny Dunes Road, Palm Springs
The desert’s lustiest Levis and leather bar, Tool Shed, is a Warm Sands staple. Grab a beer and shoot a game of pool, or just indulge in a hearty cocktail while checking out the furr-ociously friendly crowd.
pstoolshed.com

Toucans Tiki Lounge

2100 N. Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs
Think of this tiki-themed dance club as your desert oasis. Located on the west side of North Palm Canyon, Toucans serves as a beacon for visitors driving in from the north and west. Popular theme nights include Latin Fever Monday and Dirty Pop, the bar’s sexy signature Saturday night dance party.
toucanstikilounge.com

toucansbarpalmsprings

PHOTOGRAPH BY JIM POWERS

Trunks Bar Cathedral City

36737 Cathedral Canyon Drive, Cathedral City
Yee haw! Described as the bar where “the spirits are high and the prices are low,” Trunks is perhaps most notable for offering country western dancing each Tuesday and Saturday.
trunkscacity.com

trunkscathedralcity

PHOTOGRAPH BY JIM POWERS