Palm Springs, Oasis in the middle of the desert

I have a full time job in the corporate world and only have 3 weeks of vacation per year available to me, this makes it incredibly challenging and frustrating to fulfill my travel obsession, so I make sure my time off does not go unused, I maximize my time off by using weekends and holidays and this way get the maximum time off I can.

I enjoy going to places I have never been, and I choose my travel locations based on days available and proximity, recently I traveled to Palm Springs, CA, I chose this place because first of all I have never been there, second of all it was close enough to make it a quick getaway even with no direct flights from Portland, OR.

My flight was scheduled to leave Portland, OR at 5:15 am, unfortunately the flight was delayed 4 hours because neither American Airlines nor PDX airport where ready for the weather that morning and they failed to be prepared with de-icing fluid causing this delay and causing us to miss our connecting flight in Phoenix, AZ.

Finally we touched down in Palm Springs 4 hours late, but I was determined not to let this little airline setback damp my spirit.

Palm springs welcomed me with 80 degree weather and immediately I knew I was in paradise, first thing I did was drive to the hotel to check in, unpack and freshen up before exploring.

I did not know much about Palm Springs other than that it was a ritzy play ground where the stars like Frank Sinatra and Bob Hope used to live and play, in addition to still having an air of the 1960’s, including charming architecture.

At first glimpse Palm Springs reminded me of Phoenix, AZ, even reminded me of parts of the middle east, more specifically, Egypt and the Sinai peninsula, yellow rock mountains that mingle within the dessert, next to palms, cactus and patches of green in every front yard that make you wonder how so much beauty can exist with so little water.

As you drive along highway 10 east or west, marvel at the windmill farms, as they are not only useful for the environment, they are sight to be enjoyed as they churn the air in unison almost hypnotically along the highway.

Things to do:

Palm Springs aerial tramway: for the experience and the views

Palm Springs Art Museum: small but worth it if you like corky art, especially if you are women and are in to heels, go check out the Killer Heels exhibition, ladies, it’s to die for!

El Paseo shops, think Rodeo Drive, just fab!

Palm Springs downtown: shop, eat and see the walk of stars

About my stay: We stayed at the Westin Mission Hills in Rancho Mirage, the room we stayed in was outdated; parts of the roof were too low, especially the bathroom, made it feel small, the bathroom shower head was dirty and full of soap scum. our room did not have a microwave and we needed to heat something, my mom went to one of the restaurants in the resort to ask to have her food heated and she was told NO, that we could request a microwave to be brought into our room for a $10 charge but they could be liable if she got sick for heating up her food!!!! SERIOUSLY?

We also used the Spa services to have a massage and even though my mom and I had the same treatment, we both had very different experiences, we both had the relaxation massage with scalp massage for 55 minutes, my therapist did not know what I had scheduled and kept trying to sell me services and products I was not interested in, including, trying to charge me $10 for having her use one of the 3 essential oils available (my mom was asked which one she wanted used on her, not charged $10 and did not get the scalp massage). I also did not get the scalp massage, as a few fingers running thru my scalp one time do not a scalp massage make, needless to say, I was not impressed with the Spa, or the quality of room we had.

In the end, Palm Springs is a beautiful oasis in the middle of the desert and I would love to go back again.

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