The nine resort communities two hours from Los Angeles making up Coachella Valley are collectively referred to as Greater Palm Springs and can show many faces depending on the needs of the group. From old Hollywood glam and modernist kitsch hunters to wellness seekers and art lovers, this is a destination that meets visitors where they want to be. My recent trip revealed new sides of this evolving oasis that seems to constantly invent new ways to delight.

Looking for a starting point? The new Agua Caliente Cultural Plaza taking shape downtown just opened The Spa at Séc-he, a resource Director of Spa Daniel Spencer told me is “the only wellness destination of its kind” and a way for groups looking to connect to the original tribal inhabitants and holistic relaxation. The 73,000 sq. ft. spa complex boasts 22 private mineral baths for traditional “taking of the waters” rituals, halotherapy salt caves and Málmal Café. Spencer also manages the tribe’s Agua Caliente Resort Casino Sunstone Spa (340 guest rooms and 131,776 sq. ft. of meeting space in a separate conference center wing), which has made a name for itself with “holistically indulgent” treatments.

Stay Here

meeting room in hotel
Margaritaville Palm Springs

The home of Hollywood glam has to be La Quinta Resort & Club, Curio Collection by Hilton. The 1920s California Mission-style property has hosted celebrities Greta Garbo, Ginger Rogers and Merv Griffin back in the day. Now, the sprawling 781-guest room white stucco and red tile-roof campus boasts 45,000 sq. ft. of meeting space and endless possibilities for outdoor interpretations of what a relaxed meeting means to you.

Calling all foodies. At Renaissance Esmerelda Resort & Spa Indian Wells, culinary experiences are a click away. From Fireside charcuterie and wine pairings to sushi and sake, bookable experiences are an easy way to enhance a stay at the 560-guest room property centered around a pool refuge with a sandy beach side and 213,000 sq. ft. of meeting space. A new Olive Grove outdoor area is a dramatic way to customize a gathering.

The classic Riviera Hotel recently transformed into the bright, fun Margaritaville Palm Springs with two pool decks, 398 sunny guest rooms and a dedicated conference center with 40,000 sq. ft. of meeting space surrounded by outdoor spots for meals, receptions and fun team-building options. If your group is looking for time spent in an Adirondack chair with a frosty beverage, consider parking them somewhere in the vicinity of the 5 o’Clock Somewhere Bar.

Do This

For the creative crowd, Palm Springs Art Museum continues the indoor-outdoor theme with larger-than-life exhibits steps from downtown Palm Springs.

Tracy Turco’s Modernism Museum is an immersive dive into the mid-century vibe that put Palm Springs on the map. The entire Insta-worthy facility, including the disco-rink is available for buyouts.

Got a sporty group? The new Acrisure Arena built for the NHL Coachella Valley Firebirds, is a fun venue on non-game days with room for up to 11,000.

Savor This

Whether contracting for catering, dining inside or on the patio of the homage to minimalism in the Uptown Design District, Eith4Nine Restaurant & Lounge sets the stage for world-class cuisine.

strawberries and french toast
Food at Eight4Nine
Restaurant & Lounge

This article appears in the May/June 2023 issue. You can subscribe to the magazine here.