Travel » Features

Romance Week: The Touch, the Feel of Palm Springs

by Kelsy Chauvin
EDGE Media Network Contributor
Monday Mar 10, 2014

This article is from the July 2014 issue of EDGE Digital Magazine.

Same-sex marriage bells are ringing in a growing number of U.S. states and forward-thinking countries. But where should queers-in-the-know head for forthcoming nuptials or fabulously memorable honeymoons? EDGE suggests letting your five senses make the call.

Few cities can boast the refreshing comfort of sunny Southern California like Palm Springs. With built-in romance thanks to its swaying palm trees, blue skies and warm breezes, the appeal becomes only more enticing knowing how incredibly gay-friendly the city really is.

Few cities go out of their way to welcome gay grooms and brides more than Palm Springs. The city's tourism bureau, through its Palm Springs Weddings website, makes it easy to find perfect venues, caterers, florists and tips for everything else you'll need to get hitched -- right down to the city clerk's marriage-license application page. Though it may seem like a small gesture, a city that displays pictures of amorous same-sex couples throughout its Web pages gets extra points for joyful hospitality.

Palm Springs Essentials

Now that you’ve tied the knot (and are tied down), a flirtatious Dinah Shore weekend of clothing-optional same-sex resorts may be off the table. Consider grabbing your spouse and heading out for some scenic desert hiking or biking, or hitting the links at a perfectly landscaped golf course. New in 2014, Desert Adventures has launched the "Gay Icons of Palm Springs" tour, where you can check out the mid-century homes of gay icons and hear stories about the city’s storied LGBT history.

With a welcome abundance of proud LGBT-friendly accommodations, newlyweds must first decide on their priorities: resort or hotel, shady gardens or sleek modernist style? Perhaps you’d prefer a men-only or women-only resort. The local standout is the Ace Hotel, which transformed the old Howard Johnson into a fashion-forward yet retro-modern treasure. It’s got a spa, bike rentals, a chilled swimming pool, locally made and vintage decor, and all kinds of fun on-site events from top-DJ parties to weekly Sissy Bingo led by Linda Gerard, a self-proclaimed OWL (older, wiser lesbian).

Most Romantic Move:
Rediscover your youth with the couple’s package at the Ace’s Feel Good Spa, where together you can experience seaweed body wraps, side-by-side Swedish massage and detoxifying facials.

Pairs Well With:
Los Angeles is just a two-hour drive away through the rugged San Jacinto Mountains. There has never been a better excuse than this drive to rent a convertible, sport some sexy shades and cruise through the warm desert air. If you start in L.A., Palm Springs is the perfect respite where you can unwind poolside. Heading westward from Palm Springs, enjoy easing back into the cosmopolitan glamour of La-La Land.

Click and Go

Visit Palms Springs

Palms Springs Pride

The LGBT Community Center of the Desert

Palm Springs Weddings

Desert Adventures

Kelsy Chauvin is a writer, photographer and marketing consultant based in Brooklyn, New York. She specializes in travel, feature journalism, art, theater, architecture, construction and LGBT interests. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter at @kelsycc.


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