Palm Springs is a popular weekend getaway, as its mild winters offer a reprieve from snowier climates. The nightlife scene is appealing, whether you’re looking for a casual dive, an old-school supper club, or an LGBTQ club. Here are 10 great Palm Springs watering holes.
Truss & Twine
Cocktail Bar, Contemporary, Pub Grub, American, $$$
Truss & Twine opened in 2017, and though it’s one of Palm Springs’ more recent cocktail additions, it’s also one of the best. The sleek industrial space is a fun place to gather with friends, and their cocktail menu playfully takes guests through five eras of libations: the Golden Age, Prohibition, Tiki, Dark Ages, and Originals. While the drinks are a true delight, you’d be remiss to overlook the “bar bites” menu. The smoked trout rillettes and uni deviled eggs are divine. If you’re really looking to splurge, you can’t go wrong with their version of a seafood hot dog: spot prawn, served with seaweed and uni mayo on a brioche bun.
Seymour’s is craft cocktail hideaway located within Mr. Lyons Steakhouse. Beer and wine are available, though it’s the perfect place to nurse a delicious and thoughtfully made cocktail, be it a classic or one of their originals. Their Pineapple Tequila Sour—made with tequila, pineapple gomme, lemon and egg white—is refreshing. The Little Owl is also a stiffer treat, with Rittenhouse Rye Whiskey, walnut liqueur, IRA syrup, and Angostura Amaro.
El Jefe is located inside The Saguaro hotel. They serve a variety of Mexican fare, including tacos and tortas. Their cocktail menu consists of several types of margarita, including the refreshing jalapeno celery, as well as original creations. It’s a laid-back, youthful spot that attracts both locals and hotel guests.
Bootlegger Tiki hasn’t been around for as long as Palm Springs’ Tonga Hut, as it only opened in 2014, but it is in the former home of tiki outpost Don the Beachcomber. The bar itself is cozy and bathed in red light, and it excels in creative, balanced tiki cocktails that aren’t too sweet. It shares a building and a restroom with Ernest Coffee Co., which is a great place to get caffeinated the day after your tiki adventure.
Melvyn’s has been around since the 1970s, next to the historic Ingleside Inn. Named after its popular late owner, Melvyn Haber, it’s an old-fashioned joint with a lot of history. It’s known for attracting celebrity clientele, including Frank Sinatra, artist Salvador Dali, and Goldie Hawn. It’s also one of only a handful of restaurants that has had several employees on the payroll for decades. Stop by for a meal or drinks, and perhaps you’ll be lucky enough to grab the bar seat that was Ol’ Blue Eyes’ favorite.
Yes, it’s a bar called Bar. As underwhelming (or direct) as the name may be, there’s a lot going on at this friendly neighborhood watering hole. They serve pizza and bar fare, and have an extensive whiskey list. They’ve also got a solid list of craft beers and a host of cocktails, many of them classics. A spacious outdoor patio with a ping-pong table makes this a great spot for late-night hangs with friends.
Dead or Alive offers a meticulously curated selection of beer and wine. The menu only offers about five red, five white, and a handful of sparking and rose wines, plus a dozen or so craft and bottled beers, but each has been selected with care. It’s a relatively small, dark, low-key place with a patio that’s excellent for date night.
Find this bar inside The Ace. A large bear lurks behind the bar, but don’t worry, it’s oddly comforting. They have 21 taps serving craft beer, plus signature cocktails, and entertainment including DJs, comedy, and karaoke.
The Purple Room is a classic supper club, where guests can enjoy dinner and show—often jazz or comedy—with classic cocktails or wine. Jazz plays on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, while national performers drop by on Fridays and Saturdays. On Sundays, owner Michael Holmes presents The Judy Show, in which he plays every character in a parody of the Judy Garland Show. Reservations are recommended, and you’ll need a ticket for the weekend shows.