April 1, 2019
Happy April 1st...and NO, I am, definitely, NOT fooling you! ;) And, even bigger than April 1st, Happy 5th Birthday to 2 Health Nuts! You know, just 2 girl bosses who are kicking ass in the health and wellness world!
These past few days have been a whirlwind since I touched down in Baltimore on Friday afternoon. As I had been filling you in, I had the opportunity to spend last week in BEAUTIFUL Palm Springs, California for a 5 day conference that was filled with influencers, bloggers, and entrepreneurs from around the world. A first of its kind for me; I am used to conferences that are geared towards the fitness, nutrition, and business aspect. Actually, there were many firsts for me this trip.
My luggage did not make my connecting flight from Phoenix last Sunday, so I made my 1st impression in the clothes I had been flying in all day. I know, so freaking bougie. When I asked my Lyft driver (who kind of became my private driver for the week) as to where the best places for a good smoothie or acai bowl, he insisted I check out this local place that has the best all natural smoothies/products. No wonder their smoothies are so popular - who the heck puts ice cream in a "health" smoothie? AND, to top it all off, I had a minor touch of food poisoning Thursday night into Friday morning. Yes, the same day I was traveling, and one of my biggest fears ever! Luckily, I was "okay," but this whole nausea thing has been kicking my butt all weekend.
In true Janine fashion, though, I have not let it stop me from doing what has to be done. I mean, this train has to keep on rolling!
Back to my stay in Palm Springs. I say this about a lot of the places that I go to BUT I, seriously, cannot wait to back. While my time was spent doing (mostly) work, I did manage to get some time to "play" and do a little sightseeing. A 2nd trip is, definitely, needed to give you the full Palm Springs/Palm Desert experience. Oh, and of course more selfie pictures like this one!
Although I paid almost triple for a ticket price to the Summit due to booking a month out, it was kind of a blessing in disguise with what hotels still had availability. I knew when I saw that The Parker Palm Springs Hotel had some room blocks left, this was going to be so Fit4Janine! Little did I know, this is the place where all the celebrities stay (of course it is) AND, just the weekend before, Amazon CEO, Jeff Bezos, held a conference for brilliant minds too.
One of the best ways to describe this hotel is, actually, something I overheard a hotel guest saying to their significant other - "It's like you are in a scene from Alice & Wonderland."
"Sense of place is shaped by walking these thirteen acres of planted paths beneath arches of green, through tunnels of hedgegrow that periodically open up to the spread of a lawn, the shade of a tree, a cluster of tall pampas grass, or a court of palms."
The hotel consists of 13 acres, 144 rooms, 12 villas, 225 palm trees, 6 fountains, 15 lemon trees, 18 orange trees, 10 grapefruit trees, and 1 garden-to-table organic herb garden. And the smell of honeysuckle across the property, definitely, was a throwback to my childhood days, where it seemed to be in abundance in the neighborhood where I grew up!
I wonder what their landscaping bill must be like?
Upon entering the property, you weave your way through those "gorgeous tunnels of hedgegrow" and are greeted by handsome men in white polos and salmon colored khaki's.
Two strikingly BRIGHT orange doors, that seemed to be sky high, and adorned with ornate, gold handles, made you feel like you were stepping back in time and wondering what you would find on the other side. In my case, maybe a Tory Burch store - ha.
Think "Great Gatsby" meets modern day decor, but then throws you for a curve ball when the lounge area is reminiscent of a resort you would see in Arizona!
Did I also mention that the hotel has 3 saline pools, 4 clay tennis courts, 2 Petanque courts (I had to look this up), 1 croquet lawn, a 17,000 square foot spa (I wish I had utilized this more), 1 putting green, 1 fire pit, hammocks, bicycles, table tennis, giant chess, golf, and hiking!
After a long day of travel, and very little food, I made my way to Norma's - a restaurant where I frequented the most - for a fabulous "Charlie Cobb Salad" and a glass of "Whispering Angel Rose" while I waited for my room and non-existent bag to arrive (ha!). Seriously, I got over that quickly; I mean, what are you going to do?
Apparently, "Norma" put down roots in New York City before opening up the 2nd location at The Parker Hotel in Palm Springs. I frequented this establishment on the regular for breakfast, brunch, and even a dinner, with every meal being better than the next, and every Cobb Salad I ordered throwing them for even more of a "here is your salad with a whole lot of substitutions." I am really not that bad - I promise.
This open air terrace, filled with colors of yellow, orange, tans, greens, and even blues, gives diners the ability to have breakfast ANY time of the day. While their omelets were fantastic, if you wanted to be really naughty, their waffles, pancakes, and French toast would make Julia Child's cry; I mean "If you are afraid of butter, then use cream." Right?
This comfortable, and low key environment, turns super cozy and discreet at night; the perfect place for a romantic date night or, for me, a "table for one."
Upon finishing my meal, I received a text indicating that my accommodations were ready! As the super sweet bell hop opened up the door to my room ("40 S"), I almost said, "are you sure this is mine?!?!"
It was FABULOUS! While there are different levels of rooms, and both a "North" and a "South" division of the hotel, this eclectic "Estate" room came with a beautiful King-sized poster bed, 2 sitting areas, a large closet, dresser, desk, and huge bathroom with a "floor to ceiling" mirror. Speaking of "floor to ceiling," the adjoined patio could be masked by the gorgeous shutters that let in the perfect amount of light during the day, and then the demand for privacy at night! ;) I really don't know why I felt compelled to put a "wink" smiley face at the end of that sentence...
It, usually, takes me a few nights to start getting some "decent" sleep but all I have to say is that it was very easy to sink right under those king sized sheets after longs days of social media overload.
Two additional restaurants I had the chance to try at the hotel during my stay included "Mister Parker's" & "Counter Reformation," as well as their super chic "mini bar" & lounge. Both restaurants were great places to catch up and network with fellow attendees, and the lounge was a nice change of scenery from my hotel room to take my computer and #gsd. I found myself in the lobby lounge a lot; a perfect place for a cocktail and a mezze platter or cheese board. Plus, what was so cool is that you could be in one room that made you feel like you were in Arizona, or Tahoe, or, possibly, a ski lodge in Aspen, to another room in which the bar was flanked in gold and the walls were tufted in the most unusual color blue!
Also, their fantastic adults only "Lemonade Stand" was a great place for poolside concoctions and, one day, even a little computer work too. More on that momentarily.
If you are looking for a hearty meal, "Mister Parker's" is the place to go - everything from steaks to seafood, with a la carte side items, are on the menu. Plus, if you are in to the rich purple upholstery, and white baby grand pianos, this is for you! I wish my pictures had turned out a little better. If cheese and charcuterie are more your speed, as well intriguing champagne and wine varietals, Counter Reformation should be your "go-to!" And, literally, you sit up at the counter!
Needless to say, I, definitely, have a new drink, courtesy of the Lemonade Stand - fresh muddled lemon with lemon vodka, a splash of limoncello, and topped with club soda (or lemon La Croix)! #yassss I mean, how freaking cute is THIS spot?!?!
Oh, Palm Springs, you have my heart! What an amazing time I had at such a beautiful resort! I cannot wait to come back and check out all this fabulous city has to offer - from the food, to the shopping, to all the activities, etc.!
And, if you have the opportunity to stay at this resort, make sure you do so!!! Tell them Janine sent you...I really want to hear how they respond! LOL!
Until next time...