Living in Palm Springs, CA – 11 Things to Love and 4 to Not

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|5 min read

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Palm Springs, California, is known as a resort city with a luxurious and laid-back lifestyle. The Palm Springs area has long been a destination location and second home/vacation destination for people all over the world. As its popularity has grown, more people are finding that living in Palm Springs full-time allows a life of natural beauty and high-end experiences.

Furthermore, beyond the immediate city of Palm Springs, the greater Palm Springs area, which includes Cathedral City, Desert Hot Springs, Palm Desert, Indio, Bermuda Dunes, La Quinta, Indian Wells, and Rancho Mirage, offers residents even more options for activities and enjoyment in palm desert.

Additionally, the local economy and housing market are thriving and will continue to thrive in the future. Living in Palm Springs provides a wonderful community, activities, and amenities, along with sunshine and warmth. Yet, before you pack your bags and prepare for a move, it’s important to note the drawbacks of any area, including Palm Springs.

Let’s dive in and explore all that Palm Springs offers.

11 Things to Love About Living in Palm Springs , CA. 

1. Ease of Life

Palm Springs is known as a desirable location for a vacation home because of its ease of living. When you live in the Palm Springs, CA area, life is pretty consistent and easy. Palm Springs offers all the amenities of a resort city, and tourism is a primary economic driver; therefore, you can expect to receive high-quality services anywhere you go.

Yet, don’t expect the hype that often comes with tourism. Palm Springs is known for its laid-back atmosphere. There’s a slow pace of life, and people clearly enjoy living in Palm Springs.

Furthermore, there are rarely traffic issues. Sure there are occasional road construction projects and delays, however, overall the daily life and living in Palm Springs is easy and is a great place to live.


2. Shopping and Restaurants

Palm Springs is filled with incredible dining and awesome shopping. Whether you’re looking for laid-back or high-end, you can find it in Palm Springs.This includes both larger chain brands and boutique local businesses. Locals love the ease of being able to find everything you need within a close drive. 

While the summers can be hot, there’s beautiful outdoor dining where friends can talk and take in the beauty of Palm Springs. The unique neighborhoods of Palm Springs also bring a different vibe and amenities.

From young professionals to retirees, there are options that can please everyone.


3. Culture and Art

From the Palm Springs International Film Festival to the world-class museums, Palm Springs has a thriving art and culture scene. If you’re looking to see a piece of WWII history, the Palm Springs Air Museum has an incredible collection of aircraft used during the war.

Beyond the festivals and museums, each of the different cities in the Coachella Valley showcases something that is unique and amazing. 

4. Leisure Activities

Swimming, mineral water spas in DHS, and many hiking trails are just a few of the many things to do nearby. For those who love biking, there are plenty of incredible parks, like Joshua Tree National Park or Palm Canyon. And for those who prefer a spa day, the Ritz Carlton Rancho Mirage offers luxury treatments to relax the body and soul.

There is something for nearly everyone in the Palm Springs area.

This creates amazing opportunities for families looking to stick together for outings and fun. There is fishing nearby and other outdoor activities as well. 

5. Proximity

Mountains, snow, the beach, and many other things are all within a short drive from Palm Springs, CA.

Living in Palm Springs makes it very easy and convenient to make a day or weekend trip to suit your mental getaway needs. This can be great to accommodate the entire family over time. You can take a quick trip to the snow in Idyllwild and then continue on to the beach in San Diego. 

6. Traffic

As mentioned, there is rarely traffic in the area (especially in the summertime). Locals love this, and most of us take it for granted. While there is traffic when the music festival and other large events come to town, most days, you can get around with ease. 

7. Year Round Access

Sunshine does not cause many events to get canceled. Therefore, most things we have on the schedule go through. Because the weather is consistently sunny with warm temperatures, life and events are made for the warmth. Nothing shuts down or has a season, like skiing.

It is nice living in Southern California, and the overall weather is very enjoyable, and life is great here. In full disclosure, I have been living in the area since 2012 after moving from Phoenix, Arizona. 

8. A Retirement Destination

Living in Palm Springs, CA, is very well suited for retirees to enjoy their golden years. There are many 55+ communities that offer amenities desired by many retirees. The warm weather, slower pace, and ease of living in Palm Springs make it a wonderful environment.

Furthermore, medical services, including major hospitals and smaller centers, are readily available as well. Everything you can want and need as you enjoy your retirement years is at your fingertips in the Palm Springs area. 

9. Golf

The entire Coachella Valley is a mecca for golf. In fact, the area has over 100 golf courses ranging from the highest end of exclusive private membership courses to all-age public courses fitting varying skill sets.

If you enjoy golf, whether you’re a novice who casually plays or a pro, Palm Springs has some of the best golf in the world. 

10. Pickleball

The popularity of pickleball is creating a shift at many condo complexes throughout the Palm Springs, CA area. Pickleball is a sport that is growing very quickly in popularity across the nation. This is a growing community and is likely to continue to explode moving forward.

If you enjoy pickleball, I suggest looking at some of the exciting condo projects in Palm Springs offering groups and the ability to play right in your backyard. 

11. World Class Concerts and Sporting Events

The Coachella music festival, Indian Wells Tennis Garden, PGA Tour Golf tournament, HIIT Horse events, and Polo are some of the major events in the Coachella Valley. These events attract people from around the world to experience the event and a taste of Palm Springs.

Beyond these world class events, there are smaller events, live music, and fairs occurring most weeks throughout Palm Springs.

4 Drawbacks of Living in Palm Springs

1. The summer is HOT

Not warm, not a little hot…hot like fire…for months. In fact, in 2020, the local news reported 151 consecutive days at or above 100 degrees.

The first inhabitants of Palm Springs were the Cahuilla people, who named Palm Springs Se-Khi, which means boiling water. With no air conditioning, and the days upon days of intense heat, the name Se-Khi rings true.

Nevertheless, locals acclimate and spend most of their time indoors and in air conditioning during the heat of the day, especially in the summer months. Like many desert areas, most residents will enjoy outdoor activities in the early morning or late afternoon/evening.

2. Geography of the area is sparse

This is the desert, after all, and lush greenery is uncommon. There is not too much that grows with little water, low humidity and constant sun. Many types of plants and foliage will not do well here. This may not be the right climate if your green thumb requires tropical and easy plants.

However, there are native plants and species that grow, smattering the stark desert landscape with hints of green. Hiking in Joshua Tree National Park provides stunning rock formations and plants, including cacti and the Joshua tree.  

3. Specific Architecture

Palm Springs is known for its midcentury architecture. In fact, it stands as one of the most significant clusters of midcentury modern architecture.

The rest of Palm Springs is influenced by this style. Palm Springs offers many homeowners a more contemporary home build. Other styles include Mediterranean and ranch homes.

If you have a specific style and type of architecture that is not in the area, you may not be a fan of what the area offers on this front. Living in Palm Springs, CA, is ideal for those who enjoy the specific styles offered in Palm Springs and the surrounding area. 

4. Not Set up for heavy rain/storms

Light changes in weather can have an impact quickly. Palm Springs averages 350 days of sunshine every year. Therefore, Palm Springs knows how to deal with heat and sunshine, not rain.

Hurricane Hilary in 2023 showed us that additional preparation is needed when heavy rains hit the area. Flooding can occur quickly and wash over the main roadways if rain falls quickly. This can cause flooding and make certain areas unable to pass through. 

Final Thoughts

Palm Springs is an incredible place to live. The laid-back atmosphere combined with high-end, resort-like amenities provides a phenomenal lifestyle. Moreover, the outdoor activities allow you to experience nature’s beauty, whether that’s through hiking or golfing.

If you’re thinking of moving, reach out to a FastExpert real estate agent for help. Not only are the realtors the best of the bunch, but also you can read reviews and easily reach out to multiple agents to discover who is the best fit for you.

If you want to work with me, Mike Jeppson, I’d be happy to help you find a home here in Palm Springs.

Let’s find you the ideal home!

Mike Jeppson HomeSmart

Mike Jeppson is one of the Coachella Valley's most trusted brokers, counting among his associates and clients numerous business owners and distinguished community leaders. As the designated broker of HomeSmart in Palm Desert, CA, Mike oversees the daily operations and manages over 500 agents. A high touch broker known for his extensive market and contract knowledge, Mike aims to produce positive results and impact all of those he comes in contact with.

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