A throwback to tennis and racquet clubs that flourished in Palm Springs in the 50s and 60s, Sands Hotel & Spa's Insta-worthy decor is reason enough to swing by—and if you need an excuse to visit, head to The Pink Cabana, the hotel’s on-site restaurant. Serving up a fresh take on Mediterranean cuisine with bold Moroccan flavors, menu highlights include a lamb shank tagine, harissa chicken, and a shareable mezze platter. Don't skip out on the Mediterranean wines and refreshing seasonal cocktails as you take a break from the desert’s oppressive heat.
Looking for Italian food in an oh-so-coveted al fresco setting? There’s no better spot than Birba, a modern eatery that serves pastas, pizzas, and creative cocktails beneath a flowering tree with romantic string lights. Though it’s the ideal outdoor dinner date spot in Palm Springs, Birba’s friendly staff and breezy ambiance make it a great choice for family-friendly dining as well, no matter the weather (the fire pit at the center of the courtyard makes for an especially cozy night). The most popular dish, Nonna’s Meatballs, is a must-order in our book, but Birba has options for everyone’s dietary needs (including cauliflower or gluten-free crust for the pizzas) and a menu that changes every few months to keep you on your toes.
This beloved Vietnamese American spot takes no reservations and almost always draws a crowd. It’s worth the wait, though, for snacky small plates (like crispy wood ear mushroom spring rolls) and shareables (like lemongrass pork and shrimp rice noodles) that rotate to keep things fresh. As for refreshments, cool down in the desert heat with Vietnamese iced coffee, fruit-forward cocktails, and sparkling wines.
Engin Onural, the restaurant’s chef and owner, blends traditional Japanese technique with modern global touches. The result is one of Palm Springs’ hottest—and most genre-bending—dining spots. Sashimi, carpaccios, and seasonal goods (shoutout to Sandfish’s stuffed zucchini blossoms) take the form of tostadas, aguachiles, or sushi, and are best enjoyed with cocktails flecked with desert-foraged herbs. Looking for something a little more straightforward? There are classic hand rolls and nigiri, not to mention one of the area’s best whiskey collections.
No one in Palm Springs does Modern American cuisine more beautifully—or in a more stylish setting—than 4 Saints. This seventh-floor rooftop restaurant, located at the Kimpton Rowan Hotel, has a sleek and sultry dining room coupled with incredible mountain views and a show-stopping patio. The menu is a mix of small plates, entrees, and grilled meat that highlight California ingredients—standout dishes include roasted beets with pistachio butter, charred maitake mushrooms with grits, and their 14-day dry-aged steaks. For those who like sauce with their steaks, the house-made mushroom au poivre should not be missed.