As the Coachella Valley has grown, LGBT visitors have become welcome in all nine cities of Greater Palm Springs. It has given birth to more nightlife options from one-off “gay nights” and drag shows to a new generation of LGBT-owned businesses that welcome all.
Here’s a look at your best options for enjoying a night “out.”
Playoffs Sports Bar | Desert Hot Springs
Playoffs has a popular rainbow night on the last Wednesday of the month. Their signature monthly night draws drag queens who come to hone their skills before moving on to larger venues in Palm Springs.
The Hood Bar and Pizza | Palm Desert
Down valley in Palm Desert, Brad Guth has created a signature drag Bingo night each Tuesday at The Hood Bar & Pizza. While most nights feature live entertainment or DJs, The Hood also has monthly drag shows with a revolving cast of local drag queens.
The Barracks | Cathedral City
The Barracks is a rough and tumble leather/Levi’s bar with a Sunday beer bust and many leather events, including a leather karaoke night on Mondays.
Trunks Bar | Cathedral City
You may recognize the name Trunks Bar as a West Hollywood stalwart. Now, the former DIGS Bar has been revamped to Trunks Cathedral City. It has kept its popular country line dancing night, plus added tango and other dance nights as well. Sunday’s beer bust is worth checking out. Happy hour is weekdays from 10 AM to 6 PM.
The Roost Lounge | Cathedral City
The Roost Lounge features live music, a patio and DJs on weekends for dancing. The lounge has an outdoor patio area as well as many nearby restaurants.
Studio One 11 | Cathedral City
A mostly local hangout is Studio One 11. While catering to an older crowd, the bar is known for cabaret-style entertainment and karaoke.
Toucan’s Tiki Lounge | Palm Springs
In north Palm Springs, Toucan’s remains a top gathering spot. It has a drag show like none other with two Sunday evening performances. Toucan’s dance floor is intimate and the bar recently underwent a renovation by local designer Christopher Kennedy.
Streetbar | Palm Springs
Arenas Road in downtown Palm Springs is the gay gathering spot in the valley. The block-long stretch of buildings house many businesses catering to the LGBT communities. The oldest bar on the street, the aptly named Streetbar, set the stage as the first “gay-owned” gathering spot in Palm Springs over 25 years ago. Today, it is more popular than ever—especially with the 50+ crowd and their admirers.
Stacy’s @ Palm Springs | Palm Springs
Next door is the newest entry on Arenas: Stacy’s @ Palm Springs. It will be Arenas Road’s first piano bar in a very intimate setting. Stacy’s @ Melrose in Phoenix is its sister bar. The grand opening is set for October 6th.
Blackbook | Palm Springs
Also new on the street is Blackbook serving lunch and dinner into the wee hours. The open space and ample tables provide a great gathering spot for cocktails and a meal.
Chill Bar and Scorpion Room | Palm Springs
Chill Bar Palm Springs and Scorpion Room have become one of the top destinations in just three short years on Arenas Road. The front bar (Chill) opens midday and has comfortable seating against one wall to provide a great vantage point to see the comings and goings of the bar. Scorpion Room comes alive at night with DJs, dancing and special events like the popular Sunday FunDay.
Hunters Nightclub | Palm Springs
Hunters Nightclub is celebrating 19 years as a top dance club with multiple TV screens where sporting events are also shown. The bar is also known for karaoke, large special events and a separate dance floor and bar. Daily Happy hour starts at 10AM.
QuadZ | Palm Springs
If Broadway show tunes float your boat, then QuadZ is the bar for you and your friends. You may note a nod to Chicago’s Sidetrack bar in their video programming – the owner formerly worked there and took a few cues.