Tuesday, June 14, 2011

life on the riviera

a few months ago bobby got a call from someone he used to work with who is now a professor for the mfa (master of fine arts) program at a uc school.  he asked bobby to teach his film business lecture at a workshop in palm springs.  they  took care of the hotel room, and his meals and the best part, he could bring us along.  are you kidding me?  we were able to work out the schedule so that we went right after school was out.  perfect.

we stayed at the riviera resort.  let me tell you something about the hotel.  it was gorgeous!  from the moment we walked in my camera and i were in love.

loved the colors


light fixtures

the pool

not really kid friendly but there we were.

bobby had to get on a conference call right away and we were hungry.  the kids and i took a little tour of the hotel.

then we went into town to get a bite to eat.  a friend of mine suggested a couple of places and we found  tyler's. that was that.  a little hamburger stand was perfect.  unfortunately, i don't eat meat so a hamburger, although appetizing, was out of the question.  i ended up getting a boring turkey sandwich. it was a good sandwich, but not very exciting.

the kids wanted to get back to the hotel and jump in the pool.  perfect timing that bobby was done as soon as we got into our swimsuits.
this hotel has two pools.  the big one in the main part of the hotel.  and the little one, perfect for a family with small kids and a growing boy that does not need the distraction of girls in bikinis 2 sizes too small.  no not us.  we liked our shallow, g-rated pool.  but man was it hot!  we stayed in for a few hours and then went back to the room to get ready for dinner.

at lunch the kids spotted a pizza place right across the street that they wanted to try.  now i do some, a lot,  an obsessive amount of research on places to eat when we go to a new city. i have to be honest, it is the highlight of a vacation for me to eat at a good restaurant.  i read reviews, ask people i know and go with my instinct on this.  bobby plans the adventures, i make sure we get some good food.

so when the boys insisted on this place i was a bit apprehensive.  would i have time to do some research on my iphone? was this place any good?   we drove into town and the streets were blocked off for a street fair. it was tough getting a parking spot.  a few times around the block, on one way streets mind you, and i was ready to hit the ihop we had seen by the hotel.  (side note:  ok i know ihop isn't exactly good food, or unique to palm springs.  but at least i am familiar with their menu and they had parking!)  but right when i was about to give up, i found a spot...on a very rainbow filled street, with lots of boys and bars.  no one but me noticed as we walked on by.

the restaurant had this sign up front.
bold statement, i know.   i ordered a pepperoni pizza and the cranberry and feta salad.  and it was amazing.  their crust is sourdough, on the crispier side.  not too much cheese. a slightly sweeter tomato sauce, but i let that slide because the crust was so good.  best pizza, nah but pretty darn good.
after dinner we walked to the street fair.  a guy had set up 2 telescopes to look at the moon.  we smelled the fresh kettle corn, but resisted and tried to stay together in the crowd.
after his meetings, bobby took a taxi to join us. he did not resist the kettle corn.  and we got to see saturn through the telescope.

the next day the kids, and i, got a treat.  we ordered room service. the kids menu was not unreasonable and i just ordered some fruit.  for what it would have taken to get everyone dressed, in the car and seated at a restaurant, it was well worth the price.

then we said goodbye to bobby and went back to the pool.  since it was friday and people were checking in for the weekend, the pool got a little more crowded by lunch time.  we grabbed some food at the hut and went back to the room, where bobby joined us.

in the afternoon we took the kids to the aerial tram.  i figured it was gong to be colder at the higher elevation, so i made everyone change into jeans and bring along sweatshirts, even though it was 98 degrees outside.
once we got there it wasn't as cold as i had thought.  we took a short hike around the park looking at the wildlife.  the boys were trying to spot some of the animals they saw on their hikes in science camp.

dinner was at circa 59 right at the hotel.  we sat outside by the pool and it was so beautiful.  so many cool little details.  dinner was good.  the kids were not fans of the truffle french fries.  can't say i was either.
at dinner we sat with bobby's professor friend, his 13 year old daughter and 2 of her 13 year old friends.  they were cracking us up trying to strike up conversations with the boys.  one of them recited the plot of twelfth night as told in an amanda bynes movie.  jordan was drawing and they were making requests.  after dinner and before dessert, the girls wanted to go for a walk.  they invited the boys along, who declined, to no one's surprise.  when the girls walked away, jordan said under his breath, "ahh, it's so quiet."
saturday, we checked out early so we could get to the living dessert before they closed.  the kids really wanted to see the camels, the foxes, and the jaguar.  we saw birds, giraffes, and ostrich too.
at 1:30 we headed home, happy and tan.

it sounds like bobby is going to be a regular lecturer for this program.  that means more visits to palm springs.  i think next time we'll do it on our own and take advantage of the spa and other hotel amenities.

what a great start to our summer.

1 comment:

Mackenzie said...

Glad you guys had fun! Looks like a great trip!