Alright, in 8 minutes the place will have been in operation for one full day, so please take this post with a huge chunk of sea salt. That said, here is what I find –
It’s a definate soft opening, meaning no Palm Springs focused weekend plan or Grand schedule of anything, with exception of a quiet event last Thursday night that included luminaries such as Andy Dick & Carol Channing. If you don’t know by now; as long as Carol Channing is around – you bring Carol Channing. There is no arguement. You just bring Carol Channing. Other than that nada. Crickets come to mind.
The hotel gueslist this weekend is a cross sector of beautiful young things and the Over 40 crowd asking ourselves if there’s a quiet area anywhere in this venue. There are two – the valet parking area in driveway and your room.
Usually with Hospitality/Industry Openings there is a high energy among staff – overly done attention, too solicitious and frankly, a bit canned. Not here. In fact, it feels like someone’s backyard party. Sort of serve yourself. That is, if you had access to any of the four bars I counted between Lobby and pool area. This of course has its downside. No one has bothered to clear 7 out of 8 tables set between bar and pool. There is no system or timing standard in place for greeting, First Order, or checkbacks. Quite relaxed in a relaxing town.
Bright and new white and blue towels for the pool people. Lots of them. Colors so clean and bright you immediately take notice how it clashes with the beige/mauve hotel exterior Hard Rock didn’t bother to change from when it was the Zozo. Hey, they were in a hurry. They did alot already, besides, the deck chairs face the pool, don’t worry about old DNA behind you.
I’m looking for the leads. These are the management types at the front door, the walkers who make eye contact to let you know they see everything and are seriously looking out for you. The point of contacts that will keep you coming back to a place like this. None found here.
The Lobby bar is lovely, chic, comfortable, welcoming. The restaurant is going to be a busy room for sure.
My guest today, a rather well regarded musician, scoffs at the drum set display, calling it an atrocious layout. I wouldn’t know.
All in all, this is huge for Palm Springs and it’s going to set a new era in motion. La Plaza, Palm Canyon and even the gay gulch of Arenas Road is going to feel the powerful economic energy Hard Rock Hotel will be throwing off for sure.
Be patient. And smile. You’re in Palm Springs for heaven’s sake.