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Palm Springs See And Do

Architecture Tour
Palm Springs , California
www.psmodcom.com

Palm Springs is the epicenter of Space Age modernist (a.k.a. Googie) architecture from masters William Cody, Richard Neutra, John Lautner, and Albert Frey, many of whom were commissioned to design the millionaire homes of stars like Frank Sinatra when they settled in the desert during the 1930s and 1940s. The Palm Springs Modern Committee publishes a map and driving guide to 66 historic buildings. It's available for $5 at the Palm Springs Visitor Information Center (2901 N. Palm Canyon Drive; 760-778-8418; www.palm-springs.org). The map includes descriptions of the buildings and short biographies of the best-known local architects.

Golf Resorts

With streets named for Gerald Ford, Dinah Shore, and Bob Hope, you know the Coachella Valley is obsessed with golf. The city of Palm Desert is golf central: Classic Club hosts the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic each January, but novice players are equally at home. Instead of standard-issue palms, look for pine, olive, and pepperwood trees and flower beds lining the fairways. A 65,000-square-foot Tuscan-style clubhouse is due for completion in summer 2007 (75-200 Northstar Resort Pkwy.; 760-601-3600; www.classicclubgolf.com). Marriott's Shadow Ridge, designed by Nick Faldo (there's a Faldo Golf Institute on site), is playable for all levels, even if some of the bunkers are challenging (9200 Shadow Ridge Rd.; 760-674-2700; www.golfshadowridge.com). Nearby, Desert Willow receives raves for its two photogenic, environmentally friendly courses: The Mountain View course has wide fairways, while the tougher 7,056-yard Firecliff Course has more than 100 bunkers with dramatic desert landscaping (38-995 Desert Willow Dr.; 760-346-7060; www.desertwillow.com). Down valley, there's the Golf Resort at Indian Wells. The Celebrity Course opened November 2006, designed by Ryder Cup member Clive Clark. Rolling waters and wildflowers lend a botanical-garden look (44-500 Indian Wells La.; 800-874-8190; www.golfresortatindianwells.com). In La Quinta, the Arnold Palmer–designed SilverRock Resort has tees suitable for all levels of play. It's at the base of the majestic Santa Rosa Mountains, surrounded by 100 acres of natural desert landscape (79-179 Ahmanson La.; 888-600-7272; www.silverrock.org).

Guided Tours
Palm Springs , California
Tel: 760 416 7044

Five miles south of downtown are four palm-studded canyons, stewarded by the Agua Caliente Indians and listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Most popular are the 15-mile-long Palm Canyon (end of S. Palm Canyon Drive) and the sacred Tahquitz Canyon (500 W. Mesquite, just west of Palm Canyon Drive) with its 60-foot waterfall, rock art, and ancient irrigation systems. Both locations have free hiking maps and rangers available for guide tours at the canyon entrances ($8 for adults; an extra $3 per person to have a ranger show you the way).

Palm Springs Aerial Tramway
One Tramway Road
Palm Springs , California
92264
Tel: 760 325 1391
www.pstramway.com

This ten-minute cable-car ride takes you 8,800 feet up Mt. San Jacinto (the next 2,000 feet to the top are under your own steam). The ascent goes from sandy desert to alpine snowfields, with a 30-degree temperature drop. Stay for dinner at the fine-dining Peaks restaurant or casual Pines Café. Adults $22, tram only; $35 for the ride and dinner at Pines Café.

Palm Springs Celebrity Homes Tour
4751 E. Palm Canyon Drive
Palm Springs , California
92262
Tel: 760 770 2700
www.celebrity-tours.com

Check out how the other half lives on this witty tour past the homes of Bob Hope, Goldie Hawn, Elizabeth Taylor, Frank Sinatra, Liberace, Elvis, and Dean Martin. Tours range from one hour ($30) to two and a half hours ($35).

San Andreas Fault
555 S. Sunrise Way, Suite 200
Palm Springs , California
92264
Tel: 800 514 4866
www.elitelandtours.com

See what everyone's quivering and quaking about on this air-conditioned Hummer tour to the famous fissure and surrounding geological formations.

Information may have changed since the date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.