Palm Desert is a city in Riverside County, California, United States, in the Coachella Valley, approximately 14 miles (23 km) east of Palm Springs and 122 miles (196 km) east of Los Angeles. The population was 48,445 at the 2010 census, up from 41,155 at the 2000 census. The city was one of the state’s fastest growing in the 1980s and 1990s, beginning with 11,801 residents in 1980, doubling to 23,650 in 1990, 35,000 in 1995, and nearly double its 1990 population by 2000.
With year-round sunny skies and mid-80s temps, southern California’s Palm Desert makes for a great mid-winter escape. El Paseo, the town’s main thoroughfare, is loaded with upscale shops and art galleries, earning it the nickname “Rodeo Drive of the desert.” There hasn’t been a new luxury hotel in Palm Desert in over 30 years, but that’s about to change with the opening of Hotel Paseo, whose highlights include a backyard with a pool and Bocce Ball, an on-site spa, and a Billiards Suite complete with its own billiards table.
The first residential development occurred in 1943 in connection with an Army maintenance camp in the area. That site was later developed into “El Paseo“, an upscale shopping district not unlike Rodeo Drive. In 1948, the Palm Desert Corporation began to develop real estate, and in 1951 the area was given its present name.