Top Picks for Thanksgiving Dinner in Palm Springs

woman in a red bathing suit and a chefs hat carving a turkey poolside

Poolside turkey carving in Palm Springs

If you are planning to be in Palm Springs for Thanksgiving and are looking to out for a delicious meal, you have picked the right town.  There are so many excellent restaurants here and to top it off, it will most likely be 70 to 80 degrees with zero percent humidity so chances are good that you can even dine outside in November.  When in Palm Springs, picture yourself poolside with a cocktail before and after dinner and you are good to go!  If you plan to be in town, you should make a restaurant reservation soon – some time slots have been filling up already! 

If you need a place to stay (to perhaps escape or have a little distance from family), we have a few rooms left at The Monkey Tree Hotel.  Our kitchenette rooms have a 24” stove top and oven and microwave just in case you decide to not got out and have your own “little” turkey dinner poolside!  And for a bit of extra room, our two specialty suites “The Apartment” and the “Jungle Room” each have a private backyard with dining table.

Here are my top 10 picks for local Palm Springs restaurants – along with addresses, phone numbers and their little blurb from Mr. Google.  (As a side note, although I have not personally had Thanksgiving dinner out – because we typically work here at the hotel, I have indeed eaten at all of these local restaurants and give a thumbs up to these selections.) 

woman with red hair wearing a purple dress holder a platter with a turkey on it

Wistfully dreaming of going out to a restaurant instead of cooking this bird at home.

Billy Reed’s Restaurant & Bar $$  Old-school spot serves ample portions of American chow amid quirky decor including a koi pond.  (My personal comment:  The Victorian decor is a little weird, yet “interesting”.  This is best place in town for PIE.  In fact, you may want to eat the pie first.  My favorites are boysenberry, chocolate fudge cake and the strawberry rhubarb.)  Address:  1800 N Palm Canyon Dr, Palm Springs, CA 92262; Phone:  760-325-1946

Eight4Nine $$  Contemporary eatery offering refined New American cuisine in a sleek setting with pops of color.  (My personal comment:  I have eaten here a dozen times and each time I have a new “favorite”.  I love the outdoor dining space and don’t forget to ask for the special “Monkey Tree cocktail”) Address:  849 North Palm Canyon; Phone: 760-325-8490

Rick’s Desert Grille $$  Cuban-inspired comfort eats, small plates & cocktails star at this roomy, casual bar & grill.  (My personal comment:  big portions, you will probably have enough for seconds the next day!)  Address:  1596 North Palm Canyon; Phone:  760-325-2127

Trio $$ Solid American cuisine & specialty cocktails are served in a lively modern space with a patio.  (My personal comment:  their tag line is:  “where Palm Springs eats” and this is true!  According to my son, the best mac and cheese ever – and he is an expert!  If this is not part of the menu, ask for side order!)  The famous Shag store is right next door.  Check in out on your after dinner walk.)  Address:  707 North Palm Canyon; Phone:  760-864-8746

Spencer’s $$$  Set in the San Jacinto Mountains, this elegant spot serves upscale fare with occasional piano music.  (My personal comment:  This place is so classy and old school, yes, only valet parking.  I love the outdoor dining space.  If allowed, ask if you can see their famous swimming pool.  It’s beautiful!)  Address:  701 W. Baristo Road; Phone:  760-327-3446

Mr. Lyons Steakhouse $$$  Upscale, retro-style spot serving hand-cut meats, steakhouse staples & classic cocktails.  (My personal comment:  don’t forget to check out their speak-easy bar for a pre-dinner -cocktail.  The little portrait sketches on the walls are the best!)  Address:  233 E. Palm Canyon; Phone: 760-327-1551

Zin’s American Bistro $$  Refined American comfort cuisine plus cheese plates & wine in an urbane atmosphere with a patio.  (My personal comment:  This is another place that I have dined at about a dozen times.  If the Zin bites are not part of the pre-fixe, order as an app – they are delicious!  I love sitting outside, great people watching in a bustling part of town.)  Address:  198 S. Palm Canyon; Phone:  760-322-6300

Lulu California Bistro $$  A vast, eclectic menu of American eats plus an all-day happy hour are presented in a modern setting.  (My personal comment:  This is the very first restaurant that we visited when we moved to Palm Springs and although it is mostly a tourist crowd, you can feel the Palm Springs festive spirit here.  Outdoor dining here is great too for people watching along Palm Canyon.)  Address:  200 S. Palm Canyon; Phone:  760-5858

The Tropicale $$  Festive eatery with neon-lit exterior & retro tropical interior features an eclectic menu & patio.  (My personal comment:  I love the retro design inside and the garden too for pre-dinner drinks.  Sometimes a drag queen is walking around and that’s fun too.)  Address:  330 E. Amado Road; Phone:  760-866-1952

The Steakhouse at Agua Caliente Casino  $$$ Bustling casino open 24/7 with a music venue, buffet restaurant, deli & steakhouse.  (My personal comment:  This is the one place that I have not experienced.  I tried once, but my sons who were not 21 at the time, were not allowed in because it is only accessible from the casino.  I’ve included it because lots of guests and friends say it is the best steak place.)  Address:  401 E. Amado; Phone:  888-999-1995

man and woman looking at a turkey in a pan that won't fit into their oven

Oh rats, this turkey won’t fit in our oven, let’s go out to eat!


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