Ace Hotel Palm Springs

Panama Pandemonium

A few (five) years ago I went on a trip to Costa Rica and Panama.  For the Costa Rica leg, it turned out to be one of those trips where we just kind of missed the mark.  We didn't visit the right cities and didn't really get the experience that, after hearing of other people's trips to the land of Pura Vida, we wished we had done our trip differently...  Oh well, I'm not going to cry over spilt Imperial, I'll just have to go back again.  And don't get me wrong, we still saw beautiful beaches, lots of crazy cool wildlife, did the zip lining thing, went on ATV's, sampled coconuts and I even had a cheeky monkey try to rip my bikini top off... BAD MONKEY!  But, for me and my "travel partner" (ex-boyfriend), the real highlight of the trip was the Panama portion.  So amazing in fact, that I think I will need to dedicate several posts to talking about it.  Therefore, today I'm simply going to be the bearer of exciting news and then tease you with the promise of additional posts so that you come back tomorrow and the following day to get the full scoop! Deal? Ok cool.

                              That is a cat chasing a laser pointer, in case you couldn't tell...

                              That is a cat chasing a laser pointer, in case you couldn't tell...

So the news:  If you've been reading this blawg for a while, you may have caught my post on the Ace Hotel in Palm Springs... and perhaps picked up on my obsession with both the brand and the resort...?  Well, either way, since I'm of the impression that the Ace Hotel company can do no wrong, I was elated upon hearing that they are opening an Ace Hotel in Panama! And a bit wistful, because I would have died to have to stayed there when I went and so now I'll have to go back... But there are so many other places I want to visit.  #notrealproblemsproblems

One of the reasons why I LOVE Panama is because of the area we stayed in Panama City... 'twas perfect.  Unlike Costa Rica, we got lucky and everything just kind of came together.  I happened to come across this neighborhood during my pre-trip researching, called the Casco Viejo (translates to "Old Quarter" and is also referred to as the Casco Antiguo) in Panama City.  It's the historic district of Panama City and was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1997.  The Casco Viejo was established in 1673 by the Spanish colonists and was historically one of the richest and most densely populated neighborhoods in the Americas!  However, it went through decades of neglect starting in the 1950's and only in recent years has it started to see a resurgence as many of the historic colonial buildings with strong Spanish and French colonial architecture influences, still remain and are being renovated and revitalized.  I was entranced because you feel as if you've gone back in time but don't have to do without modern amenities.  It also felt a bit like I was in the small old school town that was a mixture of Havana, the French Quarter in New Orleans and the Pirates of the Caribbean ride at Disneyland.  And apparently (as I went there five years ago), the number of gourmet restaurants, bars and high end shops continues to grow as the area gets more attention.  When I went, there were definitely some cool restaurants, jazz bars and salsa dancing clubs but it was amongst just as many buildings in disrepair so there was a bit of eerie-ness that made you wonder if you were supposed to be there... Although that aspect also made it feel like you were in on a cool secret... And I am all about being in on secrets.  With the Ace Hotel moving in, however, this pretty much confirms that the number of buildings in need of revitalization is decreasing and the area is becoming a real player in the Panama scene.   

The hotel is actually going to be called the American Trade Hotel but is the Ace people all the way.  You can begin booking reservations now for January 1, 2014 here.

In addition to accommodations, there will be a jazz bar, farm-to-table restaurant, and rooftop deck and pool, plus Panamanian coffee roasted and brewed on-site. 

Due to the fact that they are not officially open, I had a difficult time finding some photos of the hotel and rooms but check out what I was able sift out: 

American Trade Hotel Panama City.jpg
American Trade Hotel Panama.jpg
Ace Hotel Panama.jpg
Rooms have ocean views.  Nice.

Rooms have ocean views.  Nice.

Yeah, not a lot, I know. I'm sorry.  But hopefully that just adds to the magical mysteriousness that is part of the city's charm :).

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Hawt Flashes

My weekend was great, thanks for asking.  I got to experience peak temperatures during the hottest time of the year in scorching Palm Springs.  I swear, I was sweating out of my eyeballs!  But I still had a blast, found $4 on the ground at the Ace Hotel, and played the adult version of Apples to Apples (AKA: Cards Against Humanity).  Let me just tell you, we offended more than the whole of humanity but let's just keep that between us ;).  And then, on Saturday night.. Things got a bit cray. 

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Hanging from the chandeliers cray!  Trust me, it was one for the books!

But actually, I want to talk to you guys about something more serious.  Have you heard about  Probably the hawtest thing since sliced bread, just sayin'. 

FlashTattoos Flash Tat.jpg
Flashy Tattoos.jpg

Holy moly people!  My first question when I saw this was: why hasn't this been thought of sooner?!  It's brilliant! Literally.  And ladies, you wouldn't even have to take your jewelry off before going to bed (HUGE problem, now solved!)

Flash Tat Bracelet.jpg

I don't know if you've noticed, but I am actually a huge temp tat fan.  And I like to bring the flash whenever I can.  I have already purchased the "Nikki" and will be applying ASAP upon receipt of purchase.  So that, when I walk in the club, all eyes on me... (I'm with the party rock crew) and thus, ALL DRINKS ARE FREE!  Good strategy?  I thought so.  So if we're out at the clurb and you see me, being all fly and flashy, holla at ya girl and I'll get you some free drinks too!  Or, you can just get yourself some of these flashy tats and then we can be twinsies!  Hey now.

Flash Tatttoos.jpg

So, just in case, that's not your thang, I've got some flashy interiors that are sure to fit anyone's fancy: 

Do you think there's a pot of gold at the top of the stairs?  Cuz I do.

Do you think there's a pot of gold at the top of the stairs?  Cuz I do.

If you like to read, this bookcase area would probably feel like the Land of Oz, don't you think??

If you like to read, this bookcase area would probably feel like the Land of Oz, don't you think??

Watercolor Walls?  Sure, why not?

Watercolor Walls?  Sure, why not?

Woah Nelly! That's BRIGHT!  And the chandelier fits our flash.

Woah Nelly! That's BRIGHT!  And the chandelier fits our flash.

Oh, and last night, me and my fam went to see Supertramp at the OC Fairgrounds Amphitheater.  It was magical.  Roger Hodgson (or as I call him, "Rodge the Hodge") really brought it (black jeans, white kicks, cowhide vest and all)!  So allow me to pass the good stuff and light up your week with some magic:

Come on, Monday, give a little bit! 

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Tent Week: Ace's Aces

Oh Me, Oh My!  Something WILD has happened!  My real life has aligned itself with my blog life!  Are you all as astonished as I am?  You see, today is the final day of tent week and boy, have I got a great topic comin' atcha:  The Ace Hotel in Palm Springs.  And... as luck would have it, I happen to be headed down there in a few hours to celebrate the last few weeks of my dear friend's "freedom" (jk, E ) before she gets hitched. But don't get too excited because I won't be sharing any of those juicy details with all you voyeurs!  What I will be sharing though, is one of my absolute favorite hotels ever!  That features (yep, you guessed it): TENTS!

Ace Hotel Sign.jpg
Ace-Hotel-Palm-Springs Tent Rooms.jpg

This FABULOUS hotel is situated in a converted Howard Johnson motel.  And they have an on-site retro diner called King's Highway in a refurbished Denny's (talk about an upgrade, right?)  

Ace Hotel PS.jpg

It's truly a summer camp for adults (and not just in the way that people always say that, this time I really mean it!).  They have the best games (which obvi includes ping pong), you can “rent” bikes (and by rent, I mean, for free – so hippy, so lovely), they offer "boozy sno cones" out of a bar stand they call the "short bus" (truth), there are HAMMOCKS GALORE and there's even a Yurt sauna in the middle of the patio (which I couldn’t find a picture of besides one of the spa, so now you’ll all have to go there and check it out for yoselves).

Hammocks Ace Hotel Palm Springs.jpg
Ace Hotel Short Bus.jpg
Yurt Spa.jpg
Ace Palm Springs Bikes.jpg

The room walls are covered with tent canvas to give the illusion of “camping” without all the “ew” nasty stuff of actually camping (LOL), each room comes equipped with a record player (and records, of course)... yes, in your f'ing room, and macramé curtains in the lobby (hell yes!).

Ace Hotel Rooms.jpg
Ace Hotel.jpg
Ace Hotel Palm Springs.jpg
Palm Springs Hotels.jpg
Tents Palm Springs Ace.jpg
Lobby Ace Hotel.jpg

Did I mention that they also have outdoor fire pits, these green canvas palm frond like things for pool umbrellas (see below), and a spa (I know I already mentioned that but I think it’s worth noting twice – all adult summer camps must have a spa)?They're also rocking sick beats playing at the pool party (or "swim club" as they call it), and have ahhmazing food (basically, the best chilaquiles I have ever had).  ALSO: Hot pre-pubescent lifeguards and the weirdest robes imaginable, probably just to get you out of your comfort zone :).  If you're eclectic and have a shred of coolness, this is right up your alley.  I swear it on all things holy.  There's no point in denying it, it's hipster-esque, BUT it's done in a way that really everyone can appreciate. 

Outdoor Patio Ace Hotel.jpg
Ace Hotel Pool Party.jpg
Weird Robes Ace Hotel.jpg

Best part:  When I went there last, there was a group of people there that were getting married.. IN THE POOL.  Um, yes.  The bride's dad literally walked her down the pool steps in a wedding dress to her groom.  And all of the guest were wearing ridiculous and enviable hats of all sorts!  Where the heck else are you going to see something like that?!

Ace Hotel At Night.jpg

Basically, it's zee best!  That's all you really need to know. 

Sorry for the predominantly picture post… And lack of my special brand of wit (I mean, they say "brevity is the soul of wit" right? So chew on that for a while!)… I'm just a bit rushed today.  But, if I’m being honest with myself, I’m sure you all are actually pretty relieved. So...

Hope you have a saucy weekends!  I lurve you all!

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