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Colorful artwork and furniture for sale in the showroom
Colorful artwork and Midcentury Modern classics are displayed at the Boomerang for Modern showroom in Palm Springs.
(Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times)

The best Palm Springs shops to find Midcentury Modern gems are stocked with surprises

For all of Palm Springs’ sun-soaked glamour and reputation as a mecca for Midcentury Modern design, some of the best places to shop for vintage goods in the desert are in unexpectedly unassuming places.

Palm Springs offers a surplus of vintage goods from the 1950s, ’60s and beyond, from the Perez Art and Design District, an off-the-beaten-path enclave of commercial buildings in Cathedral City, to the Racquet Club, a strip mall at the north end of town featuring an escape room and a coffee shop along with several vintage stores.

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I recently spent a day visiting as many vintage stores as possible, and the most exciting thing I found was how varied the inventory was. Sure, there were some midcentury classics (Eames lounge chairs, Nelson bubble lamps, Sunburst clocks), but there were some surprises you won’t find at your neighborhood vintage store.

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If you’re heading to Palm Springs for Modernism Week, here are 15 great shopping options for fans of Midcentury Modern design. Also, if you’re looking to explore Palm Springs further, check out our comprehensive guide to Palm Springs.

The Shag House in Palm Springs is a joy-filled testament to midcentury optimism. It will be open to the public during Modernism Week, which runs Feb. 15-25.

Feb. 5, 2024

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A white sectional sofa in a furniture store showroom
(Lisa Boone / Los Angeles Times)

A la Mod

Palm Springs Vintage store
“Furniture is like fashion; people like good design,” says James Claude, who has owned A la Mod on North Palm Canyon Drive with Miguel Angel Linares for more than 30 years. As for his wares, Claude says he looks for rarities that are not exclusively midcentury by design. “Midcentury Modern has evolved into a vintage modern vibe,” he says, pointing to some ceramic Italian table lamps from the 1980s and a Steve Chase sectional, shown here ($16,000). He also noted that everything in the showroom is move-in ready, including several midcentury classics such as a Florence Knoll leather and chrome sofa ($7,800), Vladimir Kagan lounge chairs ($12,000) and an Eero Saarinen womb chair and ottoman. True to its Palm Springs location, there is also an excellent selection of vintage patio furniture.

Hours: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday; 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday; and noon to 3 p.m. Sunday.
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Vintage antiques, lighting and a bicycle table in a shop display.
(Lisa Boone / Los Angeles Times)

Antique Galleries of Palm Springs

Palm Springs Antique Store
I felt welcome immediately upon entering the Antique Galleries of Palm Springs as a friendly sales clerk said hello and explained the layout of the sprawling two-story antique emporium. “That’s Man’s Land,” he said jokingly as he pointed to a room filled with nautical goods, model ships and military items.

The 12,000-square-foot former industrial space is located a few miles from downtown Palm Springs and features about 35 vendors selling everything from vintage clothing and jewelry to furniture, lighting and ceramics. Even if you’re not looking to purchase anything, the retro items on two floors are fun to peruse. I came across an orange bicycle credenza bar ($1,350), a pair of orange flowered velvet couches from the 1970s ($650 to $950) and an emerald-green and gold free-standing dry bar ($1,895).

On a recent visit, the warm vibes extended to the exit — across the hall from a vintage Remington Standard typewriter ($599) — where baskets of locally grown lemons, oranges and grapefruit sat with a sign that read, “Free, please take one.”

Hours: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.
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Midcentury furnishings and accessories including a blue molded chair and a wood bar cart
(Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times)

Boomerang for Modern

Palm Springs Vintage store
People appreciate Midcentury Modern design because of its variety, says David Skelley, owner of Boomerang for Modern in the Racquet Club shopping center. “You can mix it with anything: colors, natural woods and soft metals, masks, tribal artwork, and contemporary art and furniture.” Although most of his inventory is vintage, Skelley is also a Herman Miller retailer, meaning you can order furnishings in a wide variety of shades, including the lime-colored sofa by Florence Knoll in the showroom. Skelley likes to sell affordable artwork, which he balances with timeless pieces that he says have “a Boomerang look,” such as the Steel Frame modular sofa by George Nelson for Herman Miller ($8,995). Other gems: Higgins glass rondelays, a mural by noted ceramist Brent J. Bennett, Malcolm Leland ceramic lanterns (starting at $240), and an Alvar Aalto serving cart ($3,475). For Skelley, his selections are personal. “I try to choose things that I would choose for my own home,” he says.

Hours: 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday through Monday.
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Vintage furniture and art in a showroom.
(Lisa Boone / Los Angeles Times)

Christopher Anthony

Palm Springs Antique Store
At Christopher Anthony, a shop specializing in Midcentury Modern furnishings — many of them newly reupholstered — it’s a treat to walk around and check out the art and handmade studio pottery by Southern California artists, among other items for sale. Located in the Uptown Design District, the showroom also offers pillows, including colorful patchwork woven silk pillows from Istanbul; a set of 64 orange-colored Hermès boxes ($2,800); and a variety of unique lighting, including a stunning pair of handpainted ceramic lamps with raised discs ($2,750). Anthony himself is friendly and quick to share interesting historical details on the pieces that catch your eye.

Hours: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday as well as Wednesday through Saturday; and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday.
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Two chairs atop a table at a store
(Lisa Boone / Los Angeles Times)

Haus of Re[X]

Palm Springs Vintage store
Yes, you have to dig when you’re at the Haus of Re[X], a crowded showroom offering everything from candles and art games to Tom of Finland books (this might explain why Trixie Mattel of “RuPaul’s Drag Race” was spotted shopping here a few years ago). On a recent visit, there were some vintage gems: a pair of SK40 lounge chairs by Etienne-Henri Martin ($1,450), a set of four Bert England mahogany cane-back armchairs ($6,950), pictured here, and a set of six clean-lined BRNO chairs for Knoll ($6,995).

Hours: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.
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A chair and table with other home furnishings.
(Lisa Boone / Los Angeles Times)

Hedge

Cathedral City Vintage store
Hedge owners Charles Pearson and Thomas Sharkey offer a wide selection of fine and decorative arts displayed alongside classic midcentury furnishings. On a recent visit, the mix included a velvet Vladimir Kagan sofa, chrome and leather seating, Murano glass, Martz ceramic table lamps ($1,950) and Woodard Furniture Co. iron patio furniture. The owners pride themselves on finding unusual pieces, which makes shopping here so much fun (even if you’re just looking).

Hours: Noon to 4 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
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Three couches surround a round cocktail table with a sculpture on it in a large retail space.
(Lisa Boone / Los Angeles Times)

Market Market

Palm Springs Clothing store
At Mojave Flea founder James Morelos’ 40,000-square-foot Market Market, which opened in 2023 inside a former Stein Mart department store, the focus is on small independent labels and local makers from Joshua Tree, the Coachella Valley and Los Angeles.

These days, the roomy space has about 50 vendors selling new and vintage goods including clothing, furnishings, plants and art.

Among the one-of-a-kind items I spotted on a recent visit were a pair of Lawson Fenning lounge chairs ($2,900 a piece), Jens Risom chairs in mohair ($7,500), Milo Baughman lounge chairs ($3,750), handmade mohair cardigans by ReckLess ($746), caftans made from vintage silk kimonos ($1,250) and hand-dyed upcycled clothing by Kazmik Grace.

Hours: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.
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A round dining table with five chairs around it and one on top in a showroom.
(Lisa Boone / Los Angeles Times)

Modernway

Palm Springs Vintage store
For more than 20 years, Courtney and Joy Newman’s showroom has been a showcase for rare and classic pieces from the 1950s through the 1970s. It’s a pleasure to peruse the small showroom, which houses nostalgic pieces such as a turquoise Tappan oven from the 1960s ($875), Dux scissor chairs by Folke Ohlsson ($2,750 for the pair), a Hans Wegner heart table and chairs ($7,750), shown here, colorful Bloomcraft fabric from 1967 ($395) and a stunning Adrian Pearsall custom floating sofa ($4,900). In a nod to Hollywood, a trio of Mole-Richardson Co. studio lights from the 1950s also were for sale in its signature pink.

Hours: Noon to 5 p.m. Thursday through Monday.
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Chairs on display in a showroom
(Lisa Boone / Los Angeles Times)

Nok Nok Design

Cathedral City Vintage store
Located in the Perez Art & Design mall in Cathedral City, Alfonso Navarro and Denisse Wolfe’s spare showroom feels like an art gallery filled with rare Midcentury Modern and postmodern gems. Navarro says the inventory ranges anywhere from $100 to $75,000 in price, including an outrageous zebra-striped “Obliqua” lounge chair by Mario Botta, sleek Italian leather Soriana chairs from the ’70s, delicate Italian pendant lights and a pair of blond wood sculptural Jens Risom chairs. With inventory constantly changing, I look forward to seeing what the pair features the next time I visit.

Hours: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.
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Two chairs flanking a triangular wood table on display outdoors, with a van behind them.
(Lisa Boone / Los Angeles Times)

Palm Springs Vintage Market

Palm Springs Flea Market
Like a miniature version of the Rose Bowl Flea Market, the Palm Springs Vintage Market, held the first Sunday of the month in the parking lot next to the Palm Springs Cultural Center (a.k.a. the Camelot Theatres building), offers deals on vintage furniture, clothes and accessories. The flea market was less populated on a recent visit due to rain. However, there were still some great finds, including bright orange patio furniture, classic midcentury wood furniture, oversize ceramic table lamps, colorful vintage barware, Bertoia side chairs and Saarinen tulip tables and chairs.

Hours: 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. the first Sunday of October through May. Early preview is from 7 to 8 a.m.

Admission: Admission is $10 from 7 a.m. to 8 a.m. and $5 after. Dogs on leash are allowed.
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Tables, a chair and other home goods in a store.
(Lisa Boone / Los Angeles Times)

Spaces

Cathedral City Vintage store
Located in the Perez Art and Design Center, Spaces has the feel of an antique mall with different rooms featuring goods including small ceramics, plush seating and midcentury furniture. A towering selection of books makes for fun perusing, and the large selection of soft goods and fine art offers excellent options for gift giving.

Hours: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday.
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A pair of boxing gloves hang above furniture on display in a store
(Lisa Boone / Los Angeles Times)

Stewart Galleries

Palm Springs Vintage store
The emphasis may be on fine art at Stewart Galleries in downtown Palm Springs, but owners George Resner and Phil Kieffer complement the many works of art with some interesting and even quirky furnishings and accessories. While one woman was overheard sharing that she scored an Agnes Pelton painting here, there were other items of note, including a wide variety of midcentury ceramics, boxing gloves, shown here, a stuffed goose and a rare vintage architect’s model of an A-frame house from the 1940s.

Hours: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily.
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Display shelves in an antique mall.
(Lisa Boone / Los Angeles Times)

Sunny Dunes Antique Mall

Palm Springs Vintage store
You could spend hours in this 6,000-square-foot warehouse, which is overwhelming in a good way and features more than 40 dealers. The emphasis here is on smaller goods, and it’s fun to look for treasures, even if it takes a bit of determination. But the payoff, as always in thrifting, is in what you’ll find: smile-inducing tiki tableware, Fiestaware in every color, a full set of vintage Nest Stone dinnerware ($375) and typewriters and posters galore.

Hours: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.
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Chairs, tables, lamps and other home goods in a store.
(Lisa Boone / Los Angeles Times)

Swag Furniture of Palm Springs

Palm Springs Vintage store
Located across the street from the Sunny Dunes Antique Mall, this two-room showroom offers a variety of beautifully preserved midcentury furnishings and accessories. In the mix: a stunning Milo Baughman sofa ($5,800) and leather Papa Bear chair were restored and ready for someone’s home, along with some gorgeous Nautilus chairs by Vladamir Kagan ($4,600).

Hours: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday through Monday.
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