Tomorrow – May 10th – works by the late Spanish Brazilian Artist Maria Eugenia Casuso will come down
Last Chance to Buy! Tomorrow – May 10th – works by the late Spanish Brazilian Artist Maria Eugenia Casuso will come down. Our thanks to Grand Central Palm Springs for co-sponsoring this exhibit for the last two months! A portion of all sales benefits Pancreatic Cancer Research – just stop by Grand Central to peruse, muse, dine and buy!
— David Perry
Release updated 9 May 2023: original post 29 March 2023 – Palm Springs, CA: EST? PST? What time is it? The answer is #GCT-PS — “Grand Central Time” — at the iconic Grand Central Palm Springs (www.grandcentralpalmsprings.om) for breakfast, brunch, munch, lunch, “nibbles and bites”, creative cocktails and casually elegant dinner. On March 30Grand Central hosted a special reception to highlight not only their artfully delicious menu, but unveil a new “History of Grand Central” mural by local artist Aaron Hansen. In addition, the reception featured work by the late Spanish Brazilian artist Maria Eugenia Casuso in Grand Central’s gallery and special event space along with work by Georgeanne Papac and Gary Paterson. The works by Casuso will come down May 10th.
“The theme for the Grand Central Mural was inspired by 1930s history of the building itself,” said Hansen. “Rita had expressed that she envisioned a joyous gathering of people from that era like a snapshot of a moment. That started the conversations and possibilities in regards to the direction that the mural would take.”
The “Rita” in question is Rita Capponi, founder and co-owner of Grand Central.
“For me, art and fine food go hand in hand, or should I say brush and fork,” said Rita noting that Grand Central has been named one of Yelp’s Top 100 Brunch Spots in California. “Palm Springs has a unique, casual but sophisticated clientele, and that’s the sort of experience we offer at Grand Central, including a dining room and special event space filled with art.”
As Aaron and Rita considered references and color swatches the dialogue continued and it was decided to add in some historically important people from this time period.
“That’s how we got to the four main characters of the piece, starting left with Amelia Earhart and Eleanor Roosevelt,” said Aaron. “The center was reserved for a longtime patron of the building, Howard Hughes.”
Hughes was known to shop at Grand Central’s location when it was the Desmond’s Department Store, one of the toniest fashion brands from Los Angeles of the Era, and a “first” for the then sleepy desert town of Palm Springs.
“To the right of Howard Hughes is none other than the genius mind of the times Albert Einstein,” adds Aaron. “It was a lot of fun adding the floor lamps and playing with the way they would light the curtains and characters in the room. I knew the mural was a hit when people on the sidewalk would get my attention by knocking on the window and giving me thumbs up and take photos. I’m glad it could add so much dimension and character to the restaurant and can’t wait to do some more with Grand Central!”
Aaron Hansen’s new mural, joins the work of three other artists currently on display at Grand Central: The Mid Century Modernist colorful geographic work of the late Maria Eugenia Casuso, who died from pancreatic cancer and two local artists, Georgeanne Papac and Gary Paterson.
“As they used to say at our namesake Grand Central Station in New York City, ‘meet us under the clock’,” said co-owner and founder John Diskin. “After three years of COVID enforced restrictions, people are ready to mix, mingle and make up for lost time. We’re seeing a real bounce in requests for special events, including weddings and parties, for which our art gallery space is perfectly suited.”
With a patio, dining room and bar long known as the place “to see and be seen” by Palm Springs and Hollywood’s weekend glitterati, Grand Central also boasts a true “hidden gem”: its spacious special event space, complete with separate entrance, for the perfect Instagram-able wedding, bachelorette party, rehearsal dinner, birthday or business gathering. In addition to its artistic backdrop, the spacious “Art Gallery” special event space can comfortably accommodate 150 for a seated dinner or over 200 for standing cocktail reception. Additionally, Grand Central is open for a full buyout of the restaurant with the “Art Gallery” room set up for dancing either with live music or a DJ.
What makes Grand Central Café Palm Springs unique?
“Our brunch is very much based on California cuisine with influences of the coffee cafe culture of Auckland, New Zealand, Dublin, Ireland and Melbourne, Australia,” John explains. “Our goal and our mission are to bring those flavors to Palm Springs.”
“For dinner, we expand our offerings to bring a fine dining experience in a more casual and relaxed environment,” says Rita, known for her personalized touch as hostess and creator of Grand Central’s iconic and seasonally changing “Book Holiday Tree” in the main dining room. “Good food doesn’t have to be overly complicated, and lovely surroundings don’t have to be stuffy. At Grand Central, we stand for approachable elegance.”
Why the name Grand Central?
“In cities and train stations throughout the years, people have been meeting ‘under the clock’,” explains John. “Grand Central’s iconic clock is a reminder to take a breath. Take some time to relax and enjoy innovative food and drink at our table.”
“Most importantly,” reiterates Rita. “Take some time to be with family and friends.”
Grand Central opened in May of 2018 after extensive renovations to the previous Palm Springs Institution, Desmond’s Department Store. After sitting vacant for over a decade, owners and husband and wife, John and Rita, revitalized and reimagined the space as a place for friends to gather and share good conversation, great cocktails, and a wonderful meal. The space was updated to a modern open concept with a large opening to the kitchen that helps bring the restaurant to life and ensures a one-of-a-kind experience, voted “Best of the Valley” 2020 by the Desert Sun.
Grand Central is open seven days a week for breakfast, brunch and lunch: 7:30am ‘til 3pm. Wednesday through Sundays, “Nibbles & Bites” is served at the bar 3pm ‘til 5pm and dinner 5pm ‘til 9pm including the popular new “Tasting Menu” featuring three appetizers, three entrée selections, dessert and a special wine pairing. For more information or for special events call (760) 699-7185. Reservations at OpenTable.com. www.GrandCentralPalmSprings.com