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It’s a common dilemma: Either you have a great nursing job but you’re not thrilled about where it causes you to live, or you’re crazy about your city or town but find that local employment opportunities leave lots to be desired. Is it too much to ask to love where you work AND where you live?

Not if you join our team of nurses at Eisenhower Health.

In our view, finding a great job in a great place is not only doable, it’s essential for great quality of life. After all, working where you love to live can play a big part in achieving a healthy work-life balance. At Eisenhower Health, we’re in the fortunate position to offer nurses challenging, rewarding careers with a recognized healthcare leader in a Magnet-designated culture of nursing excellence — all in a desirable and affordable location.

California’s Coachella Valley is home to our world-class medical center and more than 30 highly regarded outpatient clinics. Here, the sun shines 360 days a year in spectacular desert surroundings just a 90-minute drive from the beaches of either San Diego or Los Angeles. Residents of the Valley enjoy a high quality of life with low cost of living, short commute times, and a range of activities to suit everyone from outdoor enthusiasts to art appreciators to savvy shoppers.

You may know of the Coachella Valley through its highly celebrated city, Palm Springs. You may associate the area solely with luxury resorts, the senior set, and Old Hollywood celebrities. You’d be right — resort living, retirees, and vestiges of Rat Pack glitz are as much a part of our surroundings as the mountain-ringed desert. But so, too, are multigenerational neighborhoods; a thriving LGBTQ+ community; charming restaurants, cafes, and clubs; and reasonably priced housing that all share a laid-back environment surrounded by natural beauty.

Take a tour of the nine eclectic communities that make up the Coachella Valley. There’s so much to share, we’ve split the information into a two-part series. Pinpoint the community that best suits your idea of the good life, learn more at Visit Greater Palm Springs, and then head to our Careers page to find the rewarding nursing job to complete your work-life balance.

Cathedral City: Artsy and Family Friendly

Population                                          54,596

Residents Age 65+                              15%

Median Household Income                $43,384

Home Ownership Rate                       60%

Median Home Value                           $232,400


Named for the spectacular basilica-resembling canyon it overlooks, Cathedral City (aka Cat City to locals), takes pride in its flourishing art scene. Galleries, events, public tours, and pop-up spaces showcase a wide range of art and artists in every media, from conventional to experimental, prompting the city to dub itself “Where Art Lives.”  Throw out any notion of stuffiness or a high-brow atmosphere here; it’s art for all in Cat City, where public installations, like the famed water sculpture called the Fountain of Life in the heart of downtown, offer up-close art interactivity for adults and children alike. The SCRAP Gallery, a unique museum focused on environmental art, cohosts a Children’s Art Party each month.

A family atmosphere is likewise reflected in a kid-friendly entertainment center, an ice rink, nine community parks, and K-12 public education that boasts an elementary school named a Title I Achievement School and California Exemplary Distinguished School. With its low crime rate and affordable housing, Cathedral City has been recognized as one of America’s Most Livable Cities by the U.S. Conference of Mayors.

Signature Stuff

LGBT Days — A diverse, fun-filled weekend with live music and dancing, LGBT Days is held each spring. Cheeky activities include a Battle-of-the-Bars bartender competition and the Bed Race, which draws groups from throughout the Coachella Valley in the creative decoration of four-poster beds that compete for first place in a comic sprint.

Hot Air Balloon Fest — Each November, clear Cathedral City skies fill with colorful hot air balloons, while jazz concerts and other events entertain on the ground.

Snow Fest — Snow isn’t a usual happening in Cat City’s desert climate, but that minor detail doesn’t stop the city from celebrating the spirit of the season each December. A gazillion white bubbles transform downtown into a Winter Wonderland.


Bet You Didn’t Know

Don’t ride your bike through the Fountain of Life art installation; it’s against the law. Ditto for sleeping  in a parked car anywhere within city limits. But do share the city’s celebrity bragging rights: Actress Suzanne Somers of Three’s Company TV show fame grew up here; and Frank Sinatra, Sonny Bono, and other celebs are buried in the local cemetery.

Coachella: Colorful and Authentic

Population                                          45,433

Residents Age 65+                              6%

Median Household Income                $34,300

Home Ownership Rate                       66%

Median Home Value                           $183,800


The celebrated annual music and art festival of the same name is actually held in neighboring Indio, but the city of Coachella has its own claim to colorful culture. This close-knit, affordable community is proud of its Mexican heritage and is home to some of the most authentic Mexican cuisine in the Coachella Valley. Known as the City of Eternal Sunshine, Coachella has also gained recognition as the City of Murals for its prominent display of vibrant wall paintings called the Coachella Walls. The colorful murals, the contribution of local artists in celebration of the city and its rich history, are located throughout downtown.

Lesser known than its two booming casinos is Coachella’s up-and-coming market for agritourism. The city’s surrounding farms supply some of the Coachella Valley’s finest restaurants. California produces 90% of the nation’s dates, much of which is grown in and around Coachella.

Signature Stuff

Día de los Muertos USA — An annual “Day of the Dead” celebration of life and family takes place over two days in Coachella in early November. The popular holiday festival features Mexican culture, music, art, and food.

Bet You Didn’t Know

Oopsie! But for a typo, the founders of Coachella meant for the city to be named “Conchilla” (Spanish for “little shells”). A printer error on the town prospectus didn’t hold up the announcement of the city’s founding — even with its unintended new name.

Desert Hot Springs: Quiet and Peaceful

Population                                          28,757

Residents Age 65+                              11.5%

Median Household Income                $34,251

Home Ownership                                44%

Median Home Value                           $154,600


The sound most often heard in Desert Hot Springs: “Ahhhhhhh.” And that’s not due to the city’s renowned mineral springs and spas alone. Desert Hot Springs, known as Spa City, is a get-away-from-it-all kind of place, where you can enjoy the quiet simplicity of feeling a cool breeze during the day and seeing the night’s full panorama of stars. Bustling Palm Springs is a 10-minute drive but a world away from Desert Hot Springs’ quiet neighborhoods. Traffic and noise? Nope, not here. A natural, healing atmosphere? Yep, you’ll find wellness is a thing in Desert Hot Springs, along with friendly, welcoming residents who care about their community and work to improve it. 

Signature Stuff

The aquifers — Some of the best hot and cold mineral waters to be had bubble up from beneath Desert Hot Springs. If you like it hot, day spas offer dips in pristine, sulfur-free waters of up to 180° F. Or cool down with a delightful drink of water so pure that it has been recognized in an international water tasting competition.

The park next door — The renowned Joshua Tree National Park, with plentiful hiking trails through unparalleled high desert geography, is practically on the doorstep of Desert Hot Springs.

Bet You Didn’t Know

Desert Hot Springs has a long and colorful history dating back to early 1900s homesteading, but it wasn’t incorporated as a city until much more recently — 1963, in fact.

Indian Wells: Lush But Chill

Population                                          5,404

Residents Age 65+                              60.5%

Median Household Income                $103,516

Home Ownership                                85%

Median Home Value                           $680,000


OK, luxury lives here; but for all its celebrated golf courses, tennis courts, resorts, and spas, Indian Wells lounges in laidback fashion. This is suburbia at its finest, with fine restaurants, chic coffee shops, and well-ranked schools to show for it. Residents here skew well-off retiree  and clearly live the vacation life, but the comforts of Indian Wells are far more casual than posh.

Signature Stuff

BNP Paribus Open — Indian Wells hosts the highest attended tournament on the international tennis circuit, the BNP Paribus Open, also known as the Indian Wells Masters Tournament or the Indian Wells Open, over a two-week period each March. The world’s top tennis players compete in the event.

Indian Wells Art Festival — The city transforms its renowned Tennis Garden into an outdoor art market featuring works from across the world. Now in its 17th year, the Indian Wells Art Festival has been recognized as one of the top fine art shows in the U.S.

Bet You Didn’t Know

Golf and tennis aren’t the only recreational activities that keep residents busy in Indian Wells; bird watching is popular, too. The Pacific Flyway, a prime migratory route for billions of birds each year, includes the Coachella Valley. In Indian Wells, however, so many birds on the move can make for some messy poolside furniture. Hotels like the Hyatt Regency put a different kind of freelancer to work to minimize the damage: birds of prey that keep other avian interlopers away.

Next up in our tour: the cities of Indio, La Quinta, Palm Desert, Palm Springs, and Rancho Mirage.

Principal sources:

U.S. Census Bureau (2017 estimates)


Originally posted on 23/5/2019

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