Making a decision about what to do on New Year’s Eve just keeps getting easier and easier the older and wiser I get!  Home parties can be great, but I get lazy about throwing them and just want to go out.  Thankfully, there are so many places only a stone’s throw from me in Rancho Mirage that I barely have to figure cab fare into my budget.

Great restaurants with special multi-course prix fix meals abound.  You know my affinity for Shame On The Moon //www.shameonthemoon.com/, and its four- or five-courser with prices ranging from $65 to $85 is a great place to start before possibly moving on to a private party or to one of the resorts.  Likewise for Chef Andres’ four courses at Roy’s, offering delectable Hawaiian Fusion cuisine for $49-85 //www.roysrestaurant.com/.

Food not that important to you?  Grab a nibble at home or at your hotel, head on over to The Show at the Agua Caliente Casino Resort Spa, and rock to the groove of cover-band-extraordinaire “Mrs. Robinson” performing multi-generational hit after hit, with tons of costume changes and music that will have you dancing in the aisles.  Then head over to the casino and play the night away! //www.hotwatercasino.com/TheShow/.

Rancho Las Palmas has a full roster of New Year’s Eve events, including an early family buffet for $29, a casino-themed adult buffet and ultra lounge for $99, and a five-course dinner with live music and champagne toast in their premiere restaurant, bluEmber, for $125.  //www.rancholaspalmas.com/

Likewise, Westin Mission Hills Resort and Spa invites guests to “Sip, Sup, Swing, and Sizzle” the night away with all kinds of New Year’s options, including its Bella Vista Restaurant’s $125 dinner with premium wine pairings. //www.westinmissionhills.com/palm-springs-holidays

Those who are looking for a bit of old-style celebration should consider Wally’s Desert Turtle for its six-course spread and five-piece dance band, complete with champagne and sophistication, all for $75-145. //www.wallys-desert-turtle.com/home.html

Whatever you do and wherever you end up, be smart, be safe, and celebrate like it’s 2012!

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