‘Let’s Keep the Cheer Here’ in Rancho Mirage This Holiday Season

As the holidays grow closer, Rancho Mirage’s “Let’s Keep the Cheer Here” initiative reminds of the many advantages of supporting local, independent businesses during the holiday shopping season. For every $100 spent in Rancho Mirage, $68 stays here to help the community at large. Local retailer, Rancho Relaxo, not only adds unique character and charm to our desert city, but many of the items in the shop are made by Californian artisans, putting even more emphasis on local.

What’s in a name?

When Rancho Relaxo opened at the end of 2019, owner Stella Adena says she was unaware of “The Simpsons” episode that featured a similarly named spa destination. Instead, she was inspired by a cross-country road trip her husband took after college. He and a friend drove from Washington, D.C. to Rancho Mirage and referred to it as Rancho Relaxo. Loving the alliteration, the name stuck. 

Surprisingly, the moniker is something customers love as well. “Everyone calls their home Rancho Relaxo or has a friend who does,” Adena says.

Perhaps that’s why the sustainably made t-shirts are such a big seller. Adena says she’s had customers come in and buy one in every color. 

Cultivating local talent

Whether shoppers seek something as small as a keychain or as large as a piece of furniture, it’s likely been made by one of more than 200 California artisans Adena taps for products. Instagram has been a great resource for her as these craftsmen find her or she finds them there. It’s where she located 9-year-old Elsa (and her 6-year-old brother) who make the handwoven rainbow ornaments that customers can find in her shop.

The helpful California Gift Guide on the front page of the store’s website helps shoppers find other great items handmade with love. Other customer favorites include:

The garden jar palm tree, California poppy seed grow kit, and giant sequoia live seedling are great ways to give the gift of Golden State nature. In fact, the sequoia seedling supplier, The Jonsteen Company, provides a lifetime guarantee. Since the trees can live to be 3,000 years old, that guarantee can actually add up to be many lifetimes.

Safe seasonal shopping

Rancho Relaxo is 3600 square feet of openness where it’s easy for a 20% occupancy to shop with ease when they come by the store. Current hours are Tuesday and Thursday (11 a.m. – 3 p.m.), Wednesday (11 a.m. – 5 p.m.). Adena says shop hours are being adjusted as she responds to current COVID conditions. Shoppers can call for weekend hours as well as order online and pick up orders.

Like so many other small business owners, Adena says she appreciates how customers are stressing that they are avoiding the giant online retailers and big box stores and really want to buy local, especially at this time of year. Hopefully the trend to Keep Cheer Here and shop small will go far beyond the holidays and into 2021.

Rancho Relaxo, 69930 Highway 111, Rancho Mirage, CA; 760-656-7009, ranchorelaxoca.com.