The lifestyle-oriented cannabis dispensary opens a new shop and throws a party just in time for Palm Springs Pride.
Founded by passionate set of siblings and born out of a unique desire to advocate and celebrate cannabis in all of its forms, Lighthouse began as a single location in California’s scenic and chilled-out Coachella. Selling cannabis with a special helping of consultation and health-conscious advocacy, the store was an instant hit and Lighthouse was welcomed into the community as a resource and meeting place of sorts, for both the experienced and curious.
Lighthouse’s approach has been absolutely experiential- it’s a move away from the typical dispensary concept that can be deeply off-putting to non-consumers of cannabis and irritating to connoisseurs: terminology and a breadth of product that feels overwhelming, an incessant attempt to up-sell, and a lack of space for enjoyment in a controlled environment.
Instead, Lighthouse is creating a space for education, relaxation, and exploration, inspired by and influenced by cannabis.
This past weekend, the team welcomed the public to the newest location: Lighthouse Palm Springs, located on the prime strip of Palm Springs in a gorgeous midcentury-inspired building. The opening weekend, coinciding with Palm Springs Pride, was a massive bash, with a float in the parade, a party on the front terrace, and a first-ever Cannabis Queen.
The New Location: Lighthouse Palm Springs
Immediately, there is an airiness and luxuriousness to Lighthouse Palm Springs that is unexpected. Even my friend, who has spent time in all sorts of dispensary, immediately remarked on how “homey” it felt.
With high ceilings, an enormous floating bouquet measuring at least 5 feet long, walls of windows, and plenty of comfortable seating, the space already feels more akin to a fashionable boutique than a weed dispensary. Out front, along the main road, there is a large terrace with seating and music. Architecturally thoughtful, there are no bars on the windows, graffiti covering the walls or hulking security people crowding the front door. Instead, it’s a low impact and comfortable, with minimal advertising and uncrowded displays of merchandise.
Although the Palm Springs location of Lighthouse had only been open for a few days, the community feedback has been resoundingly positive. “We are trying to incorporate ourselves into the community in a thoughtful way, and allowing the community to help form this space.” said Danielle Rubin, who designed the space. Indeed, Lighthouse is doing this in more than one way. First, they’re inviting local artists and fashion designers to contribute to the design of the space, as well as having daily engagement events with the vendors who provide the product in the store.
“Soon, we will have a consumption lounge and a bakery on site, as well”, remarked Brad Davis, COO of Lighthouse. With these active spaces, occupied by local and regional businesses, Lighthouse continues to reinforce its position as a community center of sorts. Lighthouse Palm Springs already has its cafe up and running, and the consumption lounge and bakery will be operating soon.
Atmosphere in Lighthouse
The most striking thing visitors will find about Lighthouse is just how far it feels from the typical dispensary experience. From the cafe to the low impact retail approach, from the check-in experience to the completed purchase, there is nothing uncomfortable or alienating about Lighthouse. Once checked in, every guest meets with a consultant of sorts, a team member of Lighthouse who is well-versed in the product offerings and also well equipped to answer the most basic questions about cannabis and consumption.
Lighthouse advocates and actively works to cultivate an experience that is health oriented, thus the selection of products on offer are thoughtfully curated by experts in the field. The result is a rich and broad variety of offerings, along with a guiding hand in selection that is right for the individual. With health as a centering purpose, people are able to explore cannabis in a serious manner, and with a targeted approach.
There are no stupid questions at Lighthouse. There is no sensation that purchase is required. In fact, Lighthouse supports the idea of guests visiting and spending time beyond picking up their cannabis products. Once the consumption lounge, this loop will be completed, allowing guests to both purchase and experience cannabis in a controlled, relaxing, and open-minded environment.
As I made my way around Lighthouse Palm Springs, I was relaxed and surprised by the breadth of knowledge the consultants had. A number of vendors offered introductions to their various products, from drinks to body creams. I never felt hurried or overwhelmed, and once I made my selections, they were entered into an order system that is entirely digital. A few moments later, a consultant returned with my order and I was on my way.
Lighthouse really does redefine the cannabis shopping experience as being a supportive and relaxing place. Given the variety of localized regulations that governments have placed on cannabis shops, Lighthouse worked especially hard on creating a seamless experience from start to finish, some of their approaches seem novel, but to the customer, seem logical. There is no part of the experience at Lighthouse hasn’t been considered, explored, examined, and reimagined. And that’s the power of Lighthouse altogether.