There’s more to the desert city than resorts and retirees. Here’s how to spend an eventful three days in and around Arizona’s surprisingly sophisticated capital.
Check in to Found: Re (doubles from $229), a new industrial hotel featuring work by local artists. Head south to Roosevelt Row, a swath of galleries, street art, cocktail bars, and boutiques (go to Antique Sugar for vintage and Revolver Records for vinyl). For dinner, the tasting menu at Barrio Café Gran Reserva ($44 for six courses) can’t be beat — dishes like duck breast in cranberry mole are approachable yet elegant. Then venture back to Roosevelt: on first and third Fridays, art walks, exhibitions, and concerts keep the area humming until late.
Central Avenue is the city’s cultural hub. The Phoenix Art Museum has a vast international collection and a stellar fashion program run by an alum of the Met’s Costume Institute; the current show juxtaposes gowns by Yeohlee Teng with Richard Serra’s massive black-and-white screen prints. Visit the Heard Museum to see American Indian works like Hopi kachina dolls and Zuni jewelry. (Until August, catch “Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera” — the Heard is the exhibition’s sole U.S. stop.) Cap off the evening with an art-house flick at FilmBar and music at bar-cum-gallery the Lost Leaf.
Spend the day in Scottsdale, starting with a tour of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin West. Stop by the new Andaz for a Southwestern-tinged brunch at Weft & Warp. Then it’s on to the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art for James Turrell’s Knight Rise and, this fall, a retrospective of architect Paolo Soleri; if you’re too early, Cosanti, Soleri’s futuristic home, is a worthy substitute. Back in Phoenix, pick up a memento of your trip — like architectural jewelry by Heidi Abrahamson — at For the People.