This Arizona resort town lures many just for the red rock grandeur in which it is situated. Artists seek inspiration from the landscape. Others come to find rejuvenation from the unique vortexes of energy they say are focused on the area. Still others yearn for the luxury offered by dozens of resorts and spas that nestle in the rocks surrounding the town and oases of green that line Oak Creek. And many revel in the beauty and solitude that miles of hiking and biking trails afford the adventurous visitor. Sedona will never fail to enchant no matter what inspires you to visit.
For That Major Art Buy
If you’re shopping for art, it’s hard to miss Exposures International Gallery of Fine Art, surely the largest gallery in Sedona. The huge space showcases art in multiple media by artists of all stripes with an emphasis on sculpture.
Centering on Art
The Sedona Arts Center is the largest showcase of artwork by local artists all available at great prices. The center is not-for-profit, so customers don’t pay sales taxes. From ongoing classes and special workshops with visiting artists to regular fine-art exhibitions, this is the “center” of Sedona’s art scene.
Shop Under the Sycamores
Tlaquepaque only looks like its been here forever. Actually, the planned arts and crafts village dates from the 1970s, built to look like a genuine Mexican village in a shady sycamore grove along Oak Creek. Nevertheless, the arts, crafts, Native American artifacts and jewelry are all genuine. The carefully designed environment offers one of the most unique shopping experiences in the Southwest. Every day, dozens of artisans are busy with their crafts, and more than 40 art galleries and specialty shops purvey their wares. Several restaurants are here to help keep your strength up. Dine and shop some more.
The Spa Experience
Sedona is almost synonymous with spas, and every luxury resort offers its guests opportunities to be pampered. If you want spa treatments without the residency requirement, A Spa For You, 30 Kayenta Ct., might be just the escape you need. The expert staff at this day spa can customize your experience with massage, manicures, pedicures, luxurious soaks, facials and associated treatments all for you. And soon you are on your way again.
Exploring on Foot
Those willing to get off the beaten path can enjoy the relaxing silence of long-established trails, foremost being the West Fork Trail in Oak Creek Canyon, which boasts flora not readily associated with the Southwest. Or immediately to the north of Sedona, the Boynton Canyon Trail winds through an arid side canyon containing 800-year old Anasazi ruins. You can handle either in a morning; soon you’re back at the car and on your way to a delicious lunch in town.
Pete A. Sanders Jr. holds weekly seminars, “Scientific Vortex Information,” where he teaches attendees how to understand and tap Sedona’s famous vortexes for “enhanced prayer, meditation, mind/body healing and outside-the-box creative thinking.” Check it out March 16, 1-2:30 p.m. at the Los Abrigados Resort. $15/person. 928-203-5353 to reserve a seat.
If you’re new to Sedona, a private, customized tour in an SUV by Viator is a great way to get oriented. The tour guide picks you up at your hotel (or designated location) and will devote two and a half hours to explaining the geology, history and legends of the area as well as driving to most of the important natural attractions in and around town. Or just indicate where you want to go—and you’re off.
New Clothes for the New Me
If you need some new outfits to go along with your new attitude on life, you won’t find any major chain stores in Sedona. So you’ll need to make a list and hit such establishments as Victorian Cowgirl, 181 Hwy. 179; Bilby and Moss, 7000 Hwy. 179; Wisteria, 211 N. Hwy. 89A and Favorite Clothing Company, 25 Harmony Dr. Each is independently owned and each has a different vision of what “stylish” means. See for yourself.
WHERE TO STAY
Amara Resort and Spa
Great location on the banks of Oak Creek; boutique resort with outstanding views. Rooms from $190/night. 100 Amara Lane
A luxury adobe hacienda with 12 suites in the heart of Sedona. Exceptional architecture, privacy and service. Near luxury dining and shopping. Suite from $179/night. 95 Portal Lane
Amazing views of Boynton Canyon and amazing services such as the spa combine to make a stay here an unforgettable luxury experience. And yes, there’s golf. From $350/night. 525 Boynton Canyon Rd.
Forest Houses Resort
Rustic hand-made cabins in the trees on 20 acres along Oak Creek in the canyon. From $90/night. 9275 N. Hwy. 89A
Sedona Rouge Hotel and Spa
Sophisticated property home to Reds Restaurant and lounge. Appointed in dramatic colors and rich fabrics with all amenities including fitness facility and private outdoor hydro-tubs. Rooms from $219/night. 2250 W. State Route 89A
WHERE TO DINE
One of the most popular restaurants in Sedona and for good reason, the gourmet takes on classic Mexican cuisine, Lamb Abodo for instance, are unique and memorable. A great bar helps ease the wait. 771 Hwy. 179, 928-203-0105
Rustic Italian and Mediterranean cuisine in an Old World setting. 7000 Hwy. 179, Tequa Festival Marketplace, 928-204-2000
El Rincon Restaurante Mexicano
In the splendor of Tlaquepaque, noted for its hand-rolled chimichangas and Navajo pizza. Dine inside or on the patio. 336 Hwy. 179, Tlaquepaque Art and Crafts Village, 928-282-4648
In the elegant Enchantment Resort with a fantastic view of Boynton Canyon. American cuisine, indoor and outdoor dining. 525 Boynton Canyon Rd., 928-204-6000
René at Tlaquepaque
In the upscale arts and crafts village, René is noted for American and Continental cuisine with a superb wine selection. 336 Hwy. 179, Tlaquepaque Arts and Crafts Village, 928-282-9288