Plan the Perfect Phoenix Staycation

There’s magic to be found in the summer desert. Explore the region through Frank Lloyd Wright’s eyes and gain a new appreciation for the unique wonders of the Phoenix area.

For some locals, the only good thing about summer is catching up on your favorite shows and movies. Truth is, there’s plenty to excite body and soul even when morning temps are headed toward the triple digits. Discover some of the reasons Frank Lloyd Wright fell in love with (and built a home in) the Sonoran Desert — and rediscover your own love for the region along the way.

Photo: Ruth Link

Discover the Hidden Marvels of Taliesin West

Frank Lloyd Wright may have built his Scottsdale compound as a retreat from Wisconsin winters, but summer brings a rare opportunity. On weekend evenings through the end of August, the Night Lights Tour is an intimate glimpse into the life of American’s greatest architect, during which you can sit on the furniture, peek into the bedrooms, and imagine Mr. and Mrs. Wright presiding over black tie “Taliesin Evenings.” Plus, there’s a fire-breathing dragon. Morning birds can take advantage of a special summer rate for Arizona residents — the Insights Tour is 50 percent off through August.

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Photo: Andrew Pielage

Photo: Western Spirit Scottsdale's Museum of the West

Photo: Western Spirit Scottsdale’s Museum of the West

Celebrate the Western Spirit at Scottsdale’s Museum of the West

From Remington bronzes to John Wayne memorabilia, this Smithsonian affiliate is a rootin’ tootin’ overview of the American West. Along with the kind of romantic landscapes that inspired Frank Lloyd Wright are pop culture moments even casual visitors will appreciate, including, through Sept. 16, a blockbuster exhibition of Western movie posters. Check out special summer rates for kids.

Relax at the Iconic Arizona Biltmore

Turn a staycation into a playcation at this iconic resort where you’ll see Frank Lloyd Wright’s influence around every corner, from the stained-glass windows to geometric tiles. Families head to Paradise Pool for the 92-foot water slide, adult and kiddie snow cones, and dive-in movies; serenity-seekers gravitate to the lounges, spa, and a roster of quiet pools. Arizona residents receive exclusive discounts.

Photo: Arizona Biltmore, A Waldorf Astoria Resort

Three girls holding flashlights in the desert

Photo: Desert Botanical Garden

Explore the Desert After Dark at Desert Botanical Gardens

BYOF (bring your own flashlight) and embark on an after-dark expedition starring the sights and sounds of Wright’s cherished Southwestern landscape. The self-guided tour highlights the rambling garden’s night-blooming plants and nocturnal critters; celebrate afterward with a Cactus Cosmo at Gertrude’s, named for the garden’s original patron. Admission is free the second Tuesday of every month.

Special Offer for Arizona Residents at Taliesin West.

This summer, we invite you to experience Taliesin West on our Insights Tour. From June through August, Arizona residents can experience Frank Lloyd Wright’s home and desert laboratory for 50 percent off with code AZRESIDENT.

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Photo: Ruth Lin