By Susan Lanier-Graham
This year for Mother’s Day, take a break away from home and experience some of what makes Arizona such a special place. Not only is this a great way to see the state, it’s an ideal way to spend time with the entire family and tell mom, “I love you.”
JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort & Spa in Tucson
The JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort & Spa in Tucson is on 50 acres at the foothills of Tucson National Park. When you arrive at the resort, you find yourself completely surrounded by saguaro-covered desert, with the city in the distance.
There are guided hikes on the trails, pools and lazy rivers for relaxing, and the elegant Hashani Spa that features ancient traditions inspired by the indigenous people of the region. The spa pool is perfect for yoga or some quiet relaxation. The resort is known for its complimentary daily rituals.
Start each day with the Mitakuye Oyasin ritual on the Salud Terrace. Set to Native American flute music, greet the sunrise by creating your own intention, burn a sage prayer tie, and receive an eagle feather blessing in the centuries-old tradition.
Each evening, head back to Salud Terrace for a tequila toast along with stories of Tucson’s colorful history. Mom will thank you as she sips tequila and watches the sun slowly set behind the mountains. jwstarrpass.com
Wine Weekend in Jerome
Jerome is a historic copper mining town south of Flagstaff that sits about 5,200 feet above sea level. Some say the entire town is haunted, and it is certainly one of the most unique
towns in the state. Enjoy local wineries, art galleries in converted garages, and a selection of restaurants and cafés.
Book a stay at The Surgeon’s House, originally built in 1917 for Jerome’s Chief Surgeon, but lovingly maintained today by Andrea Prince, who will whip you up a healthy breakfast each day using fresh ingredients from her own cookbook. The gardens at The Surgeon’s House are relaxing spaces, perfect for reading or reflecting. If you can tear yourself away, amble down the hill into the small shops and boutiques that offer everything from antiques to handcrafted items.
Check out the tasting rooms for some great Arizona wines. Stop by Caduceus Cellars and sample their Nagual Del Marzo Sangiovese Rosé from Yavapai County. Another fun tasting room is Cellar 433 that features bottled microbrews, tasty cheese trays, and fabulous valley views. azjerome.com
Mother’s Day Celebration in Historic Downtown Glendale
Every year, Historic Downtown Glendale celebrates mothers with a special event on the Saturday before Mother’s Day. This is a great way to honor Mom with a day of special meals, great deals, shopping and fun activities. From 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on May 13, families are encouraged to spend quality time exploring the historic downtown together – and celebrate with this year’s Aloha theme.
Begin your day with a visit to the Glendale Visitor Center to pick up an event map. Many of the area restaurants and shops will feature sales and discounts. The first 250 moms will receive a beautiful Hawaiian flower lei as a way of saying thanks. visitglendale.com
Brunch at Queen Creek Olive Mill
Share brunch with Mom in the grove at Queen Creek Olive Mill in Queen Creek, south of Phoenix. This family-owned olive farm grows more than 7,000 trees organically, producing olive oil that is available for purchase along with vinegars, olives, and tasty olive tapenades. There will be a special Mother’s Day Brunch menu served all day on Mother’s Day, May 14, from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Moms will get chocolate-covered strawberries as well as complimentary wine tastings.
While you experience the beauty of the olive farm, you can take a tour of the olive oil process, listen to live music by the Chris Putrino Band, and order up a Mum-mosa, Sangria or Bloody Mary. While there is a charge for brunch, admission to the grove is free. Bring along a blanket and chair, but no outside food or beverages are allowed. This is a great event for families, and pets on leashes are welcome in outside spaces.
Susan Lanier-Graham is a Phoenix-based freelance food, wine and travel writer. You can follow her adventures looking for “wow moments” online at wanderwithwonder.com
Main photo courtesy of JW Marriott Starr Pass.
Find more travel destinations at greenlivingaz.com/travel