After living in Phoenix for two years, I finally made it up to Sedona. Basically, a beautiful escape only a couple hours from the valley with cool(er) air, red rocks and a wonderful lack of intense brownness that plagues the heat-stricken valley this time of year.
My girl friends and I made it a day trip, with one of our first stops at Tlaquepaque: a lovely villa with local shops, galleries and eateries, emulating the culture of the town. I felt like I was in an excluded Spanish village during fiesta.
The trees softened the light and cooled the air. The mercado has traditional Spanish architecture with rolled terra-cotta roof tiles and iron balconies. My favorite parts were the narrow, staircases behind the storefronts to take shoppers to the second floor.
While I didn’t buy anything, we managed to meander in and out of toy, jewelry, clothing and bath stores before heading to brunch.
A lovely stop.