Day Trip: Midtown Phoenix

Madison RutherfordMarch 25, 2021
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Speckled with sleek office buildings, chic luxury apartments, premier art institutions and plenty of top-tier places to score sustenance, Midtown Phoenix is a modish microcosm of the Valley itself. Spend a day sipping craft beer, gazing at art and grabbing a bite in this posh parish located between McDowell and Indian School roads and anchored by Central Avenue.

Photos by Diannie Chavez

3 Things To Do

Angela Ellsworth, Seer Bonnets: A Continuing Offense, 2009
Angela Ellsworth, Seer Bonnets: A Continuing Offense, 2009

A Phoenix Art Museum

Carve out some time to mosey through this capacious museum featuring artworks spanning various centuries, cultures and settings. Enjoy exhibitions such as Collective Inspiration, which compares the creative principles of fashion and art, on display through May.
1625 N. Central Ave.

B Kings Beer & Wine

Mickey Salem’s craft beverage emporium boasts more than 1,000 labels, ranging from ciders from Oregon to shandies from Salzburg, and saisons, pilsners, sours, porters and stouts from around Arizona. Stop by to build your own six-pack, fill a growler or pick out a rare bottle of vino. It’s a tippler’s nirvana.
2811 N. Central Ave.
C Margaret T. Hance Park

Pre-pandemic, this spacious public park was the site of popular events such as M3F, Noche en Blanco and the Phoenix Pizza Festival. It’s still the perfect place to set up a socially distanced picnic, plop down your yoga mat, play frisbee or walk your pup.
67 W. Culver St.

3 Places To Eat

D Ocotillo

Ocotillo’s industrial indoor-outdoor design allows patrons to enjoy the beauty of the desert –ocotillo plants and cacti prettify the property – while noshing on locally sourced fare such as smoked beets, burrata and heirloom carrots. A palatial patio strewn with garden lights and an on-site cocktail lounge encourage lingering.
3243 N. Third St.
E Pizza People Pub

Chill in a cozy Chesterfield chair or leather banquette. Whet your appetite with stone-oven pies, fresh salads, gourmet sandwiches and 10 types of mac and cheese. Wet your whistle with craft cocktails, local brews and a glass or bottle of wine. Admire the art-adorned walls. Indulge in happy hour any day of the week.
1326 N. Central Ave.

F China Chili

Munch on dishes in the Cantonese, Szechuan and Hong Kong styles and sip Asian-inspired cocktails. Vegetarians have myriad vegetable and tofu options, while Peking duck, lemon chicken and Mongolian beef will tempt meat-eaters. No matter your diet, delight in a dessert of lychee, mochi ice cream or fried bananas.
302 E. Flower St.

Photo Op
Japanese Friendship Garden of Phoenix

Stroll this urban oasis and snap pictures of its 12-foot waterfall, koi pond, penzai pine tree, miniature bamboo forest and tea house. The garden is an Instagrammer’s paradise, but any professional or commercial photography must be approved in advance.
1125 N. Third Ave.
Overnight Option!
The Clarendon Hotel

Extend your stay in style at The Clarendon, a modern refuge featuring a full-service spa, luxurious pool with cabanas and an on-site eatery serving inventive Latin fusion cuisine.
401 W. Clarendon Ave.