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Tempe Tourism Blog

Broadway Shows at ASU Gammage in Tempe

ASU Gammage
August 14, 2019

There aren’t many cities that play host to the best touring Broadway shows. We’re very lucky to have an impressive lineup of Broadway shows in Tempe, Arizona each year at ASU Gammage. The 2019/2020 Desert Financial Broadway Across America – Arizona series kicks off in September, with MISS SAIGON, an epic tale of love and war, and continues through the summer with a nearly one month long run of family favorite THE LION KING. It’s really exciting to have a few shows in Tempe this season that haven’t graced the Gammage stage before. SUMMER is a musical biography of the amazing disco queen, Donna Summer. MEAN GIRLS will bring Tina Fey’s now classic movie to life, which is absolutely “fetch.” And, COME FROM AWAY looks to be an absolutely charming tale of 7,000 airplane passengers who were stranded in a small town in Newfoundland on September 11, 2001, where fear and tension transformed into trust and friendships. Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, ASU Gammage is a beautiful landmark in Tempe and a terrific place to see a performance. ASU Gammage is located on the southwest corner of the ASU Tempe Campus, at Mill Avenue and Apache Blvd. If you choose to park near the theater, here are a few ASU Gammage parking tips. There is some construction in the area, so if you’re going straight to the show, we suggest arriving an hour ahead of time. However, we think it’s best to make a night out of it. ASU Gammage […]

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Get pizza by the slice at these Tempe restaurants

August 7, 2019

Find your favorite slice of pizza at these Tempe restaurants We don’t know about you, but we think pizza is always a good idea. It is typically a weekly, or let’s be honest, almost daily, part of our diet. These pizza joints in Tempe have stolen a pizza of our hearts and we think you need to discover your favorite slice, whether it be traditional or trending towards unusual. Sadly for us, we didn’t get to try every slice of pizza in Tempe (but we will), so we’ve compiled a list of the places that we did try below. That’s not where the list ends, however. You can also get pizza slices (for lunch) at Sacred Pi or Barro’s in south Tempe. Gus’s New York Pizza is another local favorite and just steps from the ASU Tempe Campus, they have the distinction of being open 24 hours a day. Or check out 414 Pizza in Downtown Tempe for good eats and a side of nightly karaoke. You gotta love that pizza places are aplenty in college towns like Tempe.  We’re going to try to keep the pizza puns to a minimum because they’re so cheesy but we can’t help but share these slices of heaven with you. After you read this, you’re going to want a pizza this!  Venezia’s Pizza 27 E. Southern Ave., Tempe, AZ 85282 | (480) 858-1660 Venezia’s has a few locations in the metro area, including one in Tempe on Mill and Southern Avenues. Their friendly staff serves up pizza by the slice for lunch […]

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These globally-inspired desserts put Tempe on the map

Dessert case at Arai Bakery in Tempe, Arizona
July 19, 2019

A treat for your taste buds Since gaining our independence in 1776, American ingenuity and love of sugar have joined forces to concoct amazing desserts that have helped make Americans’ waist lines great! Yes, apple pie, fruit cobblers, brownies, chocolate chip cookies and s’mores will always be favorites and a source of patriotic pride. However, there are always new, sumptuous treats from faraway lands to sample in Tempe’s myriad restaurants serving international cuisines. Here are a few globally inspired confections that will seduce your taste buds and expand your dessert horizons.    The Middle East- Baklava  Haji–Baba | 1513 E. Apache Blvd., Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 894-1905 Polish off a satisfying Middle Eastern meal of gyro or chicken shawarma plate with a piece of the heavenly Haji-Baba baklava. This classic Middle Eastern dessert is composed of delicate layers of phyllo dough, filled with chopped nuts and laced with a honey syrup. You can have  your baklava with walnuts, pistachios or cashews, or if you can’t decide on one type of nut filling, order the oh so regal Queen Baklava which is filled with all three. A piece of Haji-Baba baklava and a cup of their rich Arabian coffee makes an excellent afternoon pick-me-up that will keep you for going hours.   Italian – Budino al Cioccolato   Spinato’s Pizzera | 96 S. Rockford Dr., Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 967-0020 As with all things Spinato’s, the Budino al Cioccolato is amazing and a reason to go to Spinato’s other than for their equally yummy pizza. It’s arguably the best chocolate pudding, you’ll ever taste, especially if you love the dark chocolate and […]

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Arizona Day Trips from Tempe

Bearizona in Williams, AZ
June 24, 2019

Exploring the sunny state of Arizona is easy to do from Tempe, Arizona. Located in the middle of the state, Tempe is a perfect jumping off point to head north to the pines in Flagstaff, or south to Tucson for scenic desert beauty and incredible Mexican food. There are lots of fun destinations to explore on a day trip from Tempe. So, after a couple of days of relaxing, shopping, eating and outdoor fun in Tempe, stay an extra night to check out a great part of Arizona that you can see in just one day. Where should you go you ask? We are here to help! We have personally tested out several of our favorite day trips from Tempe, including great restaurants and stops along the way, to make your decision easy! Read the blogs detailing each excursion, watch the videos, and then pick the day trip that fits you best. Day Trips from Tempe: Apache Trail Loop – A day trip to Goldfield Ghost Town and Tortilla Flat along the Apache Trail Loop is perfect for those looking for not too much driving, great food and a taste for the Wild West. This is a great option for families with kids. Day Trips from Tempe: Florence – Within just over an hour, travelers can step into the peaceful space at St Anthony’s Greek Orthodox Monastery. Afterwards, drive just 10 minutes to the town of Florence for some good grub and a historic downtown experience. Day Trips from Tempe: Out of […]

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A Day at Arizona Mills

Arizona Mills in Tempe
May 23, 2019

Written by: Arizona Mills Between warmer weather, longer days and a break from school, summer is the season of adventure, and the perfect time to create lasting memories with family. Whether you’re an Arizona local or visiting Tempe on vacation, Arizona Mills – located in the heart of Tempe and just 15 minutes from the Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport – is the ultimate destination for fashion, food and fun. With more than 185 stores, diverse dining options and exclusive entertainment venues, the state’s largest indoor value-retail and entertainment destination has something for everyone to enjoy. Shop Beat the summer heat and treat your family to a shopping spree! As an indoor, climate-controlled center, Arizona Mills offers the ultimate shopping experience, with top brands at up to 70% off. Whether you’re looking for a flowy summer dress, the perfect jean shorts, a new hiking outfit, or already thinking about back-to-school clothes for the kids, you’ll find great deals at an impressive mix of stores including Levi’s Outlet, Gap Outlet, Nike Clearance Store, Tommy Hilfiger, Victoria’s Secret, Oakley Vault, Express Factory Outlet, Buckle, H&M, Forever 21, Children’s Place Outlet and the Disney Store Outlet. And with top brands like Steve Madden, Skechers, Vans Outlet, Crocs, Famous Footwear, Journeys, Foot Locker and more, Arizona Mills is a shoe lover’s paradise! Dine All that shopping can work up an appetite! Arizona Mills offers a wide variety of family-friendly dining options, whether you’re in the mood for a sit-down meal or something on-the-go. The […]

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Donut delights in Tempe

Hurts Donuts in Tempe, Arizona
May 3, 2019

We donut mess around when it comes to donut shop delights in Tempe  “You can’t buy happiness, but you can buy donuts and that’s basically the same thing.” – Unknown  — The Donut Competition  We thought it would be a blast to showcase some of Tempe’s most beloved donut shops and pin donuts up against one another, sprinkle to sprinkle in the [one of the] most important competitions of the year.  Of course, everyone in our office was willing to participate… no arm twisting here.  Round 1   The first go around, we were so fascinated with the donuts from local creative favorites, Donut Parlor and Hurts Donuts.    Donut get us wrong, we love a fun donut but flavor is just as important, if not more. Some categories that we considered while checking out these round pieces of joy were Most Instagrammable, For the Brave (and Willing), and Most Creative and Colorful.  These categories were kept in the forefront of our taste buds as we tried flavors like Strawberry Special K Cereal, S’mores and Maple Bacon. You read that right!    Conveniently located on your way to work is Donut Parlor – the strip mall location on Elliot near Priest Dr. doesn’t do justice for how awesome tasting the donuts are. You’re sure to be the office hero when you bring in a variety pack of these donuts. It definitely upped our popularity when we brought the donuts in to our office. Group projects and team collabs get a whole lot easier with we’re incentivized by donuts, agreed? Hurts Donuts is located near […]

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Tempe Celebrates Cinco de Mayo

Ghost Ranch Prickly Pear Frose 'Rita
April 25, 2019

Now that the end of April is here and May is on the horizon, there are a few things that will once again become prevalent on your social media feeds. First will come the pool photos or some other indication that summer is upon us (#summerbod2019), followed by the Justin Timberlake “It’s gonna be May” memes, that are for some reason still topical. But there is nothing, and I mean nothing, that compares to the amount of Cinco de Mayo photos that will start to come at you at full force. Before the FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) sets in, we have selected a few of our favorite bars and restaurants that will insure that you too will have an Instagrammable time. After enjoying all that Tempe has to offer, we encourage you to continue your celebration by taking the Valley Metro Rail from Mill Avenue and 3rd Street to Washington and Central Avenue for the Cinco de Mayo Phoenix Festival on May 5th. Downtown Tempe El Hefe Tempe 640 S. Mill Ave., #110, Tempe, AZ 85281 (480) 257-2797 Tequila, beer, margaritas…oh my! Serving both as a yummy taco joint and as a hopping nightlife spot, El Hefe has everything you need to party all weekend long. Try the guacamole and queso to get your appetite going, and of course the street tacos are a must here. El Hefe takes standard ground beef tacos and amps them up to a new level. Try the Duck Carnitas, Beef Cheek, Chicken Tinga […]

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Explore Tempe during ASU Graduation

ASU Tempe campus bridge
April 18, 2019

Graduation season at Arizona State University (ASU) is upon us and that means students are transitioning from adolescent college years into mature (hopefully employed) alumni. And parents, well… you’re probably more focused on how many tissues you will need to get you through the ceremony. Pro tip: about 75 tissues come in one box of Kleenex, so two boxes should suffice. You’re welcome. Let’s be real, ASU graduation in Tempe is a momentous occasion for both parents and students alike. And although this should be a joyful time, we know that wrapping up your college experience can get a bit stressful. That’s why we are here to give you the 411 on how to get the most out of your graduation week! Where to eat For all of you soon-to-graduate students, you’ve got your cap and gown and now your diploma is in hand (well, they actually mail you your real diploma). So, it’s time to C-E-L-E-B-R-A-T-E good times, come on! Rejoice in this big accomplishment with all your friends and family at these Tempe restaurants. Any special occasion in a Sun Devils’ life starts and ends with House of Tricks. Located just steps from Mill Avenue, House of Tricks is hidden inside two charming turn-of-the-century homes, behind a vine-strewn courtyard. Their private dining areas and patio can accommodate all your family and guests. And, their menu is full of creative and delicious dishes that you’ll remember long after you finish your meal. Top of the Rock is a local […]

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Tempe has a latte of great coffee spots

Crepe Bar coffee in Tempe, AZ
March 22, 2019

Tempe has a latte of great coffee spots and per usual I have a ton of puns that I could relate to this…but I won’t. I mean, I can’t espresso to you how brew-ti-ful Tempe is this time of year with a cup of joe in hand. Okay, I will stop, but seriously Tempe is the hub of great coffee. We ask you to step away from the “Bucks” (Starbucks), and seek out the best coffee in Tempe at these local cafes. Cartel Coffee Lab 225 W. University Dr., #101 | (480) 621-6381 Tempe’s coffee claim to fame would have to be Cartel Coffee Lab. Their first shop opened in Tempe a few years back and they now have seven locations, including Phoenix Sky Harbor, Tucson and one location in Palm Springs. Their empire is growing and that’s a very good thing. Cartel’s espresso is top notch and their flavors are out of this world. Each type of coffee is curated and sourced responsibly from countries including El Salvador, Colombia and Rwanda. This coffee shop gets straight to the point with limited menu items, but don’t be fooled, these coffee connoisseurs can whip up just about anything. Don’t feel like leaving your house to get Cartel coffee? No problem. Subscribe and they will deliver it wherever you would like. Now you can Netflix and brew! Press Coffee 601 W. Rio Salado Pkwy., #103 | (480) 794-1107 1221 E. Apache Blvd. | (480) 566-5380 Ever wonder how coffee starts from a […]

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Celebrate National Pi (Pie) Day in Tempe

Squarz Bakery & Cafe in Tempe
March 11, 2019

Celebrate National Pi (Pie) Day at these favorite Tempe spots Whether you’re celebrating the glorified National Pi Day (3.14) or looking to satisfy a craving or just something different to consume, we’ve got the best pies in Tempe! From savory hand pies to classic fruit pies to a play on words with pies, we’ve got them all. Here are some great places to get pie in Tempe on National Pi Day or any other day that ends in ‘y.’ Definition of pie: a baked dish of fruit, or meat and vegetables, typically with a top and base  Cotton & Cooper: Traditional pie can be found at the ever-cool Cotton & Copper in South Tempe. Their innovative drink inspo compliments the exquisite taste of their pies. Chef Tamara Stanger has really crushed it in the pie game taking grandma’s classic dish and kicking it up a notch. Check out her latest creation: Brown Sugar Peanut Butter Cheesecake Pie with Dark Chocolate Whip. Mind = blown. 1006 E. Warner Rd., #113, Tempe, AZ 85284 (480) 629-4270 Cornish Pasty Co: A name you don’t naturally think of when it comes to pie… but we’re looking at the definition. We love food that you can hold in your hand so why not call upon a great hand pie from Cornish Pasty Co. like the Lovely Bit of Salmon or the Greek (available with chicken or as a vegetarian dish). Y-U-M. So good you must separate “yum” to emphasize the flavor boasting from their handcrafted delights. 425 S. Mill Ave., #111, Tempe, AZ 85281 (480) 629-4726 Squarz Bakery & […]

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