When you drive across bustling Oak Creek to Garland's in this heavily wooded, hushed little canyon, you're in another world and another time. It's a simpler world, far far closer to the original 1908 homestead-- now the lodge's kitchen--than to the garish commerciality of Sedona. It's an older time, too. As the lodge grew over the years, adding a few rustic cabins now and then, it retained a connection with the past. You feel, especially with no tv and no telephones, you've stepped into a time warp. Hello, 1955.
Although regular guests book and rebook, same time next year, and there's a somewhat clubby feeling, the management (Megann) couldn't be more welcoming and congenial. We stepped into a one-night cancellation, cabin 3 creekside, just above the busy creek and partly under a burgeoning apple tree-- a snug, varnished-log private nest, charming and spotless.
We took afternoon tea, chatted with guests, skipped the 6pm cocktail hour, and headed for dinner when the 7pm bell summoned diners. We'd mentioned our anniversary, and at our table for two a specially printed menu welcomed us and commemorated the occasion. Dinner and service were flawless: a southwestern theme supplied in part by the gardens and orchards on the property. Fresh red-chile bread, a fine vegetable-heavy tortilla soup, an enormous garden-fresh salad, beef filet with a light ancho sauce (the best I've ever eaten ever) and black beans brilliantly seasoned and wonderful calabacitas. Dessert, a tres leches cake, and the recommended wine, an Estancia '10 Meritage, perfect with the meal and well-priced.
Likewise, a swell breakfast. Apple cider from the orchards, a selection of fruit, an Oak Creek trout (terrif!) with corn fritters.
We hated to leave, but the lodge was fully booked. We'd been fortunate for our single out-of-this-world, unbeatable, unforgettable evening.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Historic Garland's Lodge is now Orchard Canyon on Oak Creek: Unique Cabins & Lodging, Orchard Canyon is a unique, historic and acclaimed American-plan Lodge cradled in Oak Creek Canyon. Open year-round. Relax & unplug with no TVs or phones. Afternoon tea, gourmet dinner and breakfast are included in most stays. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Garland`s Oak Creek Hotel Sedona
- Orchard Canyon On Oak Creek Sedona, Arizona