Whether you’re in a state of argh, ugh, or similar, might I suggest a healthy dose of ahhh? To find this remedy, proceed directly to Sedona. There you will find the Amara Resort and Spa, a retreat within a retreat. Spa enthusiasts will, of course, want to book a spa treatment (as of the writing of this post it’s best to book six to eight weeks in advance). In addition to favorites like the Rain Dance massage—complete with lavender, rosemary, and sage oils concluded with a delectable warm-oil scalp massage—spa-goers can also take advantage of a relaxation and steam room. But, massages, facials, body scrubs, and other treatments aren’t the only ways to wind down at Amara.
READ ALSO: 15 must-see places for an Arizona road trip
As part of the property’s multimillion-dollar renovation, the Amara Resort spruced up its SaltRock Southwest Kitchen. The restaurant’s revamped interior features Himalayan salt accent walls, antiqued mirrors, and an open view of Sedona’s striking Cleopatra Red Rock Formation and Snoopy Rock. But, one of the key elements of Amara’s makeover is the extended bar area. The dark-wood, charmingly lit communal bar just as you enter the SaltRock, puts off an old school-meets-modern-craft-beverage vibe. And, what’s noticeable off the bat is the crowd. People of all ages gather at this intimate space for conversation and signature drinks. But it’s not simply the good drinks and company that draw folks to Amara’s bar, it’s the bartenders themselves, earning praise from visitors and locals for their cocktail knowledge and mastery.
The atmosphere surrounding the bar and SalRock restaurant—which by the way, has phenomenal food (I suggest the branzino!)-—is a microcosm of the entire Resort. Everywhere you look, someone is clearly at ease and clearly in their element. Amara, by far, has some of the best customer service I’ve encountered in the state. From Britney at the front desk to Britney in the restaurant to manager and assistant manager Nick and Nick (yes, they are four different people), the staff goes out of the way to help you—and I mean above and beyond. Again, guests of all ages looked to be enjoying themselves whether eating short rib tacos at the SaltRock or sitting by the infinity pool with a mojito. You have to actively try to not have a wonderful time at Amara!
And, for those of you who are considering getting married in Sedona, I encourage you to check out the beautiful balcony just off the upstairs meeting space (also parallel to the Cleopatra and Snoopy rocks). There’s also a lovely, cascading freshwater creek with walking paths and places to sit and relax backing the property. No matter the weather or time of day, this property provides gorgeous scenery and surprises.