Our Downtown Phoenix City Guide

Oct 05, 2017 | By New Darlings

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Spent some time last week around downtown Phoenix. It was the first area we explored when moving to Arizona and its amazing to see how it has developed in just four short years. It’s finally cool enough to take our bikes out and spend some time around Futuro and Phoenix Public Market, a few of our favorites. We’re looking forward to seeing what new places will be popping up around here as well. One in particular we’re super excited about is Taco Chelo. There’s a ton of apartment complexes that are going up, which many people in the community have some mixed feelings about, ourselves included, but it will definitely bring more people in, which we love.

We always feel bad when recommending places to people who will be making a trip to Phoenix, because its not super walkable. You need to drive, or bike at the very least, but with all these new businesses popping up, we’re hoping that will change very soon.

After a lot of back and forth we decided to break up our Phoenix city guide into a few sections, starting things off with some of our favorites in downtown Phoenix. Although it’s not a full official city guide, here are a few of our must-see places:

-Phoenix Public Market: The Rooster Booster for brunch is our favorite, with the fried chicken as our go-to dinner choice!

-Matt’s Big Breakfast: Just a heads up…be ready for a line on the weekends. Get the pancakes, you won’t be disappointed!

-Cibo: One of our favorite places for a date night. Start with the Arancini, followed by the Genova and/or the Margherita pie. Don’t leave without getting a nutella crepe!

-Pomo: This place always reminds us of New York when we go. Love the bruschetta for lunch.

-Pizzeria Bianco: The local greens and Bianco Verde, please. Back in our meat eating days, the Spiedini was our go-to.

-Gallo Blanco: They just opened recently and we’ve been going non-stop on the weekends for brunch. Get the migas or pancakes, or both! For dinner we recommend the fish tacos.

Side note: Check out Pueblo across the street from Gallo Blanco and grab a little houseplant. It’s such a cute shop.

-Welcome Diner: Love it here so much, plus they’re open late! There’s not too many of those in Arizona. 😉 The Bumble Bee is our personal fav, plus they always switch up their cocktail menu.

-Futuro: We always get two Tonicos + a pastry of the day!

-Songbird Tea & Coffee House

-Jobot: Great outdoor area to work with a cup of jo! Also open late!

-Giant Coffee: This is definitely a favorite to work from. Gotta love those honey vanilla lattes too!

-Film Bar: We used to go here a lot when we first moved to Arizona. They always had a DJ and the weekends were definitely fun. They also show films here too, hence the name. 😉

-Desoto Central Market: Great to grab some tea and toast. Also, a good place to bring your laptop and get some work done.

-Lola Coffee

-Hanny’s: Love the vibe here. It’s a little more on the expensive side, but they have some great cocktails and its a fun place to grab a drink with friends after dinner.

-Angel’s Trumpet Ale House: More of a pub style, laid back environment. Flatbreads are always great to share with one of their beers or wines on tap. They have a huge selection!

-Cresent Ballroom: Love this place for intimate shows.

-The Van Buren

-Valley Bar: Grab a drink, catch a show, play some ski-ball.

-Phoenix Art Museum – Free on Wednesdays and First Fridays. Check it out!

-Cobra Arcade Bar

Can’t wait to share more of our favorite places with you guys. These lists have been more than overdue. 😉 Hope you enjoy and it helps for your next Phoenix trip or weekend adventure!

Any places you guys love that we may have left out?

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Photos by Willow Greene.









11 comments on “Our Downtown Phoenix City Guide”

  1. This is so timely as my boyfriend and I are thinking of taking a trip to Phoenix from London. This guide is perfect, thanks.

    I’ve been reading about Arizona online and there are a lot of blogs that say there isn’t much to do and only to go for a couple of days, but we were thinking of staying for a week or so then driving to Texas or Vegas. It seems like there is so much to explore, would you agree?

    We plan to go over NYE and from Googling it seems that most places are still open over the xmas/new year period – is that true in your experience too?

    Any advice hugely appreciated!

    1. Kate, there is plenty to do in Arizona for a week! If it is your first time, spend some time in Phoenix/Scottsdale (so many great restaurants, golf courses and good shopping), but I would also recommend driving up to Sedona for a night or two (the red rocks are enchanting), and then continuing on up to the Grand Canyon. It is one of the seven wonders of the world! It will be cold up at the Grand Canyon in December/January, but still worth the view. You could head on to Vegas from there which wouldn’t be too bad of a drive.

      As an Arizona native . . .there is plenty to do here!! 🙂

  2. Giant coffee is a favorite. I also love the Palomar Hotel with the rooftop pool. And Royal Coffee Bar in the historic district is amazing and is close to Pizzeria Bianco!

  3. Had my wedding dinner at Pizzeria Bianco! And the whole Welcome family is awesome; I’m partial to Welcome Chicken and Donuts. We live in NYC, but my husband is from Phoenix, so we visit at least once a year and will check some of these places out next time!

  4. Thanks for the list! My husband and I just moved from LA to Scottsdale and are finding the transition very hard… we miss the beach and the weather! Any advice on how to adjust to the pace and life in Arizona?

    1. We moved from LA to Phoenix (Arcadia neighborhood) last year. Still adjusting and trying to meet more people but the lack of traffic is amazing and now that it has cooled off taking advantage of the outdoor activities like hiking (Piestewa Peak, Camelback of course and Papago park are favorites) & biking on the canals really helps. A few restaurants not mentioned here that we like are Chelsea’s Kitchen; Tacos, Tequila & Whiskey; The Henry; The Chestnut (breakfast or Ramen on Weekend nights); Okra Kitchen & Cocktails in Central Phoenix & Otro Kitchen in Central for Brunch. And getting out of Phoenix to explore Flagstaff, Sedona, Prescott, etc. is fun too!

  5. so in love with your photos!! I’m thinking of starting a blog with my boyfriend and was wondering how you two get amazing pictures together

  6. Hi guys! Love reading your blog. My husband’s family is taking us to the Grand Canyon this June. We will fly in to Vegas and circle up to Bryce and Zion, around the north rim and travel down until we get to Phoenix (9 days total!). We would love to hear any other recommendations for any of those areas that are super family friendly but from more of a local’s perspective!

  7. Headed to Phoenix this weekend and this post is giving me life! Where is this beautiful wall? I am dying to find it because it’s absolutely stunning.

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