The Hermosa Inn Offers the Finest in Relaxation, Cuisine and Events
Author: Lynette Carrington
The Hermosa Inn Offers the Finest in Relaxation, Cuisine and Events
A Little Extra "Spirit" is Offered During the Month of October in Celebration of Halloween!
Anytime is a great time to stay at The Hermosa Inn in Paradise Valley. But, October brings a bit of a different angle because of the “spirit” of the iconic property. The Hermosa Inn was originally called the Casa Hermosa by owner, Alonzo “Lon” Megargee. Lon, as he was most commonly known, hosted friends at his homestead that is situated on six acres close to Camelback Mountain. Casa Hermosa served as the cowboy artist’s home and studio. Much has changed since the property’s beginnings in 1936, and it was renamed Hermosa Inn some years later.
Although the gorgeously landscaped hideaway has had a few owners and undergone recent renovations, the past has often been reported to be alive and well throughout various parts of the property. There have been multiple and ongoing reports of unusual sights, sounds and incidents that indicate that Megargee, friends, family, or others liked The Hermosa Inn so much, they simply never left. These spirits of the Southwest are friendly, if not playful, as we found out first-hand!
Scottsdale.com was invited to stay in a particular room that has been noted to have a higher amount of unusual activity than some of the others. The Grande Casita room was beautifully and tastefully decorated with a variety of Western-themed art work, large leather pieces of comfy furniture and substantial wood tables and stands that certainly lent to the feel that we were staying in someone’s well-appointed ranch home.
Where History Still Lives
“We’re celebrating our 80th anniversary this year, so our history dates back to the Old West, making us quite the spirited locale,” says Managing Director Steve Ast. “And while some guests specifically stay here because it’s haunted, we can safely say that all encounters have been friendly ones.”
Guests who book any room or room package at the resort between now and October 31, 2016 will receive a list of the ghost stories that have occurred throughout The Hermosa Inn grounds that will allow them to take a self-guided ghost tour.
In fact, when I checked into my room a little after 4 p.m., I put my luggage and purse in the bedroom and put a few of my items on a dresser. I took out my phone charger and searched for a good spot to plug it in to the wall. I chose a spot at the desk in the front room and plugged in the phone. I turned from the desk and unexpectedly heard 5-6 footsteps on the wood flooring in the bedroom. This wasn’t the floor creaking; it was distinct and unmistakable footsteps. Although I was certainly startled, I wasn’t frightened. I don’t want to give away what you might see or encounter at the property, but The Hermosa Inn is such a unique property, you will want to come and discover it for yourself.
The property is so quiet and tranquil, you’ll forget that you’re only minutes from Downtown Phoenix, Sky Harbor Airport and Scottsdale. The landscaping is gorgeous and includes many indigenous desert plants, foliage and cacti in surroundings that are not overly developed. In essence, you may think you have stepped back in time a little bit! Coffee or breakfast on your own patio is a perfect way to welcome the morning.
There are several different accommodation styles available at The Hermosa Inn – Rancho, Casita, Deluxe Casita and Grande Casita. My room was the Grande Casita. Its features include an 800-square-foot one-bedroom suite with an attached living room. The spacious room includes a king bed, walk-in closet, large walk-in shower and a pedestal soaking tub with Waterworks fixtures. The living room includes a leather sofa and chairs an additional television and phone, plus rustic Western-styled tables, art and a desk. Other amenities in the Grand Casita include a coffee maker, iron, ironing board, dual plush bathrobes and luxurious Citrus Sage shampoo, conditioner, shower gel and hand lotion.
Outside of the incident of hearing footsteps in my bedroom, the Grand Casita was completely quiet, private and relaxing, up until I decided to do a live broadcast from the room. About one minute into the video some knocking and crashing sounds could distinctly be heard. Although I couldn’t swear the sounds didn’t come from the adjacent Grande Casita, those crashes sounded like something falling onto the floor within my own room. I sent the Scottsdale.com videographer to check on the source of the noise, but he saw nothing where he heard the sounds. I’m still not sure where those sounds originated, but I was only curious, not scared. Perhaps it was Lon and his friends clamoring to see what I was saying about them on my video? I only had wonderful things to say and I would most certainly return to The Hermosa Inn at any time!
There are a total of nine new Deluxe and Grande Casitas being built right now that should be available by the end of 2016. This will bring the number of accommodations to 43. The exclusivity of The Hermosa Inn ensures a level of privacy and peace and quiet. Room service is also available in all rooms at The Hermosa Inn. For those that may not stay at the resort, LON’s at The Hermosa and a series of special events provide the opportunity to enjoy this pristine desert property.
LON’s at The Hermosa
LON’s at The Hermosa is a crown jewel at The Hermosa Inn. Simply put, it is one of the finest restaurants in the Valley. Executive Chef, Jeremy Pacheco is the culinary mastermind behind the property’s signature restaurant and the new fall menu just debuted on October 6. Fresh, locally sourced ingredients abound on the LON’s menu and Pacheco’s creative and unique integration of textures, engaging flavors and colors makes for outstanding dishes. Weather permitting; the patio at LON’s at the Hermosa is the place to be! A patio expansion at the restaurant will also make its debut sometime in November. Additionally, LON’s Last Drop, Hermosa Inn’s signature bar, will also show off its new re-model at the same time as the expanded patio.
A lovely selection of breads was presented to us as we enjoyed our pineapple mojito cocktails. The locally made Noble Bakery bread was served alongside a tasty lavash that included just a hint of ancho chili which provided for a slightly peppery finish. The mini-cornbread muffins included just a bit of piquillo pepper, providing an authentic Southwestern flavor. The whipped butter with just a touch of mesquite syrup and topped off with a bit of pink peppercorn was the perfect accompaniment to the bread selection.
Dinner started off with one of the most popular entrees at Lon’s, the Himalayan salt seared ahi tuna. The entrée-to-share is served raw and atop a hot Himalayan salt block. Hot enough to cook the ahi, guests can cook the tuna to their liking, or remove it quickly for a less-cooked version. The yuzo-soy sauce is exceptional and give the dish extra sizzle when poured atop the ahi while it’s perched atop the salt block and garnished with cilantro and pickled onion. Crisp rice cakes are served as an accompaniment.
I’m a huge fan of beets, so the smoked local beet salad was a highlight of the meal. The dish included several large beets and flavorful beets with Oregon blue cheese, Wilcox apples, pistachios and Pacheco’s famous chocolate vinaigrette. Even if you are not font of beets, this is one salad that will give you a new opportunity to enjoy the nutritious root vegetable.
The tortilla soup boasted just a kick of spice and generous pieces of tender, smoked pulled chicken, avocado and crispy tortilla strips. If you bring someone to LON’s at the Hermosa from out of town, this is a fabulous introduction to Southwestern inspired cuisine, especially with the cooler weather.
Our first entrée was the pecan grilled filet mignon with blue cheese potatoes, creamed greens, Nueske bacon and a kiss of red wine demi glace. As with every food item we had at LON’s at The Hermosa, quality shines through in every thoughtful ingredient. Our second entrée was the braised beef shortribs with green chili goat cheese polenta, roasted cipollini onions, wild mushrooms and natural au jus. The short ribs entrée included the best short ribs we had ever had anywhere and the “bed" of goat cheese polenta proved to be a compliment to the flavor palette of the dish. Probably because we have kids, my husband and I are compelled to try mac ‘n’ cheese when it is present on an upscale menu. The truffle mac ‘n’ cheese did not disappoint and since it is considered one of the “sides for sharing” menu items, it was easily enough for the both of us to enjoy. Other sides for sharing include tempura Maitake mushroom, crème fraîche mashed potatoes, bacon and Brussels sprouts and more.
Other exceptional entrees on the fall menu include sea bass and Kauai shrimp, maple leaf duck breast and Tristan lobster tail. The Tristan lobster tail is exceedingly rare to find on any menu, let alone in Arizona. Tristan lobsters are from the deep, cold waters of Tristan da Cunha in the south Atlantic, the most remote inhabited island in the world. The meat of the Tristan lobster tail has a remarkably sweet and succulent taste, with a texture unlike other lobster varieties.
LON’s signature cowboy candy bar dessert defies explanation. Decadent, entirely sinful, yet heavenly, dessert nirvana – These are all things that could attempt to describe this entirely unique dessert. The dessert includes chili-spiced ganache, marcona almonds, crispy feuilletine all wrapped in a thin layer of decadent chocolate with salted caramel sauce, and served with a petite scoop of caramelia ice cream. I can guarantee that you have never had a dessert quite like this one and it certainly speaks to the unique qualities of the property. Don’t forget to save room for the cowboy candy bar… It’s worth it!
Seasonal Events Calendar
The Hermosa Inn at LON’s at The Hermosa feature a calendar full of distinctive events to appeal to those who appreciate fine cuisine, the arts and culture. Here is a look at just a few of the events coming up:
Burning Tree Cellars Wine Dinner featuring Alessandro Stratta
6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 27, 2016
LON’s Exectutive Chef Jeremy Pacheco and Michelin-Starred Executive Chef Alessandro Stratta will join forces for the first time in the ultimate culinary experience. Each course in this five-course meal will be paired with wines from Arizona winery Burning Tree Cellars. $125++ per person
Arizona Wine Dinner with Gregory Wiener
6 p.m. Thursday, November 17, 2016
Executive Chef Gregory Wiener from Phoenix Marriott Tempe at the Buttes joins LON’s Executive Chef Jeremy Pacheco and his culinary team for a one-of-kind culinary experience to celebrate fall, paired with their favorite Arizona wines. $99++ per person
ART OF COOKING SERIES
Holiday Cooking and Wine Class
11 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 19, 2016
In this cooking class, you’ll learn to delight your holiday guests with a perfectly grilled holiday meal and impress them with your knowledge of the wines to complement the meal. $89 per person
Gingerbread House Cooking Class
11 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday, Decd. 17, 2016
‘Tis the season to be jolly and LON’s has the perfect way for guests to get in the holiday spirit, by joining LON’s chef on a holiday journey of creating their very own gingerbread house! Once the gingerbread house walls are built, creations can come to life with the endless, edible materials to use. This annual event is a festive holiday activity for friends and family that make a memorable tradition for years to come. Snacks and beverages will also be provided. This class fills quickly so please call (602) 955-7878 today to make reservations.
ARTIST IN RESIDENCE EVENTS
These salon style evenings include a reception followed by an intimate three-course dinner with wine prepared by LON’S culinary staff.
Adriana Trigiani, Best-Selling Author of “All the Stars in the Heavens”
6:30-9 p.m. Sunday, November 6, 2016
Beloved by millions, Adriana Trigiani is the author of 15 “New York Times” bestsellers published in 36 countries, including “All the Stars in the Heavens,” the blockbuster “The Shoemaker’s Wife,” the Valentine trilogy and “Lucia, Lucia.” Also the writer/director of “Big Stone Gap” featuring Ashley Judd and Whoopi Goldberg based on her debut novel, the film became the No. 2 Romantic Comedy of 2015.
“Known as the reigning queen of women’s fiction” (“USA Today”),“The New York Times” calls her “a comedy writer with a heart of gold”, her books “tiramisu for the soul.” In partnership with Barnes & Noble, join us to celebrate Adriana and her works which have been profiled in publications around the world including “The New York Times,” “Virginia Living,” “Publisher’s Weekly,” and “Readers’ Digest.” Book signing to follow.
Pre-Oscars Party with Robert Black
6:30-9 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 16, 2016
Join us as we get ready to celebrate one of the most fashionable nights in Hollywood right here in Arizona! An exciting night of glitz, glamour, and fashion fireworks comes to The Hermosa Inn with fashion icon Robert Black of Fashion by Robert Black. Bringing vintage red carpet couture to our exclusive Oscar celebration, guests will be treated to an evening of gourmet dining, wine, and a fashion show featuring some of the most elegant, vintage, one-of-a- kind, museum quality designs, found anywhere in the world.
Special guest and actor Susan Claassen will join legendary Robert Black, as she portrays celebrated Hollywood stylist and costume designer Edith Head. Claassen’s expertly researched, beautiful representation of Head is so spot on that it is said friends of the late Edith Head have carried on conversations with the actress while in character.
This very special night will be an evening filled with excitement, allure and simply gorgeous fashions – complete with a red carpet entry. Attire: cocktail attire or Hollywood glam. To RSVP, call LON’s at (602) 955-7878. For additional information about Robert Black please visit FashionbyRobertBlack.com.
Hermosa Inn and LON’s at The Hermosa are located at 5532 N. Palo Cristi Rd., Paradise Valley. For additional information, visit www.hermosainn.com or call (602) 955-7878.