Before I tell about this wonderful resort in Sedona, you should know this. Although Diamond Resorts is a timeshare, anyone can book this vacation extravaganza through Expedia or other online booking sites. Sometimes booking a timeshare is less expensive than booking a regular hotel room.
One more important fact. I’m not selling timeshares! We own a Diamond Resorts timeshare but have been many places, and this is one of our favorites.
A Perfect Day for a Walk
Vince and I ambled out of our spacious suite at Los Abrigados Resort in Sedona for a morning walk around the grounds.
Originally, T.C. and Sedona Schnebly built the first hotel on this site in Sedona in 1901. He and his brother settled here, planted an apple orchard and vegetable garden. The 1986 resort retains the flavor and charm of an earlier time.
We Found So Many Things to Love
View We left our room in too much of a hurry to take this picture this morning, so this evening I snapped the picture so you could see the red rocks from our patio.
Sedona’s red rocks vistas enthrall visitors wherever they turn.
Surrounded in three directions by the red rocks you can’t walk any path without your mouth ajar at the beauty.
Architecture Structures reflect the beauty of Sedona’s backdrop. Spanish and Pueblo-style buildings and fountains reflect the past, but the although it looks antique, the resort was dedicated in 1986.
This was the site of the first hotel, Sedona Post Office, and store. Today Suite 110 is the largest most elegant facility we saw on our resort walk. It would be a perfect place for an executive council meeting for CCSS, but I’m not on that council anymore.
On the left side of the building is a shady porch. Even in the summer, I think you would be cool here. The original Schnebly Hotel included 10 rooms, a rock chimney, and a shake roof. Tents and a bunkhouse outside housed some of the guests. The Schneblys sold their bunkhouse hotel, post office, and store in 1908, and it burned down in 1918.
Another beautiful suite is the Morris House. Of course, since that is my maiden name, I would love to stay there, but it is being remodeled. Phil Morris got the contract to build the new Abrigados Resort that opened in 1986. He has now been in business over 45 years with an unparalleled reputation as a builder.
Miniature Golf Course Vince and I haven’t played yet, but we had to check out each of the 18 holes. We heard the gentle waterfall at hole 11. However beautiful it is, par 3 was not a fair number to set for par. Can you see that narrow bridge in the center? Hmmm Trust me, take extra golf balls. There’s real water in the stream underneath it.
One piece of advice I have for you is not to get discouraged and lose your confidence because of hole 11 like I did the first time I played with my friend Jean.
Basketball, Tennis & Pickleball Courts For more activity, you can enjoy tennis, basketball, or pickleball. I hate to admit it, but I thought the holes in the shade screens were windows. I wondered why they were so high and so low. Vince explained patiently that they are to keep the cloth in place when it’s windy. DUH!
Pathways Along Oak Creek
We started down one path, but it ran out. Huge rocks line the smooth walking path.
The shallow creek meanders quietly right now, but at some point, the water has eroded the soil around the roots.
Seating Areas along Oak Creek
If you wanted you could play checkers or chess outside. You could choose between walking, chess or checkers, or sitting. Nobody played at 9:00. Usually, the pieces are sitting upright in their assigned spots. Someone enjoyed playing – until they didn’t, or the wind came up last night.
Bocce Ball Court Vince lost to me at this Italian game. We only played once. Hmmm. Maybe it did not challenge him enough.
Too many options for Vince. He led the way.
The Labyrinth You start at one end and follow the yellow brick road. Just when you think you’ve reached the Wizard of Oz, the blocks take a sharp turn and turns in the opposite direction.
The Bird Sanctuary The birds were shy this morning. Maybe Vince and I did not emit bird-loving vibes. We saw a crow fly in front of our noses on the road back to the suite. But by then my camera was sheathed in my pocket, and it was time for lunch. So birds, we’ll catch you later.
The Zen Garden Vince and I have too much Type A personality to sit down and zen in the garden.
“We need a rake. I’ll be they have a rake. Next time we’ll get a rake. Jason would spend hours here. Let’s go now.”
And as quickly as we walked in and I sat down to zen, we left.
Spoke N Wheel Restaurant Walking past the Morris House and the tennis courts we stopped to take pictures of the Spoke N Wheel Restaurant.
The group of women I went to Sedona with last fall all enjoyed this restaurant. Vince and I booked a reservation for Easter dinner just to make sure.
Last year Darlene and I decided we did not want to pay the price. Instead, we spent five dollars less apiece and had a lousy meal from the store, most of which we threw away. Vince and I did not make that mistake.
New Friends On the way to Schnebly pond from the Office we ran into friends we met at the pool the night before, Dave and Karen. We invited them to join us for brunch. Our one-hour luncheon turned into two and a half hours as we got better acquainted with this couple previously from Pennsylvania, but now from Arizona.
Heated Pool and Jacuzzi No resort is complete without a pool, so as we headed back over to the place we met our new friends the night before in the jacuzzi.
Vince stays out of the sun, although he would rather lie next to the pool all day in weather like Sedona this week. He had to be content to look over the pools from the patio above.
Tomorrow I’ll seek out the spa again. It relaxed me, and you never know what new friend you will meet next.
Schnebly Pond This pond was harder to find than we expected. Named after Sedona’s first family, it is buried between some of the units. After looking at the map, we figured it out.
At first, I thought ducks had found a nice shallow pond. Closer inspection taught me otherwise.
Next to Tlaquepaque Sedona’s Art and Shopping Destination
Though separated by a concrete overflow, Tlaquepaque seems like part of the Abrigados dream resort. Drawn by a beautiful rendition of “Sounds of Silence,” we crossed the pedestrian path to the mall. Michael Kollwitz recorded one of his CDs under the banyan tree in LaHina on Maui.
Vince loves to shop. OK, honestly, I do too on occasion. We had fun strolling through the cobblestone and brick roads ducking in and out of specialty shops.
After living in rodeo country for sixteen years, I found my first cowgirl hat in Arizona at Bennali’s.
While we picked from passion fruit, blueberry, pomegranate, cranberry, strawberry, apple and many other fruity kinds of vinegar, General Manager, Allison Wilson briefly explained the history of the Voss Fass Company.
All told, our resort walk lasted about an hour and a half or so trying out some of the fun things to do at Los Abrigados.
All day long, my husband who hates to leave home said, “I love it here.”
What’s not to love? This is a Diamond Resort membership resort, but you do not have to belong to stay here. You can book through Expedia or other online sites. If you come to Sedona, it’s the most beautiful of all the wonderful places we have stayed.
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It looks like snow but it’s 76 degrees, sunny with only a light spring breeze. The weather in Sedona on Easter weekend is about as beautiful as it gets anywhere in the world.
But we humans need some complaint, so for that, we turn to the cottonwood trees. As we admired the wind statues, one merchant launched her campaign against the trees complaining that they are maliciously firing thousands of sticky flakes into their store.
Once landed, the cottonwood snow sits quietly in bushes, spider webs and on the stems of the cacti like fuzzy socks.
Ordinarily, I’m not a big fan of cacti, but they are showing off this weekend for Easter. Statues guard Los Abrigados Resort where we stay in Sedona. Basket Lady Elder adorns herself for spring as well.
Next door to the resort is a bed and breakfast call the Portal. Even the roof sports wild purple flowers and is draped with hanging planters along the edge. Rose bushes brighten the corner of this award-winning vacation spot.
Los Abrigados furbished itself elegantly for the spring holiday. Happy Easter, my friends. 🙂
I met Barb Taub through the Happy Meerkatreviews who gave permission to publish their review of Barb Taub’s book, Do Not Wash Hands in Plates, on my other blog, Always Write. After you have a taste of Barb’s writing style here, you will want to visit her blog and buy her book. She is not only talented and funny, she’s extremely personable.
Never Smile at a Crocodile
by Barb Taub
“Never smile at a crocodile
No, you can’t get friendly with a crocodile
Don’t be taken in by his welcome grin
He’s imagining how well you’d fit within his skin”—Music by Frank Churchill and lyrics by Jack Lawrence for Peter Pan, 1953
Our driver—I’ll just call him S for reasons to be revealed in their own post once I’ve calmed down and stopped kissing the ground—wanted an early start to get clear of Bangalore before the real traffic hit. Jaya, who never met an early start she didn’t love, wanted us to be out the door by six. Janine and I just wanted to get horizontal and sleep through the alarm and possibly the next day or two. But after knowing each other for more than forty years, the three of us have worked out a foolproof approach to travel: we do what Jaya tells us. It’s simple, requires absolutely no effort on our part, and it works. Always. We left at six.
Most perfect breakfast ever at Kamat Restaurant on road from Bangalore to Mysore. NOTE: Jaya and I had eaten most of the jelabi before Janine got the breakfast picture, so we had to order another plate. I still haven’t come up with a reasonable explanation for that third jelabi order… [Image credit: this and all photos (c) Jayalakshmi Ayyer & Janine Smith, 2017. All rights reserved.]
We’d only been on the road long enough to get clear of Bangalore before pulling into Kamat, a beautiful roadside restaurant with open-air pavilions sheltering under trees. The hostess sized us up and informed us that we wanted the full buffet. Jaya sized up the line of people waiting, and informed her that we’d be ordering a la carte. Surprisingly quickly, our food appeared and my tastebuds fell in love. There might be a better breakfast than a deep-fried spicy donut vada served up on a fresh banana leaf, followed by the slightly tangy sweetness of glistening lace-swirled jelabi, and accompanied by coffee as the day brightens under the trees. But if so, I haven’t had it yet.
On the road again, we headed for Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary north of Mysore. We’d barely cleared the entry when all three of us yelled “STOP!” Driver S reluctantly pulled over and the three of us piled out on our respective quests. Jaya had seen a tiny bird who needed spotting. Janine had seen a statue of Shiva in midstream which needed photographing. I’d seen a herd of goats scrambling over rocks and banks which needed to be amateurishly captured on my phone camera.
Entry to bird sanctuary. Or, in our case, the first stop.
Lord Shiva keeping watch from midstream (the second stop.)
Kingfisher on waterlily. (Stop 3)
— Goats. Because, you know—goats. (Stop 4)
After a few more stops, we finally made it to the ticket booth. Of course, being India, the fees for foreigners (300 rupees) were five times the charges for residents (60 rupees).
Our entry fees duly paid, we wandered down to the water where we found rowboats waiting to take us on a tour of the sanctuary—at an additional fee-times-five for foreigners, of course. As the boat moved away from the dock, the ranger/rower pointed at a log and said a number of words, one of which sounded suspiciously like “crocodile“. I was just begging Jaya to tell me that meant large toothless bird in the local dialect when the log we were approaching opened one eye and grinned at us. I felt my need to view any more birds decrease with each stroke of the oars.
The family behind us had no such doubts. As the smallest kid ran back and forth rocking the boat, the father laughed, the middle kid demanded to know if that was a real crocodile, and the mother told him, “Why don’t you stick your hand in the water and see what happens?” I can only suppose either she thought her three kids were one too many, or they had started their vacation with several additional kids and were still winnowing the numbers down to acceptable odds.
I assume there were birds and bats around, but frankly, I was too busy watching for crocodiles to pay attention. I counted sixteen. No, seriously. Sixteen crocodiles that I could spot. But that might not have included stealth crocodiles lurking under the boat waiting for that kid to stick his hand in. I’ve seen Jaws…
Several trees were home to flocks of large birds including egrets, storks, and heron. There was even a tree full of bats. But I was too busy measuring the distance back to the dock—and wondering if I could make it while the crocodiles chowed down on that kid with his hand in the water—to really pay attention so there could have been lots more bird-related activity going on.
Painted storks and spoonbills
Actually, I do know that there were flocks of amazing birds and things out there because Jaya and Janine are made of much sterner stuff, and they happily snapped away several photos which I saw after we made it back to the docks about a year and a half later (ten minutes by my phone clock).
But I was too busy trying to put distance between us and those crocodiles, and explaining to Jaya that the sign she just noticed for an even longer tour of the croc-infested lake was a mistake and should be ignored at all costs.
Birds? Who notices birds where there are at least 16 CROCODILES waiting to chow down on chubby foreign tourists?
And that was just our morning. Wait until you hear what happened in the afternoon!
Author Bio from Amazon
In a former life before children in need of luxuries like food and college, Barb Taub wrote a humor column for several Midwest newspapers. When Child #4 joined her research staff, she veered toward the dark side and a career in human resources. Now an expat living in one corner of a castle with her prince-of-a-guy and the world’s most spoiled AussieDog, she enjoys travel, translating from British to American, and collaborating with her daughter Hannah on the Null City series.
K.L is a neuroscientist, educator, geocacher, Unitarian-Universalist, amateur violinist, and parent. She has always been fascinated by how people’s brains learn, and especially why this process is easier and more fun for some brains than others. This led her to get a PhD in Neuroscience, work in biotech, and then become a science educator and writer. She is from the San Francisco Bay Area.
Most people seem to know these houses because they were in a show that I never watched. I found out about them through geocaching. My family and I went into San Francisco for New Year’s Day and one of our first stops was this virtual geocache.
Virtual caches are a special kind of geocache that doesn’t involve finding an actual container. Instead, you go to the coordinates posted on the site and answer some questions about what you find there, and maybe post a picture of yourself at the location.
Virtual caches are often located next to famous landmarks, and can be useful in helping you get to know a new place, or when planning a sightseeing route while traveling.
In this case, the cache site was in Alamo Square Park, across from the houses but affording a good view (Alamo Square Park is also, I learned, the place where the family in the show I never watched had a picnic in the opening credits).
At that location, the doors were not particularly visible, so I had to get closer for this challenge. This meant I had to explain to my family about Thursday Doors. Fortunately, they’re used to weird mom things like that.