A Festival That Brings Hollywood to Arizona

A storied hotel's mouth-watering 2nd annual festival in the desert
Festival fireworks
Arizona Biltmore

Festival fireworks

When you think of Arizona, images of Hollywood and celebrity wine tastings aren’t necessarily the first to pop into your mind. The Arizona Biltmore’s 2nd annual Hollywood and Wine Festival should change that.

A summer of Hollywood-themed events, the hotel announced the 2nd installment of this festival because of last year’s enormous success. From Memorial Day to Labor Day, the hotel will have your social calendar booked solid with concerts, themed movie nights, live theater, and wine tastings.(Photo courtesy of Flickr/oafbot)

With such headliners for their live concert series as Randy Newman, the Jeff Bridges Band (pictured below), and the Fab Faux (a renowned Beatles tribute band), it’s clear the Arizona Biltmore isn’t screwing around. Their themed movie dinners include Chocolat, which will be screened with a dinner of dark chocolate lobster “cappuccino,” mole braised short ribs, and white chocolate butter prawns, and Moonstruck, screened with chicken tetrazzini and orange polenta cake.

“Shakespeare at the Biltmore” will feature a short run of both “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and Oscar Wilde’s “The Importance of Being Earnest,” as acted by the Southwest Shakespeare Company. Or, if you’d rather pull back the curtain on how Hollywood really works — guests can attend workshops with Hollywood makeup artists, set designers, and costume designers.

Then, for those who’d come for the wine and stay for the wine, the festival will feature celebrity wine tastings (think wines from Paul Newman, Coppola, Fess Parker, and Arnold Palmer) and four-course dinners with expert pairings. Chefs in the group should attend the series of Inside the Chef’s Studio courses taught by celebrity chefs and cookbook authors.

The festival’s events are mostly open to the public, while some are for hotel guests only. During the festival, the Biltmore will be offering discounted rates, starting at $119 for a classic room.


(Photos courtesy of the Arizona Biltmore, unless noted.)