Jewel of the Desert

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					FAMOUS PROPERTIES

Jewel of the Desert Distinct history and architecture make
the Biltmore Resort an icon in Arizona

diANA MiREL IS   With a rich history and one-of-a-kind artistry,       gold-leaf ceiling in the lobby that still remains
A CONTRIBUTING   the Arizona Biltmore Resort and Spa in Phoenix        the second largest gold-leafed ceiling in the
WRITER TO JPM.
SEND qUESTIONS   offers guests more than golf courses and pools.       world, second to the Taj Mahal.
REGARDING THIS   The resort is, in fact, a tribute to Frank Lloyd         “The ceiling is comprised of 36,000 square
ARTICLE TO
MARKISAN NASO
                 Wright, one of America’s most illustrious archi-      feet of individual four-inch squares that were
AT MnasO@ireM.   tects. Every inch of the 80-year-old resort show-     hand-applied by artisans on scaffolding,” said
OrG.             cases Wright’s influence.                             Thorn.
                    Wright’s student, Albert Chase McArthur,              Management staff at the resort have main-
                 built and designed the Arizona Biltmore in            tained the ceiling over the years. After a fire in
                 1929. The Arizona Biltmore was McArthur’s             the 1970s, the original ceiling artist was brought
                 first hotel project, and the property still remains   in to train people in restoration and preserva-
                 the only existing hotel in the world with a           tion of a gold-leaf ceiling.
                 Wright-inspired design.
                                                                       Part art MuseuM
                 icOnic architecture                                   Along with its architectural beauty, the his-
                 Referred to early on as the “Jewel of the Desert,”    toric artwork scattered throughout the resort
                 the Arizona Biltmore’s design complements             transforms the property into an art museum of
                 its awe-inspiring desert surroundings. Wright         sorts. The “Saguaro Forms and Cactus Flowers”
                 advocated “organic architecture,” a concept that      stained-glass window by Wright sits promi-
                 dictates all parts of a design should relate to       nently in the lobby welcoming guests.
                 the whole. He applied this concept by adopting           Throughout the resort’s gardens sit the
                 indigenous materials and influences to make his       Biltmore Sprites, some of the most eminent
                 structures become part of the landscape rather        pieces on the grounds. These slender statues of
                 than dominate it.                                     ethereal spirits are often referred to as the “lost
                    McArthur applied Wright’s organic vision to        children of Frank Lloyd Wright.” They were
                 the resort by constructing each building of the       conceived in 1914 by sculptor Alfonso Iannelli
                 resort with Biltmore Blocks—pre-cast blocks           for a project Wright was working on in Chicago.
                 made from desert sand. There are 34 different         In 1985, six
				
DOCUMENT INFO
Description: With a rich history and one-of-a-kind artistry, the Arizona Biltmore Resort and Spa in Phoenix offers guests more than golf courses and pools. The resort is, in fact, a tribute to Frank Lloyd Wright, one of America's most illustrious architects. Every inch of the 80-year-old resort show-cases Wright's influence. Referred to early on as the "Jewel of the Desert," the Arizona Biltmore's design complements its awe-inspiring desert surroundings. Wright advocated "organic architecture," a concept that dictates all parts of a design should relate to the whole. Along with its architectural beauty, the historic artwork scattered throughout the resort transforms the property into an art museum of sorts. By respecting its past and embracing its future, the Arizona Biltmore has maintained its status as an oasis of luxury, both locally and nationally.
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