Pros

  • Leading all-inclusive spa and wellness resort with an emphasis on spirituality
  • Rooms and suites are spacious and luxe with patios, cloud-soft beds, and signature toiletries
  • Huge Villas and Retreat residences come with big terraces, plunge pools, and full kitchens
  • Weekly catalogue of over 120 fitness, yoga, and wellness classes
  • Cactus Flower restaurant serves nutritious gourmet meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • Snack bar serves all-day snacks, smoothies, and juices
  • Full bar with cocktails and an excellent wine selection (though booze costs extra)
  • Exceptional spa fuses alternative healing with cutting edge treatments
  • Hands-on culinary workshops and cooking classes grounded in health and nutrition
  • Three beautiful pools include an Olympic-style lap pool
  • 24-hour modern fitness center
  • No tipping allowed
  • Airport transfers and valet parking included in the room rate
  • Free Wi-Fi throughout
  • Beautiful Sonoran Desert and Santa Catalina Mountain views from much of the property
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Cons

  • Hefty daily resort fees are added to the room rates
  • Many activities, such as aerial yoga, culinary classes, and equine therapy, cost extra
  • Alcoholic beverages cost extra
  • Strict policy limits cell phone and tablet use (a pro for some)
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Bottom Line

Set in the Sonoran Desert foothills, the all-inclusive Miraval Resort is a luxury wellness oasis where guests go to revamp their minds, bodies, and lifestyles. Stays are individually customized from a weekly catalogue of 120 fitness and yoga classes, outdoor activities, and eye-opening wellness workshops. The peaceful resort features three swimming pools, a cutting edge spa, and a state-of-the-art gym. Scrumptious gourmet meals and snacks fuel guests with health and nourishment, not deprivation. The 118 rooms and suites are like big cocoons of modern luxury, with plush neutral interiors and private patios. The priciest have huge terraces, private plunge pools, and panoramic desert views. Rates, and the resort fee, are steep and activities such as aerial yoga and horse therapy cost extra, as do alcoholic beverages. For a similarly upscale alternative with less spiritual emphasis, try nearby Canyon Ranch

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Things You Should Know About Miraval Arizona

Also Known As

  • Miraval Resort

Address

5000 E. Via Estancia, Tucson, Arizona 85739, United States

Website

Oyster Hotel Review

Miraval Arizona

Scene

Luxury wellness resort with rustic accents and a gorgeous desert setting 

The Miraval experience begins from the moment you arrive. Check-in comes with a delicious juice concoction, and each guest receives a Miraval tote complete with a catalogue of activities for that week, and a keepsake water bottle which can be topped up at any of the water  stations scattered around the property. As a wellness retreat, the hotel doesn't see many families. Solo travelers, couples, and groups of friends, comprise the bulk of guests. 

The resort itself unfolds amid a landscape of cacti, meandering pathways, manmade ponds, rockscapes, and soothing waterfalls -- with breathtaking views of the Santa Catalina mountains from much of the 400-acre property. Visually, the hotel has an undeniable desert-Southwest vibe, with a look that's both intentionally rustic and modern. Past the sand-hued adobe entrance, the lobby and dining areas unfold with earthy tones, and sharp contemporary furniture and artworks, creating stylish, yet minimalist spaces. 

Rooms reside in a series of adobe buildings, spread out in hacienda-style enclaves. Each is centered by a cactus garden courtyard around which rooms are set. The grounds embrace the beauty of the rugged desert setting with plenty of space to admire the view, including a labyrinth garden, and a mini-amphitheater where drum circles take place. 

The long list of classes, lectures, and workshops (not to mention on-site features) is geared toward providing a luxurious reset for its guests. From dawn desert hikes to equine healing, to celestial yoga, to fitness and yoga classes galore, there’s no shortage of healthy activity on offer. In fact, if it’s health, wellness, fitness, or yoga related, it’s probably at Miraval. That said, this is a wellness resort, with a particular emphasis on mental wellbeing and spirituality versus weight loss, though it's not unusual to check-out a few pounds lighter.

Miraval wants guests to switch off, so rooms come with sleeping bags for cell phones and use of electronic devices come with strict policies in public areas. The “Unplug… Be Present” mantra on staff name badges, and in the activities catalogue, provide gentle reminders to do so. 

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Location

In the remote Santa Catalina foothills, about an hour from Tucson

The resort sits in a remote location surrounded by the Sonoran Desert and rural residential developments, on the far outskirts of Tuscon. There are no restaurants or shops within walking distance of the resort, which is intentional, as the general idea is to remain on-site. Miraval nevertheless runs organized off-site hikes (at extra cost) that take place about a 30-minute drive east at Mount Lemmon. Regional cultural attractions such as the DeGrazia Gallery in the Sun (30 minutes by car), and the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum and Saguaro National Park (both around an hour’s drive) are both popular. It’s 40 minutes to downtown Tucson. Tucson International Airport will take 50 minutes to reach. Phoenix is about a two-hour drive away. Airport transfers and valet parking are included in the rates. 

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Rooms

Desert-chic rooms, plus high-end Villas and Retreat residences with terraces, plunge pools, and gorgeous mountain views

Miraval has 118 rooms, suites, and stunning private Villas, which were joined by a stable of 22 spectacular retreat residences in 2018. All units are luxuriously appointed with super stylish desert-chic decor. They’re also spacious, spanning anywhere from 400 square feet for the most economical room, to in excess of 3,000 feet in certain Villas and retreats. Entry-level rooms are subtly themed -- broken down into categories called Native Spirit, Dreamcatcher, and Sunrise -- and feature Native American textiles and artwork plus an abundance of soft hues like tan and gray and subtle color contrasts like light blue and lavender. All options include cloud-soft beds, flat-screen TVs, plush robes, mini-fridges, and Keurig coffeemakers, though higher categories have full-sized fridges and espresso machines. All units open onto private patios. Sunrise Rooms come with desert and mountain views. 

The suites have wood-beamed ceilings, raw-wood furniture, and tiled fireplaces, plus private terraces. Some have whirlpool tubs and outdoor showers. Villas are an even more stylish step-up, with full kitchens, washers and dryers, and living rooms with fireplaces. Cascading glass doors open up to terraces overlooking the desert, with infinity plunge pools and fire pits.

The retreats elevate the experience even further. Perched on the resort’s highest vista, these expansive residences come in four categories: Solace (studio), Reflection (one-bedroom), Unity (two-bedroom), and Gratitude (three-bedroom). Chic but subtle contemporary interiors come with sprawling open-plan layouts, private terraces with plunge pools or spas, full gourmet kitchens (in many), and spectacular mountain views.

Bathrooms are spacious and vary from category to category. They all have generous stone vanities, big walk-in showers, and separate water closets. Most Villas have multiple bathrooms, including a swank master bath with slate floors and walls, massive walk-in rainfall showers, double basins, and big soaking tubs. Retreat bathrooms are modern minimalist, with extra thick stone vanities and double basins, freestanding oval baths, and huge indoor/ outdoor showers. Signature Miraval toiletries are provided.

All options come with free Wi-Fi, but miniature sleeping bags are provided bedside, to encourage guests to give their phones a rest too. Housekeeping takes place twice daily.

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Features

A plethora of wellness/fitness classes and activities, spa treatments, and all-inclusive gourmet fare

Miraval’s rates -- which are steep, but all-inclusive -- include a dizzying array of innovative daily free activities such as yoga, meditation, and group fitness classes. For instance, yoga alone comes in numerous incarnations, such as aerial yoga, yoga hikes, celestial yoga, and floating yoga. Many activities, including lectures on health and wellness, are free of charge. For additional fees, the resort leads organized off-site hikes and activities such as horseback riding, equine therapy, fear conquering tightrope walking, and culinary workshops, such as gluten-free baking. What’s free and what’s not is all spelled out in the catalogue, on the website, and on digital touch-screens provided in common areas. 

Though grounded in health and nourishment, gourmet food doesn’t leave guests feeling deprived. Portions can be on the smaller side, in which case simply ordering more is not an issue. Cactus Flower Restaurant serves a buffet breakfast and lunch buffet (along with a la carte options), and a la carte gourmet dinner. Palm Court Cafe serves nourishing juices, smoothies, tea, espresso coffee, and grab-and-go snacks all day. Brave Bill Lounge serves cocktails, pre-dinner appetizers, and offers an extensive wine list, though booze costs extra. Meals can be arranged to go, and room service can be arranged. 

Miraval’s huge Life in Balance Spa is a major resort highlight. Expert therapists offer traditional massages, manicures, pedicures, and body scrubs, alongside Ayurvedic, Eastern, and alternative therapies, such as Thai massage, qi grounding, and crystal energy work. Native desert botanicals feature prominently. Some all-inclusive rates come with spa credits, but treatments otherwise cost extra. 

There are three swimming pools: the large Olympic-style lap pool with a beautiful mountain backdrop (located near the fitness center and this is where aqua fitness classes and floating yoga take place); the Spa Pool (located at the center of the property, features a pool bar serving cocktails, with plenty of non-alcoholic options, and daytime snacks); and the zen garden pool, which is much smaller and aptly seems to remain fairly quiet. There's also a pond with an acupressure stone walk. The fitness center is huge and state-of-the-art, with up-to-date cardio and weight machines, as well as free weights. 

A hefty daily resort fee includes amenities such as airport transfers. Wi-Fi is provided, but the use of electronic devices is ideally limited to guest rooms and must be silenced in common areas, with the goal of helping guests to unplug. The resort has a no-tipping policy, which also applies to valet parking. A range of beautiful meeting and event spaces cater to corporate events of all sizes. Private group dining can be arranged in various settings. A wash and fold laundry service is available for a fee.

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Best Rates

Amenities

  • Air Conditioner

  • Airport Transportation

  • Balcony / Terrace / Patio

  • Basic Television

  • Business Center

  • Cable

  • Fitness Center

  • Free Breakfast

  • Internet

  • Kids Allowed

  • Pool

  • Poolside Drink Service

  • Room Service

  • Separate Bedroom / Living Room Space

  • Swim-Up Bar

  • Tennis Court

Disclaimer: This content was accurate at the time the hotel was reviewed. Please check our partner sites when booking to verify that details are still correct.