Downtown Tucson, Arizona

City of Tucson skyline with snow on the Santa Catalina Mountains.

It probably doesn't surprise you that Tucson has some funky hotel options.  

Whether you're planning for an influx of in-laws come the holidays or just longing for a weekend away, you've got plenty of options outside of the resorts nestled in the foothills and budget hotels in town.

You can play tourist and stay downtown or head to the hills for sweeping desert views. If vintage decor is your thing, check out spots like Hotel McCoy, the Downtown Clifton or El Pais Motel to see decades-old properties beautifully restored. We want to stay at all of these places. 

Glamping at Tanque Verde Ranch

The national company Under Canvas is bringing glamping to Tanque Verde Ranch in December. 

The new-to-Tucson experience at Tanque Verde Ranch, 14301 E. Speedway, is like camping without the work. With rates starting around $170 a night, you can spend the night in a safari-style tent on a mattress with plumbing nearby (or even in your tent!). Tanque Verde Ranch partnered with the national company Under Canvas to make this happen, so you'll also get access to the hotel's amenities during your stay. Tents will be available between Dec. 13 and April. 

Visit for more information. 

Hotel McCoy

The hotel opened in 1970 as the Silverbell Inn. It is named for the McCoy Mountains near the Arizona-California border.

Once the Silverbell Inn, the newly renovated Hotel McCoy on the southwest side at Silverlake Road and I-10 opened in October. With rates around $100 a night, Hotel McCoy has all the mid-century modern vibes a traveler could want. Plus, everything is local — the art in the lobby, the wine and beer, the coffee. All of it comes from Tucson. 

Visit for more information. 

Chuparosa Inn Bed and Breakfast

The Chuparosa Inn in Madera Canyon south of Tucson is your ideal cabin in the woods. 

This place looks like the castle-treehouse of your childhood dreams. A bed and breakfast tucked along a creek in Madera Canyon, the Chuparosa Inn has four rooms starting between $200 and $275 a night. You must book at least two nights. The inn, 1300 S. Madera Canyon Road in Green Valley, has an enormous wraparound porch perfect for bird watching, reading and tea sipping. 

Visit for more information. 

El Presidio Inn Bed and Breakfast

The El Presidio Inn Bed and Breakfast has a lush garden and wraparound porch where we would love to spend the day. 

Stay here and step back into historic Tucson. Just north of the Tucson Museum of Art, El Presidio Inn Bed and Breakfast at 297 N. Main Ave. is a Victorian adobe with four rooms and a garden courtyard. Plus, home-cooked breakfast every morning. Room rates start around $140 a night with a two-night minimum October through May. If you've always wanted to live in an old Tucson adobe this is a much cheaper way to do it!

Visit for more information. 

Arizona Inn

Visit this piece of Tucson history to take in the festive décor, take a portrait by the fire or unwrap gifts in the library.

The Arizona Inn has a backstory we love. The inn was founded in the 1930s by Arizona's first congresswoman and a BFF of Eleanor Roosevelt, Isabella Greenway. Greenway started the inn as a way to keep the World War I veterans who worked in her furniture shop employed during the Great Depression. Today, the inn, 2200 E. Elm St., has all of the amenities you'd expect from a fancy hotel, plus a library that will make your holiday dreams come true with its gigantic Christmas tree and cozy fireplace. Rates start around $180 a night for a standard room. 

Visit for more information.  

Hotel Congress

One of the many bars and hot spots along the route of the Tucson streetcar is the Hotel Congress located at 311 E Congress. The photo was taken on Thursday, Feb. 27, 2014, in Tucson, Ariz.

The downtown icon has 40 hotel rooms, plus a club, restaurant and event space. You won't get bored here (that also means it will be loud late, just FYI). This hotel, 311 E. Congress St., also goes way back — to 1919, in fact — and definitely preserves its historic ambiance. The hotel is right on the Sun Link streetcar line, so you can get all the way to the University of Arizona or the Mercado San Agustín without a car. Explore downtown without commuting back to the suburbs. Rooms start around $100 a night. 

Visit for more information.

Cat Mountain Lodge and Roadside Inn

All rooms have access to open-air community courtyard, which is desert flora-rich, at the Cat Mountain Lodge.

Head out to the desert to stay at an inn owned by the queen of Buffalo Exchange, Kerstin Block. You can choose the lodge with its central courtyard or the smaller inn across the street with its wraparound porch and room dedicated to Frida Kahlo. The inn just opened a few months ago but the lodge has been around for years. Way out on the west side near Old Tucson and the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, this place, 2727 S. Kinney Road, offers a Tucson experience — an eco-friendly property, southwestern decor and desert vistas. Plus, there's also an observatory, vintage and artisan shops and a cafe near the inn. Rates start around $150 a night and dip in the summer. 

Visit for more information. 

El Pais Motel

Peter Muller, left, and Tony Docekal, from the Netherlands, enjoy a snack in front of the silver-sided trailer they stayed in the night before at El Pais, a vintage trailer motel, located at 3445 E. Benson Highway.

Until mom Toni Story and daughter Jade Josey started fixing it up, El Pais Motel was a motel and trailer park with its best days behind it. But not anymore. The mother-daughter duo is transforming the motel, 3445 E. Benson Highway, into a mid-century modern mecca with restored vintage trailers and funky motel rooms. The motel isn't open yet, but the owners — who are doing much of the restoration work themselves — hope to open in January. 

Visit for more information. 

Downtown Tucson Clifton Hotel

Sergio Huerta walks near a mural by Danny Martin as the renovation progresses on The Downtown Clifton, 485 S Stone Ave. 

Another restored property downtown, the Downtown Clifton adds modern flair to western style. This is another property that celebrates all things local, so you'll see that reflected in the art displayed around the property. The building was constructed in the 1940s. The hotel is also expanding, adding 22 new rooms, a kitchen, bar and more public space. Room rates start around $109 a night. 

Visit for more information. 

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