October 26, 2012

Top 5 Places to Make Out in Phoenix

by: Taz Loomans


When I was in Mexico City a few years ago I was taken aback at the number of young lovers making out everywhere – in parks, plazas and on sidewalk benches. The amorous were everywhere! I realized that there are lots of public spaces in Mexico City that are perfect for smooching. What makes a spot perfect for smooching you ask? It’s romantic, it’s inspiring, and it’s beautiful. It’s a place you can actually hang out for a while, relax and and feel comfortable. And oddly enough, a perfect place to smooch offers privacy in a public space through anonymity, through the presence of other people, through activity and vibrancy around you.

In the past few weeks, I’ve been noticing places in my local travels that I think would be great spots for smooching. Here are the top 5:

5. Hance Park on a Winter Afternoon

Last weekend I biked through Hance Park with friends Carl Metz and Brenda Eden. We had to stop in the middle so Carl could fix his tire and I noticed this beautiful cluster of trees near 3rd avenue, right off of the Willo neighborhood. It was beautiful, serene, and so marvelously shaded! It provided a perfect amount of privacy with the trees, and felt far away from the hustle and bustle of the city even though it’s right smack dab in the middle of it. Sitting under one of these trees making out with your sweetheart would definitely be one of the better ways to spend a weekend afternoon. The only caveat is that the mix of people at Hance is still skewed towards the homeless, so it’s not super comfortable for the rest of the population to hang out there yet. Hopefully the upcoming revitalization of the park will change this, not necessarily by getting rid of the homeless, but by attracting more of the rest of the population to use the park regularly. And once this happens, this park will become a primo location for lovers.

4. Tempe Town Lake on a Fall Afternoon

You can’t get better than sitting on a shaded bench in front of a lake on a fall afternoon. Tempe Town Lake is a wonderful, but underutilized, recreational amenity in the Valley. There’s water, there’s trees, there’s public art, there’s pathways for jogging, walking, biking, and there are benches to take a break and take it all in – what more could you ask for? What would make Tempe Town Lake really fantastic is if more people used it. But it’s still a great place to get your cuddle on no doubt.

3. The Summit at South Mountain All Year at Sunset

Photo from Wunderground.com.

I first experienced the sunset at South Mountain 22 years ago when I was here for a visit. The drive up the mountain was beautiful, and the summit was the perfect climax to it. Sitting on the rocks overlooking the city during sunset is a unique Phoenix experience and the ultimate place to make out. Because so many people know about this special spot, there are usually plenty of people around, especially around sunset, which makes it a really wonderful place to put your arms around your date and enjoy the view – or not ;).

2. Peritoneum in the Summer after Dark

Photo by Brenda Eden.

Last month, there was a Places, Spaces and Faces Community Dinner at the RO2 Lot. With the new patch of grass there, it was a wonderful place for us to sit on the ground, eat our food and chat with friends. It was one of the first really beautiful nights after a hot summer and it felt wonderful to be outside with friends. A few of us walked over to the Peritoneum on the east side of the lot which is a lovely piece of inhabitable public art equipped with benches. The wavy meandering structure provides a woozy sense of mystery, especially after dark, and it would be quite an experience to exchange kisses in there!

1. Sky Space at Sunset

I visited the Sky Space, a collaboration by artist James Turrell and architect Will Bruder, yesterday at sunset. This spot gets top billing on the list because it’s a world-class installation of public art and architecture. Moreover, it meets all of the criterion for the perfect place to make out. It’s romantic, it’s inspiring, and it’s beautiful. It’s a place you can actually hang out for a while, relax and and feel comfortable. Sitting on the cool black bench, leaning back on the perforated metal wall and watching the color of the sky change is an incredibly romantic experience to share with your guy or gal. (Look for my article on the Sky Space coming soon!)

Photo Credit: All photos by the author unless noted otherwise in the caption.

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8 Responses

  1. Bill Mc says:

    I’ll suggest a 6th, Hunt’s Tomb at Sunset…

  2. matt says:

    Willo does not abut Hance Park. That’s Roosevelt.

    Geography aside, my vote is for the firefly installation at PAM.

  3. Hunter says:

    Don’t sleep on the desert botanical gardens. One of most beautiful spots in the city..

  4. Esteban A says:

    Bill Mc beat me to it. Hand’s down Hunt’s Tomb. And if you time it right, no need to stop at “making out.” That is a love-making spot. Just sayin’

  5. Steve Weiss says:

    Arizona Falls.

  6. Steve Weiss says:

    Encanto Park.

  7. It may be too obvious a choice, but how about near the giant Robert Indiana “LOVE” sculpture on the grounds of the Scottsdale Civic Center?

  8. Will Novak says:

    DBG is the obvious #1 for me. My girlfriend and I went there on our 1st date and are still together. Its not really a ‘public’ space though.

    If I was going to cast a vote for a romantic park, its easily Civic Space and Encanto over Hance. The dead grass in Hance combined with the crowd of homeless doesn’t really scream romance to me.

    Murphy Bridle path is also a nice, romantic place to take an evening walk. As is any street in a historic neighborhood lined with a consistent canopy of palm trees (i.e. Portland St in Roosevelt).

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