Elevated Finds: 5 experiences to gift or to treat yourself to this holiday season

By David ArkinDecember 12, 2023April 30th, 2024No Comments

Elevated Finds: 5 experiences to gift or to treat yourself to this holiday season

By Scott Nishimura
Photo Courtesy of Canyon Ranch

Elevated Gift-Giving with West Magnolia Newest Retailers

It’s hard to find elevated retail on West Magnolia Avenue-let alone any kind of retail. But the four partners behind The Gifted Group want to help recast that narrative. The partners own two new boutiques, Gifted and Harmoni, (the wizards who teamed with 360West on this month’s cover), as well as Cafe Momento and its Point of View gallery and bookshop -all opened earlier this year in the new PS 1200 development at 1210 6th Ave., off of West Magnolia.

The Near Southside and its streak of idealism is a perfect fit for Gifted’s corporate values that include sustainability and inclusiveness, Esther Miller, says.

“What drew me first was the sense of community here,” Miller said. “I just love the historic aspect of (neighboring) Fairmount. I love the off-downtown aspect. It felt this was where we had room to add value.”

The gift shops sell everything from apparel to accessories for the home and entertaining, including bags, dining, glassware and tabletop wares, candles, jewelry, stationery, books, bath, blankets and rugs. The owners extensively interview potential vendors for a value fit.

That helps imbue the shopping experience with “inspiration and peace,” Miller said. “Because we are 100% values-driven, it takes a lot of work out for customers who are interested in that.”

Join Canyon Ranch Fort Worth Wellness Club

Fort Worth’s new luxury wellness experience, Canyon Ranch, opens in December at The Crescent Hotel, Fort Worth.

Owned by Crescent developer John Goff, the club will feature similar amenities as Canyon Ranch’s resorts in Arizona, California, Nevada and Massachusetts, including fitness center, spa and beauty services, and comprehensive consultations. “Limited memberships are available,” and applications go through an approval process, Canyon Ranch says. Memberships include a $5,000 initiation fee for individuals, $7,500 for doubles and $350 monthly dues per person.

Canyon Ranch is also known for packages including week-long “immersion” stays, where participants focus on aspects of health such as sleep. The Fort Worth club isn’t yet promoting those packages. But if you can’t wait, the Tucson resort is offering packages in the new year starting at $1,650 per night, per person,

Follow the World Champ Texas Rangers to Spring Training

It’s not too early for Rangers fans to start thinking about following their World Series champion team to 2024 baseball spring training. Ticket promoters are already hawking packages to Rangers spring training in Surprise, Arizona. But fans can easily build their own packages to throw in Santa’s stocking. Stay at the Arizona Biltmore- A Waldorf Astoria Resort, and choose from an array of accommodations including guest rooms and suites, cottages and villas. The resort is steeped in history. Its design is imbued with Frank Lloyd Wright influences. And sip a Tequila Sunrise at The Wright Bar, where the bartender is said to have invented the cocktail in the 1930s. Need something else to do while part of your gang treks from one spring training ballpark to the next? Tour Wright’s Taliesin West gem in nearby Scottsdale. Take in Phoenix’s Musical Instrument Museum and its massive collection of more than 7,500 musical instruments and associated objects from more than 200 countries.

Shop from NM’s Fantasy Gift List

If super-luxe is on your holiday wish list, Neiman Marcus’ 2023 Neiman Marcus Fantasy Gifts curation is here. For $510,000, Disney Animation is offering a once-in-a-lifetime experience to become an animated character as created by the artists at the Walt Disney Animation Studios. In addition to voicing the character, enjoy a private tour of the animation studios in Burbank, California, and be a part of special meet-and-greets and photo ops. You’ll get a digital copy of the short animated video, where your character makes a cameo appearance, and receive an invitation to a Disney film premiere in Hollywood.

Cook with Chef Tim Love

Chef Tim Love is never short on the experience, and gift-givers can throw it under the tree for Christmas morning. Love offers three experiences: “Meet & Greet,” which includes a 45-minute cooking performance and “specially-curated” three-course dinner, “Indoor Cooking Demo,” including preparation of a dish alongside Love, entrée prepared by Love’s catering team and an opportunity to mingle with Love during the dessert course, and “Grilling Demo,” in which you and your guests get to grill with Love,