Dec 222013
 

Las Noches de las Luminarias

Annual December exhibit at Phoenix Desert Botanical Garden

Last week, I blogged about Chihuly in the Garden Exhibit at the Phoenix Desert Botanical Garden. This week I returned to the Garden in the evening for Las Noches de las Luminarias, an annual exhibition during the month of December.

Luminarias light path at Desert Botanical Gardens
Luminarias light path at Desert Botanical Gardens

The garden paths are lit with more than 8,000 Luminarias bags. A luminaria is a traditional Mexican Christmas lantern, originally consisting of candles set in sand inside a paper bag. The bags at the Garden are not paper, but retain the look of a paper bag. The candles are all hand lit. The evening includes entertainment and refreshments.

Desert Botanical Gardens
Desert Botanical Gardens
Entertainment at Las Noches de las Luminarias
Entertainment at Las Noches de las Luminarias

The Garden has a number of terraces and sitting areas, where you’ll find the entertainers. You can sit on the chairs in the area and listen to the music, perhaps sipping a drink you purchased at one of the bars set up in each area, or wander through the park, listening to bits of music as you stroll. I heard a Mariachi band, guitar and violin world music, Apache story telling, and Christmas carollers.

Dickens Carollers
Dickens Carollers
 The Garden feels different at night than during the day, a more peaceful feeling. The music and the lights add a quiet, festive atmosphere. This year, the Chihuly exhibit made the evening extra special. I close with a few photographs of the Chihuly art work illuminated at night.
 

Chihuly in the Garden: Citron and Yellow Flori
Chihuly in the Garden: Citron and Yellow Flori
Chihuly sculptures light up entrance to Desert Discovery Loop Trail
Chihuly sculptures light up entrance to Desert Discovery Loop Trail
Chihuly in the Garden: Jade and Crimson Thorns
Chihuly in the Garden: Jade and Crimson Thorns
Desert Neon
Chihuly’s Desert Neon is set up in the mountain at the Gardens.
During the day, it looks like pieces of metal fencing, it comes alive with colour at night.
Chihuly in the Garden: Scarlet and Yellow Icicle Tower
Chihuly in the Garden: Scarlet and Yellow Icicle Tower
Chihuly in the Garden: Summer Sun
Chihuly in the Garden: Summer Sun
Chihuly in the Garden: White Tower
Chihuly in the Garden: White Tower
Chihtuly in the Garden: Sonoran Boat
Chihuly in the Garden: Sonoran Boat
Chihuly sculptures at entrance to Desert Botanical Gardens
Chihuly sculptures at entrance to Desert Botanical Gardens

Have you been to Las Noches de las Luminarias? Have you seen the Chihuly Exhibit? Do you like the sculptures better in the daytime or in the evening?

Note:Las Noches de las Luminarias is an annual event. The garden is filled with luminarias and entertainers. Refreshments are for sale. However, the Chihuly in the Garden exhibit was a temporary exhibit in the winter of 2013-2014.

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