About This Castle in the Desert

phoenix-point-of-pride

As of April 13, 2020, due to health and safety concerns related to COVID-19, all tours and special events at Tovrea Castle at Carraro Heights have been canceled through August 14, 2020. 

Refunds for all guests with tickets for the Full Flower Super Moon Tours on May 6 have been requested; no exchanges were available.  

Guests with Summer Twilight Tour Tickets had the option of an exchange (through May 8, 2020, 3 pm Arizona Time) or a full refund.  All requests for refunds and Fall Twilight Tour exchanges have been made.

Guests with Regular Tour Tickets had the option of an exchange (through April 10, 2020, 11 pm Arizona Time) or a full refund.  All requests for refunds and fall tour exchanges have been made.


She sits majestically atop the hill, patiently awaiting her guests who do not come. Tovrea Castle at Carraro Heights is an Historic Icon and a Jewel in the Sonoran Desert quietly glowing each evening as a beacon of hope in our uncertain lives – a way to make passersby smile – enchanting all who come under her watchful gaze. She holds within her 100+ years of Arizona History – the past, our present and the future – and the tales she tells are wonderful to hear, her charm enveloping all who see her.

Her guardians, Tovrea Carraro Society, are her daily companions, making sure her luscious Cactus Gardens are cared for and her wardrobe of Stucco and Stone stands strong. They continue to keep up with the demands of this lovely Lady of Phoenix, even without her much-loved visitors from far and wide.

But times are tough and with no guests or events, the dollars are tight to do all that she requires.  Yet, she has hope that they will open again soon to tell these new tales adding them to a rich and fabled story of surviving under the southwest sun – thanks to the generosity of the Fans and Friends of Tovrea Castle at Carraro Heights, who will help her maintain while she waits.

Thank you for helping Preserve Arizona’s History in Castle form!

Please Click Here to make Your tax deductible Donation.


Tovrea Castle at Carraro Heights is a “Jewel in the Desert” that has intrigued people in the Valley of the Sun for 90 years and is a Phoenix Point of Pride, an Arizona Centennial Legacy Project and on the National Register of Historic Places.

Why would anyone build a Castle in the middle of the desert in the late 1920’s and why is it still here today?

To answer this, just look at the unique cast of characters who were inspired by the property beginning in 1907.  The “Castle” continues to spark the curiosity of passersby, due to its unique location – now in the heart of the Phoenix metropolitan area – visible to all, yet secluded by the forty-four acres of preserved desert surrounding the structure.az-legacy-project-2012

Owned by the City of Phoenix and Operated by Tovrea Carraro Society, the primary attraction of the site is the Castle; a four-story, 5,000 square foot architectural wonder perched atop the highest point of the granite-rich property. Groomed cactus gardens and undisturbed natural Sonoran Desert flora cascade from the Castle, providing scenic backdrops and viewing opportunities throughout the established trail system.

Opened to the public in 2012, Tovrea Carraro Society invites you to tour the Castle and Cactus Gardens with our devoted team of volunteers – tickets must be reserved in advance of your tour. While you are visiting, pick up a few mementos in “Treasures at the Castle” Gift Shop located onsite in the Visitor Center.

All tours are Docent-led, with Guests exploring the Cactus Gardens and Outbuildings by tram before arriving at the Castle Main Floor and Basement.  The site is not available to explore without being on a tour.  All tours are a ‘go’ whether rain or shine, heat or cold.

Tours sell out months in advance, with few to no cancellations; walk-up ticket availability is very rare.  The property is not available to Visitors except by tour and may not be seen without a guide.

Occupancy limits and the historic nature of the site requires that the tour size be limited and tours must be booked in advance.  The number of tickets that you may purchase is limited for each type of tour.  Please check the information on each tour prior to purchase.  Regular Tours are held on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays; Group Tours on Thursdays and Special Events on Wednesdays.  The Castle and Grounds are ‘dark’ on Mondays and Tuesdays for maintenance, repairs and ongoing upkeep.

Due to overwhelming demand for tour tickets, Tovrea Carraro Society has determined that a Lottery Ticket System is the only fair mechanism for distribution of tickets to our Guests.

Initially meant to begin for the Fall 2020 regular tour tickets, the COVID-19 pandemic and the need to exchange regular tour tickets from the Spring to the Fall 2020, has changed the regular tour ticket time period for the Lottery Ticket System.

The launch date for the Lottering Ticket System has not yet been determined; if you are on our email mailing list for updates you will be notified – and always check our website for updates, too.

The Lottery Ticket System will now cover the Spring 2021 Regular Tour Tickets (January – May 2021).  Special Event Tours will NOT be included in the Lottery System at this time, but may be in the future.

Ticket_LotterySystem_Signup

If you are interested in adding your email to the mailing list for updates on this new Lottery Ticket System, please click here.  You are NOT signing up for the Lottery, itself, but will receive updates when it is open, policies for the Lottery Ticket System and other pertinent information.

Location:
The Visitor Center, starting point for all tours, garden days and events
5025 East Van Buren Street
Phoenix, AZ 85008

Directions:
From Arizona State Route 202 (Loop 202/Red Mountain Freeway) in Phoenix, Exit 4 (Van Buren/52nd St), turning west off the Freeway.

From Van Buren St, the Visitor Center is west of the Loop 202 on the south side of Van Buren St; just east of the Main Post Office.

Tour Tickets for January through May 2020 were released
ONLINE at 6 am Arizona Time on July 1, 2019.
Check for Tickets to Tour by Clicking Here.

 

new city tcs partnership logo