Blogger Staycation | Featuring The Graduate Hotel


Recently I was invited to attend an event at The Graduate Hotel in Tempe, Arizona; the college town of Arizona State University. This boutique hotel captures the charm and vibrancy of this young and fun college town and is located right across the street of ASU and within perfect walking distance of all the action located in downtown Tempe. The Graduate Hotel’s customer service is unparalleled! They’re accepting of pets, attentive and willing to accommodate any desire of their guests to make for an enjoyable stay. The Graduate Hotel offers complimentary bike rentals to cruise through the city, an outdoor pool open all year long, a fitness room open 24 hours, and a shuttle service. The Graduate Hotel was generous to offer me, and several other local lifestyle bloggers a cocktail mixing class, dinner at The Graduate’s restaurant Tapacubo, and a staycation with some of my closest local blogger friends! I had so much fun at The Graduate Hotel, and am so grateful for The Graduate Hotel for hosting myself, and some of my friends for a great time in the college town of Tempe!   


After meeting up with some of my best friends in the lobby of The Graduate Hotel, it was time for our cocktail mixing class by the pool! I spoke with both of the owners of the Iconic Cocktail Co, Matt and Kailey. They created their business from their love of mixology and the dive bar scene, starting their small business by making delicious cocktail mixers convenient to the consumer’s inventiveness and taste. Iconic Cocktail Co created local and flavorful cocktail mixers where you have the ability to be imaginative on how to mix up drinks, just add in spirit! The class featured Iconic Cocktail’s seasonal mixer flavor, Pinchuberry Peach Sour. Matt explained the Iconic Cocktail Co simple method on mixing flavorful cocktails and beverages; add 2 ounces of spirit, 1 ounce iconic mixer, and ½ ounce of tartness. Matt mixed up some powerful punch, and explained common techniques and tips of how to make the perfect drink to match your taste! We finished off the punch with some sparkling water, adding some simple carbonation for a refreshing punch on a hot day.


The gals and I decided to sip on some margaritas while enjoying fresh and flavorful Mexican cuisine at The Graduate’s Tapacubo restaurant, conveniently located with a view of the pool! Tapacubo serves fresh and locally sourced ingredients in all of vast array of cocktails and entrees such as salads, sandwiches, tacos and fajitas. Tapacubo is a Mexican, Latin inspired restaurant featuring specialty tacos, and flavorful fajitas but also accommodates their guests with a vast array of options that will suit everyone’s taste. I shared the Mas Nachos with the girls and it was loaded with pico, guac, and pepper jack cheese. I was so full from eating way too many nachos, and tried two of the sweet chili shrimp tacos! These tacos were stuffed with shrimp, crunchy with radish and shaved cabbage, spicy yet flavorful from the tangy pickled red chili sauce. I hardly had room from desert, but couldn’t resist when the girls ordered churros to share! From the first bite, I knew it would be hard to share because these are the best churros in Tempe. They were thick, dense and cut to dip into a sea salt caramel sauce. These churros have been in my dreams ever since. Who would’ve guessed The Graduate in Tempe would have some of the best churros in town?? You’ve got to check this place out on your visit to Arizona!

Here's some compelling items to try at Tapacubo:

  • Copper Kicker Cocktail
  • Mas Nachos
  • Steak Fajitas
  • Churros
  • Jalapeno Creme Brulee Cheesecake


Photo Credit: Stephanie Rosa