When looking for a place to relax with friends over a hand crafted cocktail, the first place that should come to mind is the Jade Bar at Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain. It used to be a tiny corner of the resort, but was expanded and remodeled in October of 2013 to accommodate its many guests, and provide a more modern feel. The plush, padded seats are extremely comfortable allowing you to kick back with your friends, or get comfy with a date.
The atmosphere of Jade Bar changes from day to night. During the day, the area is well lit with the help of a floor to ceiling glass wall. Not only does this wall let the light in, but it offers beautiful views of Camelback Mountain, and the resort. You can choose a seat on the couches next to this wall, or at the bar to have a conversation with one of the friendly bartenders. All bartenders at Jade Bar have had several years experience in their field before Sanctuary will consider them. Jade Bar is even known in the local bartender community as the place you want to work at.
At night when the sun goes down, the soft romantic lighting comes up at Jade Bar. Inside there is a drink rail right behind the bar that is actually made of jade itself. The jade is backlit casting a soft, greenish glow in the bar area. The outside patio is lit by bistro lights, and a small fireplace in the cooler months. One of the outside areas of Jade Bar is called Edge. Edge offers comfortable seating and overlooks the infinity pool and cabanas below. There are terry cloth towels hanging on the backs of the oversized green wicker seats, so if you’d like to head down to the pool, and back and forth, that’s definitely an option. While sitting on Edge, you’ll get the best views of Camelback and Mummy Mountain as well as the formation known as the Praying Monk.
On the other side of Jade Bar sits Elements. Elements is the premier restaurant of Sanctuary. The head chef is none other than Food Network celebrity chef and Iron Chef America winner Beau MacMillan. Jade Bar is proud to serve Chef Beau’s small plates. Everything from popcorn and edamame seasoned with the Japanese spice togarashi, to charcuterie boards, to salads made with some of the produce grown right there on the Sanctuary property.
The Sanctuary has their own gardens where they grow organic herbs, citrus fruit, and a greenhouse that produces melons and squash. Everything from the salad you just ordered, to the mint leaves garnishing your drink, to the orange juice is grown there and fresh squeezed every morning. Herbs include sage, rosemary, thyme, and basil. Every citrus juice and melon juices like honeydew are squeezed fresh each morning from the gardens. Jade Bar uses enough produce for their drinks and the small plates that they have a dedicated shelf in Chef Beau’s kitchen.
Of course, no one comes to Jade Bar just to eat! Jade Bar’s handcrafted cocktails are out of this world. Along with the standby’s, the cocktails change with the seasons. Try one of their original drinks called the Boticelli made with champagne and Ketel One vodka, the Honeydew Cucumber Sour made with Martin Miller Gin and house squeezed honeydew melon juice, or the upcoming Cherry Blossom. The Cherry Blossom is made with Yamazaki Japanese Whisky, and garnished with cherries that are imported from Italy. If you’d like to know about all the liquid creations coming up, you can sign up for updates on their website.
As if all this wasn’t enough, Jade Bar has “The Pour” the Valley’s only premium cocktail hour, raising the bar for Happy Hour daily from 4-7 p.m. If you’d like to make drinks as good as Jade Bar’s at home, consider taking a Mixology course. Each week a different type of alcohol is featured from tequila to gin to whatever the bartenders have up their sleeves. Reservations are required since the classes are limited in size so everyone has a chance to learn and taste their drinks. If live entertainment is your style, Jade has bands like Vinyl Station each Monday and Angela Ferrari on Fridays along with other entertainment different days of the week.
The very best part is if your happy hour leaves you feeling just a little too happy, you are welcome to book a room and stay for just a night, or however long you’d like. Some people enjoy Sanctuary so much, they never leave. There are seven private houses right around the corner. So make your reservation for the resort, or maybe just the Jade Bar and get ready to have the most unforgettable evening of your life.