Space Age Restaurant in Arizona
Mother's Day Lunch in Gila Bend
You have to love the name of this restaurant.
And you have to appreciate the name of this town as well!
Why Did We Go?
This was not a big Destination Mother's Day Celebration. We were on our way from Alpine, CA to Tucson, AZ.
It happened to be Mother's Day, which meant I got a little extra say so in where we stopped for lunch. How could I resist this 1960's diner with the sparkly white paint job. In fact the blue tiles had glittery sparkles, too!
Where is Everyone?
It was sort of a bad sign that the place wasn't packed on Mother's Day. There was nowhere else do go in Gila Bend and who wouldn't want to bring their mom here?
I did have to grin when I walked inside, though. The modern spotlights were aimed at the colorful space mural and the counter stools were right out of the Jetson's cartoon show. The white dots on the shiny black floor made me feel like I was looking down into outerspace!
The menu had a friendly cover with a very exciting image of a flying saucer/coffee cup.
Inside the menu there was a write up about the history of the Space Age Restaurant and Motel, built in 1964. (postcard image from the internet) The futuristic design was created by Al Stovall, who at that time was affiliated with the newly founded Space program.
He owned a plastic factory among other things and was able to use factory mateirals to create some of the unique features, like satellite replicas on the roof. Mr. Stovall passed away in the '70's, but his family is still involved in ownership. The restaurant was rebuilt after a fire in 1998, so sadly some of the truly retro features are missing.
We were starved, so ordered quickly.
Don's hamburger didn't look terribly exciting, but the space age china that the burger sat upon, made up for that. Do make note of the etched glass behind Don. Planets and Spaceship!
I made sure to order a salad bar with my tuna sandwich and chili. That meant I got to go into another room with more wall art. Painted Rockets and astronauts, saucer style lamps, dramatic blue ceiling with dangling planets!
This shouldn't impress me since I can go to Space Center in Houston anytime I want. But it all seemed hysterically fun, out in the middle of nowhere in Arizona!
You can tell by the cheese that my chili was not served piping hot, but they were able to give it a little zap in the microwave, when I asked.
It still was only lukewarm, but I enjoyed my flying saucer plate so much that I hardly cared.
Time to Go
I'm glad we didn't drive 2 hours... or 2 days just for Mother's Day Brunch, because our dining adventure was over in about 30 minutes.
Which was just fine since we needed to get on the road. I wish we'd had time too stop in the motel lobby before departing. The lobby is underneath the saucer-like structure to the left!
I did make a purchase from the diner gift shop.
This very awesome Space Age mug is my most favorite coffee mug these days. I made sure to capture its image on some reflective foil to add some excitement to the photo.
When We Return
Don and I realize we may not have hit the restaurant on the best of days.
I have a feeling the people of Gila were doing what all families should do on Mother's Day. They were home celebrating with Mom. So we'll just have to return another time and maybe even stay at the Space Age Lodge!
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The Dining Blog
This is a blog about Dining Adventures. Sometimes, I talk about food. Below, you can read how this started.
On July 4th 2011, I set a goal to try 50 culturally diverse restaurants in one year! (I knew that was possible, living in the Houston area) I spent the year pulling in friends and family to join me, on some unusual dining adventures. I met some curious people, tried some scary foods and explored places and cultures I never would have otherwise. Even though I met my goal, I learned too much to end my adventures in dining. I have continued blogging about memorable dining adventures of all kinds, near and far... and all the discoveries and funny things I've learned along the way!
Locations and types of dining adventures, are listed further down.