and Maryvale—three of Phoenix's largest suburbs—share the common goal of providing families with security, convenience and small-town friendliness. Many working farms remain in the area, their green fields bringing life to the dusty landscape. This seamless blend of rural spaces and suburban amenities provides a welcome respite from the gritty aspects of city life.
With downtown Phoenix just 14 miles to the southeast, you can take advantage of the city's business and employment opportunities. Close proximity to Highway 101, Interstate 17 and U.S. Highway 60 makes it easy to travel throughout the metropolitan area.
Residents have access to good schools, restaurants and shopping, while at the same time they enjoy the beauty of nature and a variety of outdoor recreation. Whether you golf, hike or mountain bike, this area caters to your need for fun in the sun.
Schools in Outer Peoria/Glendale/Maryvale
School data provided by GreatSchools
Restaurants & Nightlife
Mixed in among the national chains clustered around the major shopping centers, you'll find some culinary gems. International cuisine possesses a large following, as does upscale American pub fare.
They say every dog has his day, and at the Nosh, the humble mushroom finally steps into the limelight. Rather than a salad bar or an oyster bar, this upscale restaurant offers the Mushroom Bar. Order either three small mushrooms as an appetizer or one large Portobello as an entree, and then choose from an entire menu devoted to toppings. Carnivores rave about the angry shrimp with its spicy tequila glaze, while vegetarians appreciate the creamy spinach Florentine. This unique menu draws a crowd, so be sure to make reservations.
When you think of Polish cuisine, you probably don't think of Arizona, but A Touch of European Cafe works diligently to change your assumptions. The cozy setting suits a casual lunch or dinner date, and the hearty home cooking warms you up on a chilly day. Ask for the Polish Sampler Platter, and share generous portions of pierogis, stuffed cabbage, kielbasa, and hunter's stew -- it makes the perfect introduction to traditional Eastern European dishes.
Special occasions call for a celebration at Glendale's premier steakhouse, Arrowhead Grill. Obsessed with perfection, chefs plan and plate each dish with precision, never overlooking even the smallest details. A mile-long wine list ensures that any dish you choose can be paired with the right wine to enhance its flavors. Order the Delmonico steak accompanied by a sinfully decadent lobster twice-baked potato. Remember to save room for the famous butter cake and homemade ice cream.
When a pizza craving hits, satisfy it with authentic Neapolitan pizza from La Piazza al Forno. Only the handcrafted brick oven can create the texture found in real Italian pizza crust. Choose pizza in its purest form -- topped with imported olive oil, sliced tomatoes, basil, and fresh house-made mozzarella cheese. Sit outside on the patio and imagine yourself on the cobblestone streets of Rome.
Glendale supports an unexpected variety of clubs, cocktail lounges, and pubs, but Peoria and Maryvale tend to house low-key corner bars. Relax with margaritas on the veranda at Salty Senorita, or share a bottle of wine and small plates at Old Towne Glendale Wine Bar. DJs keep the dance floor alive all night at Sage and Sand Grill, while local bands play outside on the patio.
History & Culture
Prior to the late 1800s, this area of the Salt River Valley was empty desert. Once irrigation canals were introduced, it thrived as a farming region. These cities all date back to the 1800s, but only recently have they become thriving centers of art and culture.
Peoria strongly emphasizes theater and performing arts and houses
both the Arizona Broadway Theater and the Peoria Center for the Performing Arts. With Broadway now in the Southwest, you don't need to visit New York City to see classic musicals such as Les Miserables and The King and I. The Center for the Performing Arts provides educational opportunities for all ages and hosts dance performances and symphonies.
Glendale puts its focus on public art, participating in IN FLUX—an initiative that places art installations in vacant areas throughout the city. Take the Public Art Driving Tour to see the installations. Additionally, the city's annual Chocolate Affaire sponsors a Plein Air painting competition wherein local artists set up their easels outside—within the city limits—and paint portraits or landscapes.
People typically drive to work and to run their daily errands, and they can park for free throughout Maryvale, Glendale and Peoria. If you drive to downtown Phoenix, you have to pay for parking either at a meter or in a garage.
Avoid driving by riding the bus or taking an Uber car, as you won't find taxis readily available.
Walking is not common in these towns, but residents frequently travel by bicycle. Municipalities manage bike lanes and paved paths across the Phoenix area, making the streets safe for cyclists. Phoenix was designated a bicycle-friendly city by the League of American Cyclists, and its flourishing bike culture extends to its suburbs.
The Valley Metro bus line is the only public transportation in the area, and you can find bus stops nearly everywhere. From the largest cities to the smallest towns, you can easily get there by bus.
Book your flights out of Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, but leave yourself plenty of time to make the 24-mile drive, as traffic frequently causes delays. If driving further afield, access nearby Arizona State Route 101(Loop 101), Interstate 10 and U.S. Route 60.
The cost of living in Peoria, Glendale and Maryvale differs greatly from one another, with Maryvale being the least expensive and Peoria being the most expensive. On average, a one-bedroom
apartment in one of these towns rents for $730 a month.
Gas prices in this area remain low at 15 percent less than the national average. Public transportation is also inexpensive—a bus ticket downtown will only cost you $2. At the local pubs, expect your beer to cost around $6.
Shop for grocery staples at nearby Safeway, Fry's Food or Food City locations, and procure exotic ingredients from a few ethnic markets. These towns sponsor several farmers markets—find one in Peoria's Park West, one in Glendale's Westgate City Center and one in downtown Glendale. Every Saturday, pick up produce, baked goods and handcrafted items while enjoying live music and free outdoor yoga classes.
Whether you prefer bargain hunting or shopping for designer duds, a local shopping center meets your needs. The Tanger Outlet Mall provides high-end apparel and shoes, and Arrowhead Towne Center contains popular department stores and discount chains. Known for its antique stores, downtown Glendale also houses a number of boutiques.
Pink House Boutique specializes in vintage-inspired home decor, apparel and accessories. Dresses in 1950s style fill the racks alongside quirky tops and outfits featuring sugar skulls, Hello Kitty and other niche designs. Find furniture and handmade jewelry mixed in with clothing and shoes, making every visit a search for buried treasure.
Bicycles need special care, and local cyclists trust Golden Spoke for repairs and maintenance. If your bike can't be saved, this shop stocks hundreds of mountain and road bikes—even recumbent styles. In addition, you can purchase accessories and gear at reasonable prices.
At Roka Boutique, designer denim takes center stage with a supporting cast of upscale clothing, shoes and accessories. Both men and women can find jeans that fit like a glove and make them feel amazing. When you need a showstopping outfit, let the fashion-forward staff help you turn heads wherever you go.
While numerous and well-maintained, parks in this area stick to the basics. Most contain playgrounds, paved walking trails and shaded picnic areas, but some provide more amenities. Cool off on the splash pad at Sycamore Groves Park, or rest in the tranquil butterfly garden of Camino a Lago Park. All of the parks welcome leashed dogs, but Foothills Park maintains a fully fenced off-leash area. Large and small dogs play in separate areas for safety, and a canine obstacle course is available for all dogs. Entrance to the park remains free, but dogs must be licensed.
The Peoria Sports Complex Park holds the All American Festival every July. One of the largest celebrations in the greater Phoenix area, this festival includes an air show, live entertainment, rock wall climbing and a hot dog eating contest. The night ends with a spectacular fireworks display set to music. Adult admission costs $5 and children enter for free.