It owes its reputation to sculptor Donald Judd, who moved there from New York in the '70s to make minimalist concrete installations.
Other artists followed, ultimately leading to the establishment of the Chinati Foundation, which preserves these large-scale permanent installations by a number of artists.
It's also connected to the House of Hops (marked by an old neon sign that says "Kingman Club"), with a rotating list of 64 craft beers and 40 wines on tap.
For some Southern BBQ done AZ style, pop over to the Kingman is also home to a burgeoning (VERY burgeoning) wine scene, with tasting rooms for Cella Winery and Stetson Winery, both estate wineries with plots in northwestern Arizona, located just off Route 66.
Getting to Marfa is an exercise in patience and persistence, as even the closest airports, Midland-Odessa and El Paso, are still about a three-hour drive away, which may help to explain why only about 1,700 people have committed to year-round living. Spend some time on Highway 90 about 9 miles east of Marfa at the "official Marfa Lights viewing site" to maybe see the spooky "Marfa lights" -- glowing orbs that have been attributed to UFOs, paranormal activity, and...
It is (still) an artists haven on the edge of the Chihuahuan Desert, though the "hipster paradise" that was promised could very well have been its own undoing, and there are plenty of hand-wringing op-eds on this to prep you before your visit as a rank tourist who, you know, doesn't "get" Marfa. atmospheric reflections of automobile headlights and campfires. And since it took so long to get here, you might as well venture out.
There are wineries that produce wines from locally grown grapes, plus Moab Brewery, the town’s largest restaurant and only microbrewery, with a distillery opening soon.
There are several remarkably good restaurants like the Moab Diner, Desert Bistro, Twisted Sistas' Café, Milt's Stop 'N Eat, and Zax Restaurant. Fruit orchards, vineyards, and more than 20 wineries surround Grand Junction, making this city the center of Colorado wine country.
The area is making a name for itself, not unlike Marfa, as a refuge for experimental artists inspired by the surreal landscape of nearby Joshua Tree and who, you know, want cheap property.
Check out the Lancaster Museum of Art and History (MOAH), the Art Gallery at Antelope Valley College, and public art like MOAH's mural project.
Some are lushly landscaped mid-century modern architectural oases -- your Palm Springs and Palm Desert.
Others are crumbling, dust-to-dust ghost towns where Wild West booms once thrived -- your Bodie, California and Rhyolite, Nevada.
Black Bridge Brewery anchors: a three-barrel brewery that sells almost everything they brew straight out of the taproom -- so you can pretty much only get it here.