Talking Rock near Prescott in Arizona is unusual among communities designed with the active adult in mind in that it has no age restriction. It’s also unusual because it features only larger homes—the smallest is almost 2,000 square feet—at a higher price range.
Houses start in the mid $400s and go up into the mid $1Ms, indicating how desirable this community is. The quality of its amenities is another reason why prices are so high.
This joint development between Symmetry and Harvard Investments began in 2002, and there are now 611 single-family homes in this exclusive development. Talking Rock is about a 30-minute drive north of the small city of Prescott, a popular vacation destination in its own right especially for Arizona residents in cities like Phoenix and Tucson.
The smallest homes in Talking Rock are 1,960 square feet and have two to three bedrooms, two-and-a-half to three bathrooms, and a two- or three-car garage. There are 16 models available in all, with the largest providing 2,879 square feet of living space, three bedrooms, either two-and-a-half or three-and-a-half bathrooms, and a two- or four-car garage. There are also some slightly smaller models at 2,665 square feet which offer four bedrooms, for buyers wanting more rooms but less square footage.
Some of the homes also have customizable options. Ranch Cottage models, for example, can have the garage extended to accommodate three cars, while the Outlaw Collection can have a bunkhouse and extra patio space added if desired. Buyers purchasing in the Dorn Homes Collection can customize their finishes.
Talking Rock has both its own restaurant, Morgan’s Bar and Grill, and COOP’s Coffee Shop, a popular neighborhood gathering spot. The coffee shop also sells groceries and a few other items, though the nearest stores are about a 20-minute drive away. It’s also a full-service bar if you want something stronger than an espresso, and it has a book sharing library as well. The restaurant holds regular wine-pairing meals throughout the year—a gourmet experience with the number of places limited to 42 people.
Among the other amenities is the Fitness Barn Center, where residents can take part in several classes including yoga, tai chi, self-defense, spinning, pilates, and indoor cycling. The spa here offers services including massages and facials. There’s also water aerobics in the pool.
For sports enthusiasts, Talking Rock has its own 18-hole golf course, with a putting green, a chipping area, and a practice area. There’s also an outdoor pool as well as trails for hiking and biking. In addition to horseshoe pits there are courts for tennis, basketball, bocce, pickleball, and shuffleboard. There are also several clubs, including a Hiking Club and a Bike Club.
Another popular feature is the Community Garden. This has twelve plots available, and a lottery is held each year to decide who has them. The only charge is a small fee to pay for water usage. There’s catch-and-release fishing for bass and bluegill in the Windmill Pond, though only when the golf course is not being used as it’s next to both the 9th and 18th fairways.
One of the greatest advantages of Talking Rock is its location in Northern Arizona. It’s a straight 30-minute drive into the center of Prescott, a former mining town that's now a popular tourist destination. It has lots of historic buildings, museums, an eclectic range of shops, and a good choice of restaurants and bars, including the oldest bar in Arizona, The Palace Saloon on Whiskey Row. Prescott also has several scenic lakes on the edge of town with a network of attractive hiking trails.
Talking Rock is also little more than a 10-minute drive from the Prescott National Forest, an area of 1.25 million acres in all with eight designated wilderness areas and dozens of campsites, some with cabins. As well as hiking and biking, the forest also offers horseback riding, climbing, watersports, and fishing. Birdwatchers can keep busy looking for osprey, bald eagles, peregrine falcons, and many other species.
There are countless scenic drives in the forest and elsewhere nearby. One of the best is through the Prescott Valley, heading up and over a zig-zag mountain pass to the small town of Jerome. It’s another former mining town, now reinvented as an artistic community with plenty of craft shops, galleries, and places to eat and drink. The community of Talking Rock has a great deal to commend it.