Article in Gateway to Sedona

Sedona, Arizona:
Adobe Grand Villas Custom Doors - A Portal to Paradise


Though you do it countless times a day, each time you step through a doorway is a highly symbolic act. You’re demonstrating a willingness to engage in change, transformation, and perhaps even meet the unknown.

Doorways are symbols of home, hospitality and transition. In native Southwest architecture, doors were placed at the top of everyday and ceremonial structures to signify a “rebirth” every time one entered or emerged. When you travel, every doorway leads to a new experience, and each of Steve Berman’s magical doors at Sedona’s Adobe Grand Villas creates a threshold to a world of luxury, comfort and fantasy.

You’re greeted to this new luxury Sedona B&B by the main lobby door that frames, unbelievably, a graceful sheer waterfall behind a series of delicate copper vines, cradling luminous crystals here and there. It’s as if all the mystery, beauty and artistry of Sedona is captured in this threshold, and every visitor who crosses knows they are in for a once-in-a-lifetime experience.


Adobe Grand Villas is a new concept in high-end Sedona lodging.

Each of the 15 villas is over 850 square feet, creating a kind of private resort for each guest.

Inspired by themes from Tuscany, Provence, and the American Southwest, each master suite is a world unto itself, from the rustic Silver Spur villa, where the blonde pine furnishings fill the suite with a woodsy scent all the way up to the 20-foot ceiling, or the shabby-chic Country Garden villa, a pastoral fantasia of a bygone era. Inspired by each room’s theme, Steve Berman came up with a door design that sets the tone for the guests’ experience before they ever set foot in the room.

“I was inspired by the themes for each room, as well as a lot of local materials,” says Berman, who is a self-taught artist capable of creating what he calls “functional art” in just about any imaginable medium.

Local pine and Alligator juniper are featured in several of the doors and furnishings around the villa, all of which were crafted by Steve on-site. Materials come alive in his hands; whether it’s the subtle way the blonde pine of Whispering Pines glows with sunlight, or the kinetic energy of the water-powered Wagon Wheel door. With a flair for the theatrical, Berman also created a covered-wagon bed frame for this suite that will spark to life any latent cowboy fantasy you may have lurking beneath the surface.

Berman’s creative talents go beyond the doorway in every room at Adobe Grand Villas, extending to wardrobes, light fixtures, imaginative floor coverings and whimsical bath furniture. It’s apparent that this is no corporate, cookie-cutter resort the minute you step into the lobby, where every interior structure has a rich, handcrafted, organic feel, from the impressive fireplace enclosure to the built-in refreshment bar.

The creation of Adobe Grand Villas was a family effort, with Berman’s father Stuart at the helm for development and construction and his mother Ilene in charge of interior design. The trio previously worked together developing and building luxury homes in California before they decided to change gears and build this visionary Four-Diamond resort in Sedona, which has every amenity you could dream of, right down to bread makers, cheerfully filling each room with the scent of baking bread for the incoming guests. Steve is disarmingly modest about his work, but it’s clear that for his relative youth, he has a reserve of talent and vision more mature artists could only aspire to. “He’s fearless about trying a new material or technique,” says Stuart Berman, with obvious pride.

Adobe Grand Villas is for now the only place in Arizona where you an see Steve’s creations, but inspired by his work there, he’s opening a custom-door building business based in Sedona, where people can work with him to create unique portals for their own “resorts,” taking a little of Sedona’s magic home.

Gateway to Sedona Article