Ogden’s Rainbow Gardens, a one-of-a-kind tourist destination, is a new place to add to your bucket list. Nestled at the mouth of Ogden Canyon, the eclectic venue welcomes visitors seeking gifts, food, and fun.
The place has a history, and is a gem passed down from generation to generation. In the late 1800s, it was the Ogden Canyon Sanitarium Resort, and tourists came from near and far to soak in the pools.
In 1938, Ogden’s mayor, Harmon W. Peery bought the resort. He later turned it over to his daughter and son-in-law, Rosanne and Bob King. It once was a night club with indoor and outdoor pools, a ballroom, and a bowling alley.
The creativity of the King family has no limits. What was once the indoor pool is now the Gift Garden, an area filled with exotic plants and patio decor. It is the favorite room for plant lovers. Every year the owners change the themes. This year, it is butterflies.
The main gift shop, Rainbow Gardens, fills the ballroom where young and old once gathered for marathon dances. The shop has an array of gifts from around the world, and visitors will find everything from crystals to t-shirts, Utah stickers, unique notebooks, travel bags, fashion accessories, and totes from Vera Bradley.
The handmade candles and candies are visitor favorites. The shop currently sports rainbow candles in different shapes. Patrons can also buy handmade honey and syrup, and Rainbow Gardens has a mix of locally made and international items.
Jenny King Francl, one of the owners, goes on shopping sprees to find the best items for the Gift Garden. She has already bought Christmas ornaments that will be on display starting in August. During the Christmas season, the shop transforms into a Christmas village, with ten themed Christmas trees, five large display windows and decor on the porch overlooking the river. Shoppers enjoy the festive experience while listening to the river’s soothing sound. During summer, the porch is filled with garden decor.
Something else that makes a trip to the Rainbow Gardens worthwhile are the five hiking trails nearby. Bikers and hikers can spend their day on the trails before cooling off at the Greenery Restaurant. As the name implies, the inside is adorned with beautiful plants. This iconic restaurant has been open here for more than thirty years, and is most famous for its delicious Mormon muffins. It serves lunch and dinner, and people can eat outside while enjoying the picturesque mountains. Breakfast is served on weekends.
Bill King, one of the co-owners, said families celebrate there to remember the nostalgic times when, as children, they visited with their parents. He added that they have a lot of visitors from Davis, Weber and Box Elder Counties and beyond.
Your summer bucket list won’t be complete without a trip to Rainbow Gardens.