A Desert Oasis Where Travel Meets Culture

About Us


From days long gone

A bit more color but still cozy



The Phoenix Youth Hostel & Cultural Center (Metcalf House) is a family-owned business since 1991.  For over 25 years, the hostel was operated by Susan Gunn who first made the brick house a desert oasis with trees and culture expression.  The name "Metcalf House," which the hostel is sometimes referred to, comes from the original owner of building who supported Susan's vision to keep it a hostel.  From the early days, she believed that through international exchange, artistic expression and fellowship, people of the world could come to greater understanding of each other.  The hostel is decorated with the creative gifts of people from all over the world.

 After Susan retired from management in 2011, Mary Stephens, Susan's daughter, and Keith Stephens (father and daughter team) took over management of the hostel and began a new era of cultural engagement.  Mary extended her mother's vision to include the Phoenix community, adding the "Cultural Center" to the name and opening the doors for public use in service of social justice.   Keith Stephens began large-scale infrastructural remodel to accommodate theater and a backyard art gallery.  For the past five years, the hostel has been a thriving international hostel and vibrant social justice center using arts and creative expression to bring local and international community members together.  

 We are proud of the vibrant and expressive history that our family has created and hope to continue to bring quality service to international and local community members.