Almost every August, I find myself spending 24 hours in Scottsdale, Arizona. Why? Because it can be one of the best gateways for California, which is a neighbouring state and a few hours drive away.
I never forgot Mr. O’s reaction when we arrived at The Phoenician the first time we went in around 2008. So, obviously, we had to go back there. One of those grand dame hotels, which a recent facelift, it is very comfortable – all in all, a classic.
Flying from Europe to this part of the world literally kills the first day, and night (thanks to the 8-hour time difference) so we always book a very relaxed dinner on the first evening and find it a good way to begin our 24 hours in Scottsdale, Arizona.
The Mission (recommended by Arizona local Annie Fitzsimmons) welcomed us with open arms and were determined to make sure we stayed awake, by getting us started with some fab margueritas. It kind of worked, as we indulged in two more, as we got busy trying on the ‘latin’ specialities (the discovery of this trip, which continued in California).
The menu is pretty interesting and the table side guacamole is obviously a must try.
After a good night’s sleep, we woke up to this view. I am slightly obsessed with American deserts, it seems – possibly because we don’t have this type of scenery in Europe. I find it fascinating and very very calming.
Mr. O played a bit of golf, whilst I enjoyed the pool. It was breezy, a nice “cool” 30C (ha ha), perfect for us Europeans to get into holiday mode. I love the fact that The Phoenician has a “quiet” pool, which is adults-only and for quiet people only. I am a firm believer that there is a time and a place for everything and being such a large resort, it means that it can please various types of guests. I seriously wished other hotels would follow this example. I love reading and sleeping when I am by the pool or beach and sometimes it is not *that* easy.
We spent a lazy day by the pool and indulged in one of my favourite past times.. guess what? Of course, shopping. Scottsdale has one of the best malls (Fashion Square) in the States and it would be rude not to go.
The Mall is going a proper renovation with Nobu and other fancy eateries coming – and the place I went to (Modern Steak) doesn’t exist anymore.
We ended our night at a pool party at the W Scottsdale, which was not really my scene, but interesting to see.
That said, we did have quite a bit of fun (except for the plastic glasses which don’t really go hand in hand with $20 drinks, but this is America) – and was a good jet lag cure.
But what we did wrong? We didn’t stay long enough. The one nighter just doesn’t do Scottsdale any justice. But it was time to head to California, and it is only a 4-hour drive from Palm Springs.
Until the next time.