Experience Scottsdale is a 501(c)(6) nonprofit, private company that has contracts with the City of Scottsdale and Town of Paradise Valley to conduct destination marketing efforts on behalf of these municipalities. We also partner with the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community and the Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation.
Originally founded in 1987 as the tourism arm of the Scottsdale Area Chamber of Commerce, Experience Scottsdale became a standalone organization in 2001. The organization has more than 40 full- and part-time employees, along with a volunteer board of directors composed of local hospitality and tourism industry leaders.
Our staff brands the Scottsdale area as a world-class destination through advertisements, campaigns, social media and a variety of marketing and sales tactics. We work with meeting planners from all over the world to book their business in Scottsdale. We spread the word about the great things in Scottsdale by garnering media coverage both nationally and internationally. Plus, we teach travel agents how to sell our destination to their clients and work to get Scottsdale information in brochures and promotions.
Our vision is to position Scottsdale as a world-class vacation, meetings and group travel destination by communicating an image that sells the uniqueness of the Scottsdale experience.
Our organization is committed to enhancing the economic base of Scottsdale and its partnering communities through a strong visitor, meetings and group travel industry. We achieve this by:
- Maintaining a leadership position in Arizona’s hospitality and tourism industry
- Positioning Scottsdale in top-performing domestic and international markets to attract targeted, high-value visitors to our resorts and hotels
- Teaming with member businesses to create awareness and excitement among meeting planners, tour operators, travel agents and media in our established feeder markets, while building credibility and interest in our entry markets
Our primary funding comes from bed-tax revenue collected by Scottsdale resorts and hotels and passed along to the City of Scottsdale. Half of the City’s bed tax is allocated to Experience Scottsdale for destination marketing initiatives. The remaining bed-tax revenue is used for tourism-related capital projects, special events and more by the City of Scottsdale. The City’s contract with Experience Scottsdale is overseen by the City’s Tourism & Events Department and the Tourism Development Commission.
We also serve as the Town of Paradise Valley’s destination marketing organization and receive bed-tax revenue via our contract with the Town. Additionally, the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community and the Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation invest in our marketing efforts.
Another public funding source is the State of Arizona, via Proposition 302, in which Maricopa County hotel operators and rental car companies collect and pass along an additional tax to the state that is then split and invested into numerous projects.
As a membership-based organization with more than 400 members, we also receive some private-sector revenue via membership dues and through program participation fees.