Trimming your carbon footprint doesn’t mean skimping on the things that make a Scottsdale getaway fun and memorable. From supporting LEED-Certified attractions and shopping local to car-free explorations, urban biking and veggie-forward eateries, here are several great ways Scottsdale makes it easy for you to tread lightly while visiting!
FAIRMONT SCOTTSDALE PRINCESS
This AAA Five-Diamond resort is part of Accor’s Planet 21 sustainability program and has long had a strong focus on water and energy conservation, as well as sourcing local foods and beverages. In 2023, the Princess will launch its new BEE program, with hives located on property and bee-themed experiences for guests that showcase the lifecycle of bees, their importance to the food chain and the critical need to preserve them.
CIVANA WELLNESS RESORT & SPA
North Scottsdale’s CIVANA Wellness Resort & Spa is committed to the well-being of its guests and the planet. Upon check-in, each guest receives a complimentary BPA-free, double-insulated CIVANA water bottle that can be refilled at spring water hydration stations around the property. Other waste minimization and conservation efforts include locally sourcing furnishings made from recyclable materials to reduce transport emissions, use of greywater for landscaping, environmentally preferred cleaning products and much more.
HOTEL VALLEY HO
Old Town’s iconic Hotel Valley Ho is as environmentally friendly as it is retro chic. In addition to a recycling program and impressive water- and energy-saving measures, the Valley Ho utilizes only green-certified cleaning agents in guest rooms, washes linens with hydrogen peroxide instead of harmful bleach, uses no pesticides or herbicides for landscaping, and stocks guest rooms with organic, biodegradable and paraben-free Red Flower amenities.
Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve is the result of a citizen-based initiative that began in 1990 with the goal of protecting our desert from development. Today, the Preserve is the largest of its kind in the nation and encompasses more than 30,500 acres, or roughly one-third of the city’s land mass. More than 235 miles of shared-use trails are open to the public for hiking, biking and horseback riding, and all of the Preserves 11 trailheads were built with sustainability in mind.
SOUTHWEST WILDLIFE CONSERVATION CENTER
Meet some of the Sonoran Desert’s most fascinating inhabitants – including coyotes, bobcats, black bears, foxes and javelina – on a Walk with Wildlife tour at this working wildlife sanctuary. While their primary focus is on rescue, rehabilitation and release, Southwest Wildlife provides a lifelong home to any animal that cannot be rereleased into the wild. (Note: reservations are required)
REI CO-OP EXPERIENCES
Learn about the Sonoran Desert from the experts at REI Co-op Experiences. REI offers guided hiking, road and mountain biking, kayaking, rafting and SUP excursions that provide insight into the desert’s delicate ecosystem. All of REI’s tours follow Leave No Trace principals and are a great way to experience the Sonoran Desert first-hand.
OLD TOWN SCOTTSDALE
Put on your walking shoes and enjoy a car-free day in Old Town! Within one square mile, you’ll find an outstanding collection of boutiques, art galleries, museums and restaurants. Explore on two feet, take a tour on one of JoyRidesAZ Scottsdale’s all-electric, open-air vehicles or visit Pedego Scottsdale on Fifth Avenue and rent an e-bike for a fun, easy and green way to get around.
DESERT BOTANICAL GARDEN
One of the most popular attractions at the Desert Botanical Garden, the Butterfly Pavilion houses thousands of colorful live butterflies. The pavilion is part of the Garden’s Pollinator Conservation Research Program, which centers on the special relationship between pollinating insects and the desert plants that are important for their survival. As you browse the Garden’s thematic pathways, you can also pick up fun tips such as how to create a robust, water-wise home garden.
GIVING BACK OPPORTUNITIES
If you’re considering a voluntourism activity as part of your Scottsdale stay, we thank you! From working with seniors or youth in need to caring for homeless animals or helping maintain trails in Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve, there are plenty of options to choose from in Scottsdale. Find out more at the link above.
Known around town as the “veggie whisperer,” James Beard Award-winning Chef Charleen Badman coaxes the very best flavors out of locally grown veggies, which are featured prominently (though not exclusively) on FnB’s seasonally changing menu. Old Town’s FnB also features a carefully curated list of premium Arizona wines for a taste of the local terroir.
“Live Without Compromise” is the motto at Tocaya Organica and boy, do they deliver! Not only do they have a vegan filter on their website that makes it incredibly easy to eat meat-free, but the chef recommends a specific plant-based protein for each dish. If happiness is great food, this modern Mexican restaurant will keep you smiling your whole meal through.
Vegan and vegetarian dishes with a Vietnamese twist shine on the menu at this North Scottsdale eatery. All meals are made only when ordered to ensure freshness, and each one features Chef Mai Ly’s masterful blending of herbs, spices and traditional ingredients. Must-try specialties include Ly’s Signature Lemongrass Curry, Fresh Mint Tomatoes and Five Spice Noodle Pho. Gluten-free options and soy protein add-ons are available.