WHAT’S NEW IN SCOTTSDALE, ARIZ. - WINTER 2017
New Resorts ~Wellness Retreats ~ Delectable Dining ~ World-Class Golf… and more!
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Step into the wild, untamed Sonoran Desert. Unexpected vibrancy and uncommon ease make Scottsdale unlike any other destination. World-class resorts, spas and golf are always on the horizon, but rooftop pool parties, inventive bars and authentic restaurants bring an energetic urban landscape to life. So come, get away, and see what blooms in the desert.
LUXURY LOVES COMPANY
Who says you can have too much of a good thing? Scottsdale is welcoming three new resorts to its roster of luxury accommodations.
The first of these gems in the desert, Hyatt Hotels Corporation’s Andaz Scottsdale Resort & Spa, opened in December 2016. As with other Andaz properties, this Scottsdale resort immerses guests with experiences indigenous to the location. The resort is partnering with nearby artist compound Cattle Track, the longtime home and studio of some of the Southwest’s most notable artists, such as Philip Curtis and Fritz Scholder. Look carefully at the little details of this property. Much of the artwork and dishware is created by Cattle Track artists. Drawing inspiration from greats like Alexander Girard, Frank Lloyd Wright and Paolo Soleri, the property’s interior features mid-century, desert designs that pay homage to the 1950s. Andaz Scottsdale Resort & Spa features 201 bungalow-style guest rooms, a full-service spa and salon, and 46,000-plus square feet of meeting and event space on more than 22 acres of land. Guests can also sample an assortment of small plates and shareable dishes at the resort’s signature restaurant Weft & Warp Art Bar + Kitchen. Chef Adam Sheff, who joined Andaz Scottsdale from the Park Hyatt New York City, draws inspiration from local flavors and ingredients to create an innovative dining experience in a relaxed yet sophisticated setting overlook Camelback Mountain.
In March 2017, Mountain Shadows, will grace the coveted Paradise Valley locale. The original resort in this location, Marriott Mountain Shadows Resort, was built in 1959 and set a high bar for Southwest luxury. It’s being rebuilt from the ground up by Woodbine Development in partnership with Westroc Hospitality, which manages Hotel Valley Ho and Sanctuary Camelback Mountain Resort. The 183-room, full-service boutique hotel will have a lounge, a 5,000-square-foot fitness center, 12,500 square feet of indoor meeting space and another 25,000 square feet of outdoor meeting space. In addition, the project includes the redesign of neighboring Mountain Shadows Golf Club. Golf will also be right outside your door, as the property will feature an upscale 18-hole, all-par 3 golf course. The resort will also include signature restaurant Hearth ’61, which comes from the creative mind of renowned Chef Charles Wiley. Hearth ’61 will showcase simple, ingredient-driven cuisine in a setting that surrounds guest with stunning desert views.
Scottsdale is “Puttin’ on the Ritz” — a Ritz-Carlton, that is. Ritz-Carlton Paradise Valley recently received the green light to begin construction in spring 2016 and is expected to open by the end of 2018. That’s right, folks, this 200-room, new-build property will have it all — exemplary service, spectacular views of Camelback Mountain, modern, sleek interiors and a location that’s only minutes from downtown Scottsdale. And for all those swimmers, Ritz-Carlton Paradise Valley will boast North America’s longest pool, at more than 400 feet. Other property attributes include a 20,000-square-foot world-class spa with indoor and outdoor treatment areas and a garden with a citrus orchard.
OUT & ABOUT IN SCOTTSDALE
DIVE INTO SCOTTSDALE
The Sonoran Desert may be known as a haven for coyotes and javelinas, but in late September 2016, Scottsdale welcomed more than 30,000 marine animals. The Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community brought the sea to Scottsdale with the opening of OdySea Aquarium. This 16-acre complex is the largest aquarium in the Southwest, spanning 200,000 square feet over two levels. OdySea Aquarium brings guests a high-tech, high-entertainment, oceanic adventure with floor-to-ceiling windows that offer viewing of aquatic life — even in the restrooms — and underwater acrylic tunnels that lead to each level. OdySea Aquarium will explore marine life of more than 500 different species, from bayous and coral reefs to deep abysses in exhibits such as “Rivers of the World,” “Amazon Rivers,” “The Bizarre & the Beautiful” and “Penguins.” The aquarium will also feature SeaTREK, an underwater program that allows visitors to descend deep into the water and meet marine life face-to-face.
OdySea Aquarium is situated in the $200 million OdySea in the Desert complex, already a hotbed of family friendly attractions like Butterfly Wonderland and OdySea Mirror Maze. While temperatures outside OdySea exceed 100 degrees in the summer, it will always be an icy 23 degrees inside the Polar Play attraction, featuring an indoor ice bar, along with a playground for children. Everything inside Polar Play, set to open in 2017, is made of ice — the bar, the drink glasses, walls and chairs. Phoenix ice sculptor Mark Armitage is using his skills to create more than 500 ice sculptures for the 3,500-square-foot space, which will include penguins and polar bears. Other icy plans for Polar Play are a game table made of ice, benches, a slide or an ice tunnel for children.
Right around the corner from OdySea in the Desert, iFly sky diving simulator is opening its doors in January 2017. This adventurous experience includes all necessary equipment, a personalized training session and flight time in the wind tunnel. iFly is family friendly and great for groups looking for more adventure.
15 YEARS IN THE MAKING
Experience the rich and varied cultures of Native American nations through storytelling, song and dance during the 15th anniversary of Native Trails, presented by the Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation and produced by the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts. Onlookers can enjoy these free noontime performances most Thursdays and Saturdays from Jan. 12-March 30, 2017.This milestone year focuses on the theme of unity, which includes two special performances Feb. 16 and 18. Performers representing other cultures will join the Native Trails cast on these dates to focus on connecting people from many different nations and backgrounds to find commonalities.
ARTISTIC OASIS IN THE DESERT
Artists from all walks of life have been inspired by the breathtaking beauty of Scottsdale and subsequently left their mark around town. See some of the newest offerings available at these artistic attractions.
If you look close enough, you can spot influences of Frank Lloyd Wright all over Scottsdale. But if you want an in-depth lesson on the architectural genius, go on an Insights Tour at Taliesin West. This year marks the 80th anniversary of the site that was created by Wright and his apprentices as his personal home, studio and architectural laboratory, as well as Frank Lloyd Wright’s 150th birthday. What better way to celebrate than by learning about the longstanding history and design of Wright’s “desert laboratory,” as well as a few of the quirks that contributed to his successful architecture career? Wright’s foundation is also offering new tours, including a garden tour that showcases the desert plant life at Taliesin West, and a private tour that explores his art collection.
Take a melodic journey through the world at Musical Instrument Museum (MIM), the first global museum of instruments. The museum has left its mark on the Valley of the Sun with 5,000 instruments and artifacts from more than 200 countries on display and more than 15,000 in its collection. Transport to another land with wireless headsets and LCD video displays depicting the sounds and sights of the instruments and the people who use them. See the recreation of a gong workshop, listen to the sounds of the traditional Beijing Opera or experience a contemporary Ukrainian wedding procession. Stop by MIM’s Artist Gallery, which houses instruments from famous musicians throughout time, including John Lennon, Paul Simon, Taylor Swift and the Jonas Brothers. After enjoying a worldly concert, try out your own musical abilities in MIM’s Experience Gallery, where you can play the guitars, gongs and drums. Through Sept. 4, 2017, visitors of the museum can explore Dragons and Vines: Inlaid Guitar Masterpieces, which features guitars, banjos and one ukulele created with intricate details of abalone shell, mother of pearly, coral, and other materials.
Do you love art that makes you think, cry or smile? Then you’ll want to make a stop at Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art (SMoCA), which is located in a brilliant building designed by award-winning architect Will Bruder, who studied under the late renowned architect Paolo Soleri. This one-time movie theater displays nine to 12 exhibitions per year and offers evolving educational programs and special events. The newest exhibit is The Kindness of Strangers: Recent Acquisitions and Conservation Projects, running Jan. 21 – April 23, 2017. This collection includes 1,834 artworks by 640 artists to highlight many of the museum’s recent acquisitions and celebrate some of the intriguing conservation project.
Scottsdale pays homage to its western roots at Western Spirit: Scottsdale’s Museum of the West. Since its 2015 opening, this nonprofit storytelling attraction has created quite the name for itself, as it’s one of the youngest organizations to ever become a certified Smithsonian Affiliate museum. Current exhibitions include John Coleman: Past/Present/Future, which runs through May 31 and explores the career of the pioneer painter and sculptor. The museum is also showcasing The Taos Society of Artists through April 30. This exhibition is presented by the Scottsdale Art Auction and focuses on the artwork of the Taos Society of Artists.
VACATION NEVER TASTED SO GOOD
“Bon appetite” has taken on new meaning in Scottsdale, the foodie capital of the Southwest. After years of flying under the radar, this culinary oasis is finally getting the recognition it deserves with accolades from Esquire, Food & Wine, the James Beard Foundation and AAA, just to name a few. Check out a few of the new culinary innovations that have popped up recently.
Matt Carter earned his Scottsdale street cred with creative culinary concepts, The Mission, The House Brasserie and Zinc Bistro. In November 2016, Carter’s newest restaurant, Fat Ox, opened its doors in central Scottsdale. Fat Ox offers a modern take on Italian cuisine with simple dishes that feature exemplary ingredients, including more than a dozen fresh pastas made in-house daily, slow-roasted meats, wild fish and seafood, and more.
Serving a menu best described as Asian meets modern American, Zen Culinary is the brainchild of Rachel McAuley, a native of Thailand who comes from a family of restaurateurs. Zen Culinary opened its doors in North Scottsdale in November 2016. Its bold menu includes everything from handcrafted sushi and sashimi, to thick-cut steaks and chops, all prepared with a vibrant blend of East meets West ingredients and cooking techniques.
While not new to the Scottsdale culinary scene, Scottsdale favorite FnB is channeling some of its old charm with the opening of its new bar. The bar is replaced the restaurant’s attached local market, Bodega, and recapturing some of the design styles of FnB’s original location. The space was renovated to include a marble-topped bar that can seat about eight guests and a stunning mosaic floor reminiscent of the original FnB design. In addition, the restaurant is expanding its beverage program to include a cider list and a rotating wine list that will focus on a different region every few weeks.
WANDER THE WINE TRAIL
While farm-to-table is all the rage in the culinary world, Scottsdale is taking the concept one step further – from vine-to-table – by introducing four Arizona wine tasting rooms in downtown. These tasting rooms tell the story of the state’s nearly 100 award-winning wineries, many of which boast 90-point wines as recognized by Wine Spectator. Take LDV Wine Gallery, for example. The Wine Gallery brings the taste of the Willcox wine region to the heart of Scottsdale. Sip a glass of Syrah, Grenache or Viognier beneath two shaded patios or enjoy bites and sips in the tasting bar and open kitchen. About 45 minutes away from LDV Winery in southern Arizona is another winery making a name for itself — Aridus Wine Company. This family-owned vineyard may run the largest custom crush facility in Arizona out of Willcox, but you can sample several varietals in its downtown Scottsdale tasting room. And you don’t have to go all the way to Willcox or Jerome to try Salvatore Vineyards. This small, family-owned winery also opened a downtown Scottsdale tasting room last year where you can try a pinot grigio rose, malvasia bianca or one of their agave wines. The newest addition to this burgeoning wine scene is Carlson Creek Vineyard, another Willcox-based winery, which opened a downtown location last summer. Sip on wine in the 2,300-square-foot tasting room or attend an educational seminar to learn more about winemaking in Arizona.