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Top 5 Accommodations Scottsdale: Large (Spring-Summer 2014)

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Get ready to experience Arizona’s spring/summer 2014 Top 5 Accommodations in Scottsdale, Large (300 or more rooms)! And use Experience AZ to guide you toward a visit that will make you want to come back time after time to keep crossing the must see hot spots off your Top 5 lists.



Top 5 Accommodations: Scottsdale, Large (300 or more rooms)

Camelback Inn, A JW Marriott Resort & Spa
5402 E. Lincoln Dr. Scottsdale, AZ 85253

(480) 948-1700
Website
An enchanting haven of AAA Five-Diamond hospitality and Southwestern charm is yours to rediscover: the hacienda-style entry and lobby, spectacular new restaurants, grand courtyard and the all new 20,000-square-foot Arizona Ballroom await. Experience Scottsdale’s most celebrated Spa Camelback Inn or challenge your game on 36 holes of championship Arizona golf.

Carefree Resort & Conference Center
37220 N. Mule Train Rd. Carefree, AZ 85377

(480) 488-5300
Website
Embrace the Southwestern lifestyle in total relaxation at a place filled with soothing and simple spaces with uncluttered panoramic views of the Continental Mountains. Play tennis, enjoy the spa or simply relax at the pool with a margarita.

FireSky Resort
4925 N. Scottsdale Rd. Scottsdale, AZ 85251

(480) 945-7666
Website
At FireSky Resort, pamper yourself at Jurlique Spa, enjoy fine Italian dining at Taggia and take in its breathtaking Scottsdale location. At FireSky, fire, water, earth and air sumptuously blend to create a magical world of comfort and beauty.

Fairmont Scottsdale Princess
7575 E. Princess Dr. Scottsdale, AZ 85255

(480) 585-4848
Website
This hotel has one of the best spas in North America, two award-winning restaurants, meeting facilities and two 18-hole championship golf courses — one of which is home to the Annual PGA Tour Waste Management Phoenix Open (formerly the FBR Open).

The Phoenician
6000 E. Camelback Rd. Scottsdale, AZ 85251

(480) 941-8200
Website
This AAA Five Diamond award-winning property offers luxurious casitas, suites and guest rooms; one of America’s best resort golf courses; The Centre for Well-Being spa; a tennis complex; nine swimming pools and elegant dining venues.

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golf

Camelback Inn Announces New $10 Million Golf Course

The JW Marriott Camelback Inn Resort & Spa announced that it will unveil its new Ambiente golf course at Camelback Golf Club in the fall of 2013. Spanish for the word “environment,” Ambiente, which is designed with a detailed eco-friendly focus, will become the first new golf course development project in the Phoenix-Scottsdale and Paradise Valley areas in over five years, and one of a select group of new courses to be built nationwide.

The completion of the $10 million Ambiente golf course will culminate a seven-year, $70 million Marriott renewal project at Camelback Inn, designed to blend reverence for the past with relevance for the future. From preserving the resort’s 1930s adobe brick to the stylish renovation of the Inn’s 453 casita-style guestrooms, and from a new 20,000 square-foot, hi-tech grand ballroom to the debut of BLT Steak, Laurent Tourondel’s modern American steakhouse, the renewal project involved virtually every aspect of the historic resort. Today the new-look 125-acre Camelback Inn, set on its Sonoran Desert surroundings in Paradise Valley, strikes the perfect balance between showcasing the best of the resort’s storied past, while setting a visionary course for the future.

Adding to the lore of Camelback, Ambiente is expected to gain golf industry-wide acclaim for its distinct design, the challenging, yet enjoyable experience it presents to golfers of all levels and the overall aesthetic and environmental qualities it brings to the Phoenix-Scottsdale area. In concert with the popular Padre golf course, Ambiente will help to establish a one-of-a-kind 36-hole Southwest golf destination, for both leisure and group golfers, within the enchanting resort atmosphere of the Camelback Inn.

“Ambiente is more than just a new golf course, for it represents the final phase in Marriott’s unmatched commitment to reinvigorate Camelback Inn for the future, while preserving its history and the unique Southwestern style that has made it a favorite for generations of travelers,” said Jim Rose, General Manager, JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort & Spa. “While Ambiente is sure to distract golfers with its natural beauty and breathtaking views of Mummy Mountain, Camelback, the McDowells and the Phoenix Mountain Preserve, our golfing guests will find a friendly test of skill and shotmaking that will redefine the golf experience at a resort long known for its exceptional service, palette pleasing food, luxurious accommodations and spirit of adventure.”

The launch of Ambiente, which replaces the old Indian Bend golf course, will create a uniquely different golf experience than the Padre course, which today is regarded as a great parkland style golf course that, while scenic, boasts numerous water hazards, towering Pine and Eucalyptus trees and 18 golf holes that will test every golfer’s ability. In contrast, Ambiente, which was designed by notable golf architect Jason Straka on behalf of Hurdzan/Fry Environmental Golf Design, will present a distinct challenge where accuracy and a good strategy command the day, as every hole will force even the best players to focus on each and every shot. Golfers will find the eye-catching elevation changes, as well as rolling fairways with significant drops throughout the course, are among its most striking features.

Ambiente will also feature five sets of tee boxes, designed to positively impact today’s golf industry “growth of the game” effort. The new forward tees have no forced carries and offer easier approach angles, which create opportunities for aspiring golfers to enjoy regardless of their playing ability. One of the most golfer-friendly features of Ambiente is the creatively shaped greens. The overall green acreage, which stands at about 122,000 square feet, offers great movement, character and feel. Visually intimidating, the putting surfaces are very fair, but will challenge golfers to bring their best putting stroke every time out.

Environment is a significant part of the Ambiente golf course story, which centers on water conservation, wildlife habitat creation and an overall 50 percent decrease in pesticide/fertilizer and fossil fuel use, as compared to the former Indian Bend golf course. The design and layout of the course will be highlighted by 100 acres of new native desert and grass areas that will feature a mix of acacias, jojobas and sagebrush among many other desert shrubs and grasses, as well as an eye-catching collection of both summer and winter desert wildflower mixes.

These native areas, which will require one-third less water than Indian Bend, will be complemented by 85 acres of hybrid turf grass that also requires significantly less water, while reducing the daily labor and machinery intensive maintenance of traditional Bermuda grass. Overall, the combined native areas will give the course a more Northern desert look compared to the area’s traditional Sonoran Desert layouts, making it a must-play Southwestern layout in Paradise Valley.

From an Audubon standpoint, Ambiente is designed to cater to wildlife, which is part of Marriott’s overall role as a steward of the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary program. By removing over 100 acres of turf grass and replacing it with native desert and grass areas, bird inventory, as well as the local mammal population, will increase substantially.

Adds Rose, “Environmental consciousness has long been a hallmark at Marriott, and we believe that Ambiente is a perfect example of the Company’s commitment to protecting wildlife and natural resources, while continually serving as a leader in eco-friendly business practices. Upon completion, we expect golfers in the community will find that Ambiente stands alongside the premier golf landscapes in the Phoenix-Scottsdale market, while we expect the course to redefine the destination golf experience for group and leisure customers visiting the Camelback Inn.”

The Phoenician resort is nestled in the Sonoran Desert, with the breathtaking Camelback Mountain its backdrop. Photo: The Phoenician

Top 5: Scottsdale Accommodations, Large (Fall-Winter 2012)

The Top 5 Scottsdale Accommodations, Large — as voted on by Experience AZ readers:

Scottsdale Accommodations, Large: 300 or more rooms

 

Westin Kierland Resort & Spa

6902 E. Greenway Pkwy.,
Scottsdale, AZ 85254
(480) 624-1000
kierlandresort.com
Come wander the groups of this desert oasis. Explore its hidden corners. Discover its intimate treasures. Enjoy desert-inspired treatments at Agave, The Arizona Spa, 27 holes of championship golf, waterpark, award-winning dining and nearby upscale shopping.


The Phoenician

6000 E. Camelback Rd.,
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
(480) 941-8200
thephoenician.com
This AAA 5 Diamond award-winning property offers luxurious casitas, suites and guest rooms; one of America’s best resort golf courses; The Centre for Well-Being spa; tennis complex; nine swimming pools and elegant dining venues.


Hyatt Regency Scottsdale at Gainey Ranch

7500 E. Doubletree Ranch Rd.,
Scottsdale, AZ 85258
(800) 233-1234
scottsdale.hyatt.com
Discover your own perfect hotel stay with championship golf, Spa Avania, a water playground or Camp Hyatt Kachina. Expansive meeting facilities are just minutes away from the area’s major attractions.


Fairmont Scottsdale Princess

7575 E. Princess Dr.,
Scottsdale, AZ 85255
(480) 585-4848
scottsdaleprincess.com
Offering one of the best spas in North America, two award-winning restaurants, meeting facilities and two 18-hole championship golf courses — one of which is home to the Annual PGA Tour Waste Management Phoenix Open (formerly the FBR Open).


Camelback Inn, A JW Marriott Resort & Spa

5402 E. Lincoln Dr.,
Scottsdale, AZ 85253
(480) 948-1700
camelbackinn.com
An enchanting haven of AAA Five-diamond hospitality and Southwestern charm is yours to rediscover: the hacienda-style entry and lobby, spectacular new restaurants, grand courtyard and the all new 20,000-square-foot Arizona Ballroom await. Experience Scottsdale’s most celebrated Spa Camelback Inn or challenge your game on 36-holes of championship Arizona golf.

Experience AZ Fall-Winter 2012

Top 10 Accommodations: Scottsdale Hotels & Resorts (Spring-Summer 2012)

Top 10 Accommodations: Scottsdale Hotels & Resorts (Spring-Summer 2012)

The Top 10 Scottsdale Hotels & Resorts — as voted on by Experience AZ readers:

Boulders Resort & Golden Door Spa

34631 N. Tom Darlington Dr.,
Carefree, AZ 85377
480-595-3500
theboulders.com
Experience an undeniably unique sense of place astonishingly in tune with the environment. Untouched. Unspoiled. The Boulders provides a luxurious natural refuge immersed within two Jay Morrish championship golf courses. Enjoy a striking destination inspired by the extraordinary landscape, melding the offerings of thrilling outdoor recreation and renowned spa treatments, with the unsurpassed beauty of the Sonoran Desert.


Camelback Inn, A JW Marriott Resort & Spa

5402 E. Lincoln Dr.,
Scottsdale, AZ 85253
480-948-1700
camelbackinn.com
The much-anticipated $50 million renovation of Camelback Inn, a JW Marriott Resort & Spa in Scottsdale, Arizona has been unveiled. An enchanting haven of AAA Five-diamond hospitality and Southwestern charm is yours to rediscover: the hacienda-style entry and lobby, spectacular new restaurants, grand courtyard and the all new 20,000 square foot Arizona Ballroom await. Experience Scottsdale’s most celebrated Spa Camelback Inn or challenge your game on 36-holes of championship Arizona golf.


Fairmont Scottsdale

7575 E. Princess Dr.,
Scottsdale, Arizona 85255
480-585-4848
scottsdaleprincess.com
Offering one of the best spas in North America, two award-winning restaurants, meeting facilities and two 18-hole championship golf courses — one of which is home to the Annual PGA Tour Waste Management Phoenix Open (formerly the FBR Open).


Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale at Troon North

10600 E. Crescent Moon Dr.,
Scottsdale, Arizona 85262
888-207-9696
fourseasons.com/scottsdale
High in the Sonoran Desert, in the cooling foothills of Pinnacle Peak, relax in Southwestern-style casitas, dine with heartbeat-skipping views, bask in sun-drenched weather and astonishing scenery, and rise to the challenge of golf at Troon North.


Hotel Valley Ho

6850 E. Main St.,
Scottsdale, Arizona 85251
866-882-4484
hotelvalleyho.com
Originally built in 1956, the hotel re-opened in 2005, following extensive renovations. Features include a full-service spa boutique and a pool. Restaurants include the hotel’s signature restaurant, Cafe ZuZu.


Hyatt Regency Scottsdale at Gainey Ranch

7500 E. Doubletree Ranch Rd., Scottsdale, Arizona 85258
800-233-1234
scottsdale.hyatt.com
Discover your own perfect hotel stay with championship golf, Spa Avania, water playground or Camp Hyatt Kachina. Expansive meeting facilities are just minutes away from the area’s major attractions.


The Phoenician

6000 E. Camelback Rd.,
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
480-941-8200
thephoenician.com
This AAA 5 Diamond award-winning property offers luxurious casitas, suites and guest rooms; one of America’s best resort golf courses; The Centre for Well-Being spa; tennis complex; nine swimming pools and elegant dining venues.


Talking Stick Resort

9800 E. Indian Bend Rd.,
Scottsdale, AZ 85256
877-724-4687
talkingstickresort.com
Offering distinct comfort and the most contemporary appointments, all Talking Stick Resort guest rooms and hotel suites exude the flavor of Scottsdale and the Southwest with a modern flair.


W Scottsdale

7277 E. Camelback Rd.,
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
480-970-2100
whotels.com/Scottsdale
Sizzling hot and sparkling cool, W Scottsdale is infused with natural water elements flowing with meditative energy surrounded by exhilarating arts, sophisticated shopping, destination golf and a pulsating nightlife in our most livable city.


Westin Kierland Resort & Spa

6902 E. Greenway Pkwy.,
Scottsdale, AZ 85254
480-624-1000
kierlandresort.com
Come wander the groups of this desert oasis. Explore its hidden corners. Discover its intimate treasures. Enjoy desert-inspired treatments at Agave, The Arizona Spa, 27 holes of championship golf, waterpark, award-winning dining and nearby upscale shopping.

Experience AZ Spring-Summer 2012

 

BLT Steak Offers Fine Food In A Classy, Yet Casual Setting

BLT — Oh, there’s bacon, lettuce and tomato alright, but not in the way you would expect. BLT Steak actually stands for Bistro Laurent Tourondel, named after its famous chef and the master behind the magic of this great dining experience. As part of the BLT Restaurant Group, the Scottsdale location is one of many restaurant ventures with homes in cities from New York to Los Angeles, and even San Juan, Puerto Rico. One thing that remains constant at all the restaurants is Tourondel’s devotion to fine ingredients, with simply prepared cuisine served in a relaxed dining atmosphere.

BLT Steak is known for its signature modern American steakhouse menu that is supplemented by weekly blackboard specials. The restaurant recently celebrated its one-year anniversary at the renovated Camelback Inn and continues to impress guests with great dining in a casually elegant setting. Chef De Cuisine Marc Hennessy has created a blend of American fare with a French twist, also paying homage to the location with hints of Southwestern seasonings and flavors.

After much discussion, my dining companions and I finally ordered some appetizers. We opted for the crabcakes and tuna tartare — little did we know that this was only the beginning of course after course, bite after bite of delicious dining. The crabcake, complemented by remoulade and radish salad, tasted delicious. But our table was simply blown away by the tuna tartare. The tuna was served on a plate of ice — a detail that would ultimately seal the deal as the table favorite — resulting in a pleasant, chilled taste, packed with the flavors of avocado, soy-lime dressing and a whisper of wasabi. Divine. Did I mention this was only the beginning of our meal? Our knowledgeable and friendly server, Jeanie, also brought out a chicken liver pate with crunchy, toasted bread and a fine assortment of antipasto.

Next, we were surprised with some massive carbohydrate creations. Giant Gruyere-crusted popovers, coupled with butter and sea salt, were brought to our table. The sheer size of these concoctions was intimidating, but once you broke through that crispy layer and unearthed the airy, warm, soft bread center, all fears disappeared. I indulged in one whole popover, though I really did try to stop myself, knowing that a full meal awaited.

We rounded out our starter selections with crispy field greens, flavorful roasted beets, and beefsteak tomatoes that impressed our table even further. What was next we wondered? The answer: more great-tasting food.

Sauteed dover sole, 8-oz filet, 14-oz New York Strip and braised short ribs were our entree selections. Just as the popovers had thrown us for a loop, so too did the entrees and the accompanying sides. We were lucky to sample a true assortment, everything from potato gratin and grilled asparagus to stuffed mushroom caps. We certainly got our daily dose of vegetables, even if some were served with bacon, as was the case with the brussels sprouts. As one of my dining companions noted, “the only way to do brussels sprouts is with bacon.” I can’t argue that one. But bacon or no bacon, every dish left us wanting more — and wishing we had the room in our stomachs to accommodate it.

The fish was buttery and light, simply melting in your mouth with each bite. Of course, we had to sample some signature steaks at a restaurant with the entree in its moniker, and we weren’t disappointed. The New York Strip had a zesty tang thanks to a peppercorn sauce. The filet’s medium-well cooked flavors were complemented by my choice of red wine sauce (FYI there’s myriad sauces to choose from), and the braised short ribs also were well received.

Alas, our meal was slowly coming to an end. Despite the fact that not one of us thought we could muster another bite, we simply couldn’t leave without having dessert. Our commitment to the full dining experience was rewarded by the three desserts we selected: a warm chocolate tart, a peanut butter chocolate mousse and a blueberry-lemon meringue pie. The tart was incredibly rich, but was paired well with the coolness of a dollop of pistachio ice cream. The peanut butter chocolate mousse, served with banana ice cream, was an interesting mix with a great balance of flavors. And last, but certainly not least, I surprised myself with my personal favorite of the night. Normally, anything chocolate wins in my book, but the fresh fruit flavors of the pie and the tartness of the lemon sorbet were a perfect ending to a meal fit for a king. For a truly satisfying meal, excellent service and an overall pleasant dining experience, BLT Steak doesn’t disappoint.

If You Go:
BLT Steak Scottsdale
At Camelback Inn, A JW Marriott Resort & Spa
5402 E. Lincoln Dr., Scottsdale
(480) 905-7979
www.bltscottsdale.com

Arizona Business Magazine

January 2010