Sunny Scottsdale, Arizona

I was in Scottsdale last week for a business trip. I lived in the Phoenix Metro Area many years ago.  It was fun to revisit old haunts and see the changes in the city.  If you are looking for a warm place to spend the winter,  Scottsdale is very attractive. Although the conference was at a Paradise Valley Resort, I stayed in Old Town Scottsdale.  I quite enjoyed walking around the area.  Several years ago my nephew graduated from the prestigious award-winning Le Cordon Bleu Culinary Institute  and my family enjoyed a few days together in celebration.  Food is a big thing in Scottsdale.

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Scottsdale is home to over 600 restaurants. You’ll find some of Arizona’s most upscale restaurants in Scottsdale. Enjoy regional traditional Southwestern flavors as well as  traditional Continental, California, and Latin American cooking.  I admit it, I ate at the original 1958 Sugar Bowl, memorialized in the Family Circus comics by Bil Keane.  Known for their ice cream treats, they also serve diner food. The conference food was primarily Southwest, which I can get right here in Wyoming.


If you like retail therapy, you can find anything and everything in Scottsdale. The Scottsdale Fashion Square is the largest shopping center in the Southwest. Couture is available; Barney’s, Macy’s, Carolyn Herrera, Louis Vuitton, and Armani are just some of the famous names from the mall directory. I preferred walking about in Old Town Scottsdale and downtown, where the Fifth Avenue Shops provide an eclectic variety of , cowgirl-chic boutiques, jewelry design, apparel, and unique Southwestern gifts. I bought nothing, however.


The majority of nightlife is in Downtown Scottsdale, between Camelback and Osborn roads. This is the most active and popular nightlife destination in the Phoenix Metropolitan Area. Similar to well-known nightclub districts in other major cities, much like Atlanta‘s Buckhead district and Miami‘s South Beach, most of Downtown Scottsdale’s major bars and clubs are generally located within walking distance. Crowds of over 40,000-strong are known to congregate to this area. I was there midweek, and it was not at all exciting.


Scottsdale rivals Santa Fe as the Southwest’s premier art Mecca. Scottsdale is home to more than 125 professional art galleries and studios, one of the highest per-capita an in the nation. Traditional Western Art is prevalent in Scottsdale galleries, but the city also has a flourishing contemporary art scene. The Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art (SMoCA) champions innovation and vitality in the visual arts with ongoing exhibits of contemporary and modern art. SMoCA is the only permanent museum dedicated solely to the contemporary arts in the state of Arizona.  Also located in Old Town, Western Spirit: Scottsdale’s Museum of the West opened in January 2015, featuring historical and cultural exhibits from 19 states of the American West, including Arizona. I love museums, and art. Sadly, by the time I got out of conference events, the museums were closed for the day.

Bird of Paradise


Luxurious  resorts  draw celebrities, winter visitors, families, and couples seeking a private escape into the desert. The Hyatt, Four Seasons, Waldorf-Astoria, and Hilton all provide sprawling desert gardens, private poolside cabanas, world-class spas and dining, championship-level golf, and guided excursions into the desert wilderness. The conference venue resort featured open fire pits, outdoor lounge seating, poolside dining, and private decks and balconies as standard amenities.


The tourism industry is Scottsdale’s primary employer, accounting for 39% of the city’s workforce. In 2005, Scottsdale attracted over 7.5 million visitors to the city, providing an economic impact of over $3.1 billion. The city of Scottsdale by itself is home to more than 70 resorts and hotels, boasting over 15,000 hotel rooms. This large hospitality market primarily caters to a higher-end, white-collar demographic.

The city of Scottsdale is tied with Atlanta for fourth, after New York City, Las Vegas, and Chicago respectively, as having the most AAA Five-Diamond hotels and resorts in the United States. In 2015, AAA bestowed four such properties in Scottsdale with the highest honor: The PhoenicianThe Canyon SuitesFour Seasons Resort Scottsdale at Troon North, and the Fairmont Princess Resort and Spa.

As of 2016, Scottsdale has the highest number of destination spas per capita of any city in the United States.


Scottsdale offers nearly 100 miles of hiking, horseback-riding trails, and biking. Popular spots include Pinnacle Peak Park, Camelback Mountain, and the expansive McDowell Sonoran Preserve, which offers almost 20,000 acres of pristine desert.

The city is located in the Salt River Valley, or the “Valley of the Sun,” in the northern reaches of the Sonoran Desert. Scottsdale, 31 miles long and 11.4 miles wide at its widest point, shares boundaries with many other municipalities and entities. On the west, Scottsdale is bordered by PhoenixParadise Valley, and unincorporated Maricopa County land. Carefree is located along the eastern boundary, as well as sharing Scottsdale’s northern boundary with the Tonto National Forest. To the south Scottsdale is bordered by Tempe. The southern boundary is also occupied by the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community, which extends along the eastern boundary, which also borders Fountain Hills, the McDowell Mountain Regional Park and more unincorporated Maricopa County land.

Warning-although wonderful in the winter, temperatures in the summer have been known to reach 120 degrees Fahrenheit.  Nice place to visit, don’t want to live there.

Barrel Cactus

To explore things to do in Scottsdale go to :



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