Underwent a three-year, $90 million renovation for grand contemporary interiors
Lush grounds at the base of Camelback Mountain, a 10-minute drive from Old Town Scottsdale
Huge rooms with sitting areas and private balconies -- many with breathtaking views
Italian linens, flat-screen TVs, minibars, and luxe marble bathrooms with large oval tubs in all rooms
Superb sports facilities include a golf course, tennis complex, and cutting edge Athletic Club
Five restaurants and bars, including a Jean Georges steakhouse, plus 24-hour room service
Sprawling three-tiered pool complex with cabanas for rent, plus kids’ splash zone and waterslide
Spectacular tri-level spa with rooftop pool, high tech fitness studio, and free yoga classes
Cocktail mixology classes, bikes to borrow, Wi-Fi, and dinnertime childcare (covered in resort fee)
Huge conference center featuring an array of indoor and outdoor event space
Retail corridor with designer shops, boutiques, and a gourmet cafe
Funicians kids’ club (costs extra)
Covered parking (for a fee)
Resort and parking fees add to room rates
A long, maze-like walk to the rooms from the parking lot
The Phoenician is a sprawling luxury resort and conference center set on 250 acres, situated at the foot of Camelback Mountain, 25 minutes from Phoenix and 10 minutes from Old Town Scottsdale. A three-year $90 million renovation brought this Arizona icon a lavish overhaul throughout its grand common areas, 643 rooms (including casitas and suites), and state-of-the-art facilities set around a huge, show-stopping three-tiered pool complex. Highlights include an 18-hole golf course, five restaurants and bars, cutting edge Athletic Club, seven tennis courts, and an exquisite spa center with a rooftop pool. Between the splash pad, waterslide, kids’ club, and game room, there’s plenty for kids without compromising the grown-up vibe. The Phoenician is worth the splurge (and the resort fee), though the Andaz Scottsdale Resort & Spa offers smaller scale upscale amenities for lower rates.
The Phoenician has been an Arizona icon since it opened in 1988 after its no-expense-spared, $300 million construction. Originally home to the historic, 1900s-built Jokake Inn, the site was transformed into a gleaming new mega-resort compound stretched out on 250 acres at the base of Camelback Mountain.
The original resort featured a grand Carrera marble lobby, ceilings etched in 24-karat gold, and the state’s largest cactus garden -- home to 250 cactus species. The original Adobe-style Jokake Inn remains just inside the property entrance, along with the cactus garden bordering the property’s northern edge, and after changing hands numerous times over the years, the resort has been given a fresh injection of grandeur. While operated by Starwood Hotels, The Phoenician is owned by Host Hotels & Resorts group, who lavished the property with a three-year $90-million renovation -- the biggest since its inception. While much of the original construction remains, The Phoenician is a sparkling incarnation of its former self, and feels like a brand new resort. All guest rooms, casitas, and suites were stunningly renovated, along with most common areas, including the lobby, retail corridor, and pool complex.
The Phoenician feels like its own private world -- enhanced by its sprawling acreage and arid nature backdrop. The massive property makes a striking first impression. Communal interiors retain their Old-World luxury appeal with marble floors and giant chandeliers, while Sonoran desert decor inspiration brought more contemporary elements into the mix, like rattlesnake textured carpet, front desk pods, and custom sculptures created by local artists. Tropical gardens provide oasis-like contrast, and the signature Mother of Pearl pool has been expanded into a dazzling three-tiered showstopper.
The two biggest additions -- The Phoenician Spa and the Athletic Club -- are each state-of-the-art, multi-level freestanding facilities that could be destinations in themselves, but the stellar panoramic views across the grounds to Scottsdale and the horizon attract most of the attention. Guests range from families to honeymooners to business travelers and groups.
On the edge of Camelback Mountain in Phoenix, close to Old Town Scottsdale
The Phoenician takes up a large chunk of prime real estate on the edge of Camelback Mountain -- an iconic symbol of Phoenix that's popular for hiking. The area is actually known for dividing Phoenix from Scottsdale, so guests have easy access to both areas for shopping, dining, and cultural sights. A car is still needed to get around, but most sights are within 20 minutes or less. The Phoenician is about 10 minutes from downtown and Old Town Scottsdale. Other worthwhile sites include the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art (10 minutes), Phoenix Zoo (13 minutes), the Desert Botanical Garden (15 minutes), the Pueblo Grande Museum (18 minutes), and Biltmore Fashion Park (12 minutes). Sky Harbor Airport is about a 20-minute drive.
Contemporary luxe style with huge layouts, stunning marble bathrooms, and private patios
All of The Phoenician’s guest rooms, suites, and casitas were fully renovated as part of the hotel’s $90 million renovation. Luxe contemporary interiors feature custom furniture, elegant berber wool carpets, subtle Southwestern touches, and neutral hues inspired by the Sonoran Desert. Warm wood pieces complement a nature-inspired palette of grays, blues, and soft beiges. Beds, available in single king or two queen configurations, are dressed in white Italian linens. All rooms come with flat-screen televisions, refrigerated minibars, Keurig coffeemakers, wall safes, irons, and ironing boards. High speed Wi-Fi is included in the daily resort fee.
All categories are huge. Guest rooms, located in the main building, start at 600 square feet -- large enough to house sitting areas with l-shaped lounges, and round dining tables for two. Casitas (530 to 1700 square feet) range from studio to two-bedroom layouts set around the edge of Necklace Lake, and are a short walk from the lobby and parking. Suites up the luxury ante, with elegantly decorated living areas and 1,200 square foot layouts (4,000 for Presidential Suites). All categories open to private furnished terraces or patios via full-width glass sliding glass doors. The most simple Superior Rooms come with limited views or partially obstructed views, while higher categories offer stunning panoramas of resort grounds and desert surrounds.
Opulent bathrooms are dressed in Italian marble with extra wide twin vanities, separate showers, and Roman oval baths. Hairdryers, magnifying mirrors, scales, and signature toiletries are included. There’s also a nightly turndown service.
Exquisite grand-scale fitness, athletic, spa, dining, and pool facilities -- plus a resort fee
The Phoenician pools are a major highlight, unfolding over three expansive tiers with upper, middle, and lower levels. There are plenty of deck chairs, and reservable cabanas, plus separate adult-only and kids’ pools, in addition to poolside food and beverage service. The colorful Kid Zone features a splash pad, spray guns, and a twisting waterslide (with minimum height requirements).
The two-story Athletic Club includes a 4,600 square foot fitness center with modern cardio machines and weights, a spin room, and 200 exercise classes on-demand. There are seven tennis courts (lessons are available), two pickleball courts, and a basketball half-court. The redesigned 18-hole golf course is scheduled to open in late 2018, along with a clubhouse, restaurant, and a tavern (slated for spring 2019 completion).
The Phoenician Club Spa is a freestanding luxury building dedicated to pampering and wellness with an extensive treatments menu and 24 treatment rooms. The spa also features a rooftop pool with cabanas for rent, and healthy poolside fare and cocktails are on offer (at extra cost). The spa’s Movement Studio (fitness and yoga center), is equipped with state-of-the-art weights and cardio equipment, plus a variety of classes such as yoga, aerial yoga, sound mediation, and water fitness (held in the rooftop pool). A nail salon, spa boutique, and Drybar salon are also located here.
Funicians Club has plenty to keep kids ages 5 to 12 occupied. The Athletic Club also houses a huge, family-friendly activity lounge with shuffleboard, foosball, pool tables, arcade, and video games. Activities such as guided Camelback Mountain nature hikes, golf cart safari tours, and bird watching tours, can all be arranged with concierge (at extra cost).
The Retail arcade, located in the main building, features a handful of upscale shops selling resort wear, athleisure gear, fine jewelry, and gifts. There’s also a tennis shop in the Athletic Club. The Phoenician’s sprawling Conference Center offers a range of meeting, function, and convention event spaces, with topnotch audio visual capabilities. There’s also a Fedex Office Print & Ship Center located on-site. Limousine, shuttle van, taxi, and car rental services to and from the airport can all be arranged with the hotel (at extra cost).
With over 250 varieties of cacti and succulents, the Cactus Garden is open to guests for self-guided strolls, or guided tours with the resident horticulturalist can be arranged with concierge. Undercover and valet parking are available at extra cost, though it’s a considerable walk (via elevators and escalators) to rooms for self-parkers.
The daily resort fee covers Wi-Fi, free morning yoga classes, cocktail mixology classes, supervised child care at dinner time, one hour of daily tennis court usage, two hours of free daily bicycle rentals, and 50 percent off fitness classes.
Five restaurants and bars, plus a marketplace and 24-hour room service
Open for dinner, J&G Steakhouse is a Jean Georges restaurant with a seasonal food and drinks menu and a choice of indoor or al fresco patio dining. Live entertainment is provided on Friday and Saturday nights. Mowry & Cotton offers modern American fare, open for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and brunch on weekends. The Phoenician Tavern (to come in 2019) specializes in bar food and signature burgers. The tea room, located off the main lobby, serves traditional afternoon tea service featuring finger sandwiches, scones, and pastries with a live piano backdrop. The Thirsty Camel (in the lobby), offers a full bar and Sonoran-inspired bar snacks, with live entertainment every evening. Located poolside, Kalio Kebobery serves Mediterranean-inspired cuisine in a casual open-air space. The Marketplace (located near the lobby) is a gourmet cafe offering espresso and specialty coffees, house-made pastries, sandwiches, gelato, and other tasty snacks. Room service is available 24 hours.
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