What's New in Scottsdale, Ariz. - Fall 2020
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (Sept. 10, 2020) – 2020 has brought some big changes in the world, but one thing hasn't changed. This Sonoran Desert city continues to serve up sunny skies and a bright outlook for the future to match, with shiny and new dining options, updated resorts, and countless activities for locals and visitors alike. So, whether it's time to get back to traveling, or time to simply start planning a future getaway, as Scottsdale falls out of high summer temperatures and into the autumn breeze, we've rounded up the latest and greatest not to be missed when the time is right.
THE BIG NEWS: Opening later this month, Canopy by Hilton will join the arts district of Old Town Scottsdale and be the future home of Museum Square, a 13-story hotel, condo and apartment project. This 177-room resort – the first new-build hotel in Old Town in over a decade – will deliver a modern elegance with two dining experiences prominently featuring Southwest flavors, and a rooftop pool, perfect for enjoying the desert's unbeatable desert sunsets.
THREE MORE STAYS:
Coming Oct. 2020 is the Scottsdale area's first-ever Dark Sky Zone resort, ADERO, named after the canyon enveloping the six-story, 177-room property. ADERO's debut comes after a $100-million investment as a Marriott International Autograph Collection resort, and will provide elevated amenities to connect guests to its sensational desert views and surroundings – including the famed Four Peaks and McDowell Mountain Range.
In 2019, W Scottsdale began renovations to celebrate its 10th The refresh will be complete in October, with revamped rooms and an updated rooftop WET Deck, including new cabanas, plus a new bar and restaurant.
Sanctuary Resort & Spa perched atop Camelback Mountain recently unveiled refreshments of its private villa collection, including eight villas spanning more than an acre each. The Villas' amenities include private pools and jacuzzis, wrap-around terraces and home theaters.
THE HOT TICKET: SetJet, a membership-based private jet charter flying to six of the most popular West Coast destinations, recently announced a new flight route from Scottsdale to Cabo San Lucas – perfect for those who just can't choose between posh pool and spa scene in Scottsdale, and the beach for their next vacation.
FOUR INTIMATE ACTIVITIES:
Just 3.5 hours north of Scottsdale lies one of the seven natural wonders of the world, The Grand Canyon. Visitors can make the most of a vacation with DETOURS' private tour of the South Rim, now starting at $1,000 for up to five guests. The full-day experience includes a guide, luxury transportation – and a check mark on that bucket list.
The team at Stellar Adventures has transformed their desert excursions to private-only, for experiences that are high on safety and thrills. Take life by the handlebars on an ATV or trek the wild terrain behind the wheel of a UTV, or in a guide's backseat on an H1 Hummer tour, each for exciting rides all their own.
Keep your head in the clouds on a hot air balloon ride with Hot Air Expeditions or Rainbow Ryders – both now offering private flights at reduced costs to emphasize safety while enjoying unparalleled 360-degree views.
If there's one thing that can't be canceled this year, it's love. Mountain Shadows' new Intimate Wedding Package is perfect for weddings of 30 guests or less, with a ceremony, wedding cake, full set-up and dance floor, and more, all for $2,000.
THINGS TO DO + SEE
THE BIG NEWS: Canal Convergence – the free, large-scale public art event known for its annual, splashy takeover of the Scottsdale Waterfront – is returning this year, albeit in a different format. Taking place Nov. 6-Nov. 15, the outdoor event organized by Scottsdale Public Art will feature nine large-scale art installations and with social distancing in mind, these eye-catching works will be located across the entire Old Town Scottsdale area. Visitors can pick up or download a map, and drive, walk or bike the route to discover each piece. Then, the event continues virtually, with live music, workshops and artist talks online.
FOUR MORE FOR FAMILY FUN:
Owned and operated in Scottsdale since 2013, the golf cart tour company, JoyridesAZ, is welcoming fall riders with a new Tasty Gelato Tour. Cure a sweet tooth with stops at three local gelato shops while cruising downtown Scottsdale.
Calling all kiddos! Explore The Phoenix Zoo's most popular trails all from the comfort of the car with Cruise the Zoo, new this summer. Spot elephants, cheetahs, rhinos, lions, giraffes and more on this hour-long tour.
This summer, Wonderspaces, the rotating, interactive art show, introduced several new installations, such as “Our Top 100” by Jody Servon. The piece is a community-built playlist consisting of songs, and memories about songs, shared by participants in specific cities and towns.
With more than 50 golf courses in Scottsdale, this naturally socially distanced activity is prime for fall weather and new updates and offerings found out on the green this season are the cherry on top.
WINE + DINE
FIVE NEW SPOTS TO SIP + SAVOR:
Award-winning chef and owner of Scottsdale dining institution, Virtù Honest Craft, Gio Osso opened sister restaurant, Pizzeria Virtù in Old Town Scottsdale in February. The focus of the new pizzeria is authentic Neapolitan pizza, offering patrons a true taste of Naples in the Southwest.
Stratta Kitchen – a new, casual counter service concept conceived by James Beard Award-winning, two Michelin-star chef Alex Stratta – landed in central Scottsdale in August. Designed for delivery and takeout, the restaurant's menu features seasonal Mediterranean fare centered around fresh vegetables and clean proteins.
The new and highly anticipated fine dining experience, Francine, just opened last month in Scottsdale. Created by acclaimed restauranteur, Laurent Halasz, Francine is inspired by the cuisine and design from the South of France and classically French-trained Chef Brian Archibald is at the helm, with offerings that will change with the seasons.
Old Town Scottsdale also recently gained two new intimate “watering holes.” For the unpretentious and laid-back wine enthusiast, look no further than Wine Girl, just opened this spring. The stylish wine bar features twelve rotating wines and four locally brewed beers on tap. From the masterminds of Scottsdale's beloved restaurant, Citizen Public House, has come a new concept as of August – Benjamin's Upstairs. The limited-seating space located above Citizen Public House is now serving natural wines, and a selection of both small and large plates meant to be shared.
THREE ON OUR RADAR:
Ritz-Carlton, Paradise Valley – a 215-room, 20-acre new-build opening in 2021 – will have it all; exemplary service, spectacular views of Camelback Mountain, modern and sleek interiors, a 16,000-square-foot spa and a location just minutes from downtown Scottsdale. The resort has also been able to pivot amid construction to incorporate new safety measures and features, such as the installation of Plasma Air in every guestroom and common space. The progressive ionizer system has been proven to reduce airborne viruses and bacteria.
Projected for a 2021 opening, The Palmeraie, a $2-billion master-planned community, will be home to more than 60 luxury and specialty boutiques, and numerous dining outlets, with the luxurious Ritz-Carlton hotel at its center.
Coming later this fall is Chef Brett Vibber's new WILD Arizona Cuisine, set to open in a small boutique hotel called Cottontail Trails in Cave Creek, just outside Scottsdale. The restaurant will have only 30-40 seats and will feature fresh dishes from locally grown produce foraged by Vibber himself.
For more Scottsdale travel news and story ideas, visit www.scottsdalepressroom.com. For more information about Scottsdale's commitment to keeping residents and visitors safe, please visit the “Be Safe Scottsdale” page.