You’d think after a long, hot summer spent in LA, the last place I’d choose to go in the fall was a desert city like Phoenix. But actually, other than the fact that fall is one of the best times to visit Phoenix (average temperatures remain in the pleasant 60s and 70s), it’s a place that seemingly revolves around relaxation and renewal — the mountainous landscape, the air that welcomes deep breaths, and perhaps most importantly, the many resorts eager to pamper you into pure bliss.
For a truly restorative experience, I recommend starting your journey at the Phoenician, a deluxe hotel I was invited to stay at as a guest that recently earned the “North America’s Leading Resort 2013” award at the 20th World Travel Awards. Practically every square foot of the Phoenician’s 250 acres is devoted to health, wellness, and peace of mind, all starting in the guestrooms.
Whether you choose one of the Phoenician’s 583 rooms or its smaller boutique hotel, the 60-room, Five Star-rated Canyon Suites, you’re assured a luxurious stay.
Just look at the entrance and lobby that greet you at the Canyon Suites.
This is the view from one of the guestroom’s private balcony — the perfect spot to watch the sunrise and enjoy a cup of coffee in the morning (complimentarily delivered to your room on a silver platter, of course).
Just walking the grounds of the Phoenician can be a restorative experience; both the main hotel and the Canyon Suites have tranquil cactus gardens waiting to be explored. You’ll likely stumble upon a few cute jackrabbits doing their own exploring.
Need respite from the heat? Try one of the nine swimming pools on the property, including one with mother-of-pearl tile.
The Phoenician is also home to the Centre for Well-Being, a spa with a focus on alternative therapies (like cupping therapy and Reiki) blended with more traditional spa treatments such as body wraps, facials, massages (like the amazing 80-Minute holistic massage), and more. In between treatments, guests can sit quietly in the Centre’s Meditation Atrium and cultivate inner peace.
The Centre for Well-Being also offers guided hikes up Camelback Mountain, the base of which is a convenient 10-minute walk away. At the top (or however far up you want to go), you’ll see the vastness of the Phoenician, as well as the surprisingly green surrounding city of Scottsdale, just outside of Phoenix.
A day spent exploring the property, beautifying and detoxing at the Centre, and lounging on your private balcony can certainly work up an appetite. Luckily, the Phoenician has several eating options, including Il Terrazzo, an Italian restaurant with the softest, most flavorful artisan breads you’ve ever tasted.
Each slice (yes, I had multiple slices — trust me, it’s worth it) complimented the flavors of each dinner course, especially the mache and roasted beet salad with crispy salsify, candied pecans, avocado vinaigrette, and rhubarb “scallop.”