Sunny Scottsdale


By Ruta Fox

Dreamy Days in the Desert

If winter’s dark days are taking their toll, book a trip to sunny Scottsdale. With its glorious mountains, clear blue skies, swaying palm trees, buzzy restaurants, sensational shopping, and cultural options, it’s a getaway that will provide a much-needed Vitamin D boost.

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Don’t bother packing much, Scottsdale Fashion Square offers it all – it’s luxury overload with Neiman Marcus, Louis Vuitton, Jimmy Choo, Prada, Gucci, Burberry, Brunello Cucinelli and more on the high-end, and everything from Anthropologie to Zara for fun fashion. Feast on a tasty cobb salad at Olive & Ivy or on brunch fare at sidewalk cafe Prep & Pastry. (Your Uber driver may have a Tesla.)

Head over to The 5th Avenue shopping district, which features several walkable blocks with restaurants and small boutiques. Order a latte at Cartel Coffee Lab and stop into Regency Modern for an amazing selection of gift items like Cire Trudon candles, luxe coffee table books, and collectible mid-century barware. From there, it’s an easy stroll to the Arts District with a bevy of art galleries, open late on Thursday nights.


Nearby and a must-do is Western Spirit – The Museum of The West, a Smithsonian affiliate, that features Western and Native American artifacts. The astounding exhibit of historical photographer Edward S. Curtis features almost a thousand sensitive portraits of the North American Indian and is perhaps the largest collection in the country. Upstairs is a show called The Gather, Scott T. Baxter’s beautiful black and white photographic homage to ranching and the American West.

Scottsdale’s Arizona Biltmore hotel is an architectural gem, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. Take the tour with the knowledgeable guide who explains the details and the unusual history of this 1929 marvel. Sit poolside for a drink at the Spire Bar after the tour, or inside at the gorgeous Wright Bar in the evening and enjoy the multi-colored Tequila Sunrise (it was invented there).

The food is great in Scottsdale, upscale restaurants abound and there’s even a Nobu. Cooper’s Hawk Winery features a Napa Style tasting room — sample seven to eight wines with a guide, explore their large retail wine selection and check out their wine club offerings. Indulge in short ribs or risotto or choose from their extensive menu but finish up with Valrhona chocolate cake or salted caramel crème brulée. Newish Chantico is the place for an upleveled Mexican dinner or brunch in the atrium-inspired room.

The Desert Botanical Garden features five curated short walks through the desert landscape showcasing dozens of cactus varieties. To see the desert from the air, Rainbow Ryders will take you up in a hot air balloon in the early morning or late afternoon. Luxurious spas are abundant in Scottsdale, should you need some wind-down time to rejuvenate. If you’re on the hunt for stylish home décor, Arhaus at Biltmore Fashion Square is next to the Ralph Lauren store.

Cap off your Scottsdale vacation with drinks and innovative dishes on the patio at Sanctuary Camelback Mountain’s Jade Bar at sunset. Overlooking the majestic Camelback mountain, it’s spectacular to see the nighttime sky evolve.

For more information please visit

Western Spirit The Museum of The West:

Arizona Biltmore:

Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant:

Desert Botanical Garden:

Rainbow Ryders:

Sanctuary Camelback Mountain Jade Bar:

Photography credits

Courtesy of Ruta Fox, Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant


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