The Phoenician Resort: Summer Family Fun
Author(s): Robin Roth
Editor: Aaron Hulse
Published: June 5, 2014

The Phoenician Resort……

Summer Family Fun

And The Sweetest Suites Anywhere

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Story and photos by: Robin Roth with other photos provided by The Phoenician… 


After enjoying the most lavish hotels and resorts around the world, I have come to the realization that The Phoenician is without a doubt, one of my favorite resort destinations.  

Picture, if you will, a resort with all the comforts of home, a staff tending to your every desire, all the opulence you can dream of, in spectacular surroundings, at a location where there is so much to do; then you have pictured Scottsdale’s Phoenician. Immediately, upon entering its doors, as if by magic, all of the pressure, tension, stress and anxiety I carry with me, seemed to instantaneously melt away.

I was quite impressed by this jewel box of a luxury resort. All of the personal touches, attention to detail, and impeccable service, make each guest feel like royalty. A well-dressed, well-spoken, professional and friendly staffer welcomed me, checked me in, and saw to all of my needs. I observed that all of the hotel guests were treated in the same manner!

The resorts stunning entrance, with its elegant, yet inviting fine Italian marble décor, the huge fountain in the middle of the lobby and the glorious Scottsdale sunset shining in, seemed to greet me with its own Arizona tranquility and peace. I found the chic, plush, yet casual ambiance The Phoenician radiates, very beautiful.                             

The lobby’s charm comes from its easy and alluring comfort. Despite the sophistication of the interior design, the atmosphere is casual and warm. I must say, that this is, without a doubt, one of the few hotels that lives up to its promised elegance and stellar service. That is most likely two of the reasons Arizona’s premier AAA Five Diamond resort has been honored with multi awards across every facet of the hotel. 

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This luxurious hideaway is nestled on 250 picturesque acres at the base of the southeast side of Camelback Mountain. The resort effortlessly blends its chic environment, stylish elegance and classic Scottsdale hospitality to make its guests feel happy and at ease. Today, the word "luxury" has so often been degraded by overuse. Everything has a "luxury" component these days…. But in the view of knowledgeable, demanding, extravagant travelers, "luxury hotel" has to mean something very special and specific.

In my opinion, The Phoenician is a beacon of luxury. This retreat is situated and tucked away amidst the lush magnificent surroundings of the Sonoran Desert. Although, once inside its protective, serine environment, it is hard to realize that its enviable location is right in the heart of Scottsdale.

The lavish sprawling resort has a unique sense of class and its own distinctive Arizona style and charm. I enjoyed a tranquil stroll, touring the heavenly grounds of this absolutely breathtaking property including the exceptional two-acre Cactus Garden.

Accommodations- The resort has 643 total accommodations, with 577 guestrooms, 62 suites, and four Presidential Suites. The guestrooms and suites are available in a choice of three locations: 

I stayed in a spectacular Casita Suite. I was awestruck when I walked into my plush, opulent, and memorable suite. The truly amazing Casita Suites feature hand-carved travertine fireplaces. The décor is so beautiful and perfect for any guest with any style preference. I found it so richly handsome and very comfortable. It just works!

Another option is "The main building", which is centrally located near the shops, restaurants and the meeting rooms.

Then, there are The Canyon Suites, nestled against Camelback Mountain. It is actually a boutique resort-within-a-resort featuring its own secluded pool and cabanas. 

The Canyon Suites is Arizona’s only Forbes Five-Star/AAA Five Diamond hotel. Quite impressive!

Presidential Suites, offer approximately 2,400 square feet of elegance and luxury.

Located on the far end of the main building and The Canyon Suites, each features dramatic vistas, two bedrooms with separate bathing and dressing areas, oversized living area with a Steinway baby grand piano, a dining room and a full-service kitchen with separate entrance. These suites’ amenities are abundant and without a doubt, will satisfy all travelers’ needs!


In addition to its 643 guestrooms, The Phoenician offers an alternative resort experience in The Phoenician Residences, a fractional ownership community located near the property’s main entrance. 


WATER FEATURES- Eight swimming pools and a 165-foot water slide.

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Piñatas – A regional gift shop featuring diverse items and various sundries. 

Under the Sun – This shop offers trendy swimwear

Seasons – A boutique featuring casual and formal fashions for women


Croquet lawn

Basketball half-court

Water volleyball and basketball


Lawn bowling



Camelback Mountain trails



The Phoenician’s activities program offers pleasurable and enlightening opportunities for every age group. 

Adults -- A complete schedule of activities for adults is available daily. 

Children -- The Funicians Club is a daily, supervised program designed for young guests between the ages of 5 and 12. Each day’s schedule is complete with games, crafts and activities, complemented by a digital technology center and numerous indigenous offerings. Sounds like fun to me!

Teens – With Nintendo Wii, Xbox games and board games at the Family Activity Center, a wide range of unique experiences are available.


GUEST ASSISTANCE at The Phoenician includes:

Foreign Language 

Business Center 

Cyber Café

Go Rentals 

Meeting Facilities 

Guided Tours


World-Class Leisure is offered on  the 250 Acres of Paradise for Golfers…


The Phoenician golf course offers 27 holes of championship play on three, nine-hole par 70 combinations; designed by Jack Snyder, Homer Flint and Ted Robinson, Sr.

The courses feature dazzling mountain and city views. There is a golf academy, lessons and clinics available.

The Phoenician’s award-winning 11-court Tennis Garden is the only resort facility in the Southwest to offer four playing surfaces. Tennis anyone?


A Wedding Wonderland

If I were going to be married, I would not think twice about celebrating my treasured day in the exquisite surroundings of The Phoenician’s extraordinary grandeur. Congrats and kudos to the lucky couples who do!

The Phoenician’s Casita Suites

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I received the most lovely and memorable experience at the Casita Buildings. Each casita is impressively divine, with its own individual fashion. My room was spectacularly gorgeous. Every single piece of furniture and décor was stunning, smart, elegant, rich, warm, and cozy. I needed to push myself each time I had to leave my suite. The living room area with the fireplace was so posh that I really felt quite spoiled. Sitting down in the dining area for my breakfast room service was beyond a pampering experience. The bathrooms and toiletry amenities were fantastic. The bedroom as well as the bed was so wonderfully comfortable. I haven’t slept this well in months. I loved every second of my stay in this fabulous Casita suite.                   

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The Canyon Suites at The Phoenician

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The Canyon Suites at The Phoenician features 40 suites and 20 guestrooms, along with a variety of personalized, exclusive features for its guests.  Michael Cascone, President of Forbes Travel Guide stated: “Our Star ratings recognize the finest hotels, restaurants and spas in the world. These ratings serve as guideposts for consumers seeking exceptional travel experiences.” To see more, visit www.forbestravelguide.com/about/ratings

The Canyon Suites Cares: Within the last year, The Canyon Suites has introduced two new programs. The first is the hotel’s expanded dog-friendly program.” Through a special partnership with the Arizona Humane Society, 10 percent of sales from the first full year of The Canyon Suites’ canine room service menu were donated to the organization to aid homeless, ill and injured animals. Wouldn’t this be a better world if all hotels embraced this concept? 

In addition, the property unveiled hypoallergenic accommodations designed exclusively for those guests with allergies.

It’s a whole new Family-Friendly Summer Surge World at The Phoenician 

Of course, The Phoenician continues to keep its trend of sophistication and luxury that it is well known for. However, it also wants to stay current with a family-friendly orientation. The resort has married these two concepts together beautifully. The property wants the world to know that summertime is particularly family-friendly, with the recent introduction of SURGE, its new Splash Pad. Summer fun includes The SURGE Shuffle. This is where both guests and staff alike show off their best dance moves. For parents, an adjacent Jacuzzi and nearby bar provide peaceful locales for keeping an eye on their youngsters at SURGE. There is also the new kid friendly SURGE menu, consisting of specialties such as a bottomless soda/juice cup with free refills, chicken tenders, hamburgers, hummus, fruit and ice cream bars -- all perfectly designed to make children and perhaps their parents happy!

I envy the fortunate kids who get to experience The Phoenician childhood world.

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The way I see it, The Phoenician is making a big splash with its one-of-a-kind “Awards of Summer” offer. This offer will extend well beyond the season for five lucky guests. Staycationers and out-of-town visitors alike who book and stay at The Phoenician between May 30 and September 1, 2014, will be entered to win one of five, two-night New Year’s Eve packages at The Canyon Suites. I truly wish I had young children to take advantage of this paradise for families. What a wonderful summer it would be to spend time and fun with the kids at the pools, relax at the spa, and enjoy all the activities during the off-season when the rates are down and there are less people to deal with. Escape the heat and enjoy a family summer vacation, sounds like a win-win to me!

From my view, summer at The Phoenician is a perfect one-stop shop for those looking for a mix of adult excitement and a family getaway. While the kids are safely being entertained, parents can chill out by the chic Mother of Pearl pool, hang out on the golf course, play tennis, or be pampered at the spa. I say YES, YES, YES and YES!!! In other words, everyone has the opportunity to have a blast. Families know this, which is why an incredible number of them return year after year to this amazing vacation destination.

FYI: There are new themed programs and activities to enjoy during the summer holidays. 

The Independence Weekend – IGNITE -- will include July 5 fireworks; the band Young Country; as well as an indoor carnival.  

To wrap up the season, The Phoenician will host “On the Boardwalk” during the Labor Day Weekend with food trucks, rides and a special concert. I am ALL IN!!! It is very clear that luxury and family-friendly fun go hand-in-hand here!

The “Awards of Summer” offer starts at just $159 per night.  For more information and reservations, please call (480) 941-8200 or 800-888-8234 and mention rate code: SUMMER; or visit www.thephoenician.com/offers.

The newly expanded Funicians Club for the youngsters offers both full- and half-day sessions with lunch, 365 days a year. EXPLORE, PLAY and LEARN! Advanced reservations are required and can be arranged by contacting the Concierge at (480) 423-2572


 'Discover The Phoenician with Phoe-Phoe & Friends',

Is a beautiful children’s story from Happy Lady Books to commemorate The Phoenician’s 25th Anniversary, and promote its ever-growing menu of activities.                                         


Available at the resort and on amazon.com for just $15, the publication recently received an award from the Arizona Lodging and Tourism Association. For more information, visit www.happyladybooks.com.


It’s the Real Deal!!!!

The abundantly charming, classy and charismatic Wanda and Natalie serve this perfect, proper tea party with chic sophistication, graceful style and a warm flair. Thank you ladies… well done as always!  I can’t blame them for loving what they do! These stellar, joyful ladies have been a constant at The Phoenician for years… People come see them, as well at the tea service.

                                      The stars of the tea room, Wanda and Natalie

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The time-honored tradition of afternoon tea is served daily in classic English tradition in the Lobby Tea Court…I have written stories about the proper and authentic tea service all over the world; I say, without hesitation, that this is hands down, my number one favorite tea service in America! Everything from the sandwiches, scones, sweets, to the dining room, service and music is storybook perfect!

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  Adele, Robin and Beth Chloe and Robin

You begin your magnificent tea service with your selection of tea (a large variety of gourmet teas to choose from), served in your own individual tea pot. The first service is a lavish spread of delicate and yummy, fresh, traditional finger sandwiches.

For the second course, you will be served fresh and very luscious homemade buttermilk, and cranberry, scones.YUM! They are the best scones ever and they are served with scrumptious Devonshire cream and homemade strawberry preserves. To die for!!!! 

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Lastly, you will be served a delectable selection of petit fours.

If you have gluten issues, the tearoom also serves a gluten free tea menu; so not to worry!!

Furthermore, they serve delicious vegetarian teatime sandwiches. 

Gluten free


Oh and for more fun, I urge you to splurge and go for the Grand Royale Tea (for a small extra charge), which includes unlimited Perrier-Jouet Grand Brut. I enjoy adding some orange juice to my champagne. This ancient afternoon proper tea custom is one of my all-time favorite things to share with friends, family, and even business associates. Folks, they have this down at The Phoenician!!! 

The Centre for Well-Being SPA AND SALON Mila

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The resort features a fabulously seductive spa…The Centre for Well-Being. I felt the tranquility and peace of the Sonoran Desert here. This luxury spa in Scottsdale is a serene refuge for the mind, body and soul. The spa, as well as the salon, offers an impressive array of pampering and rejuvenating services and treatments. This is a must, so don’t miss out. The spa therapists and the salon technicians are amazing and trained with the latest and most deluxe treatments anywhere. No doubt, it is my “happy place” at the resort. I loved relaxing in The Meditation Atrium before pampering myself with the MEMORABLE 80-minute ESSENTIAL HEALING MASSAGE. My healing therapist, Maria Canole, was tremendous. 

This massage calms the senses, boosts immunity, decreases tension and brings

balance. There are numerous á la carte services ranging from signature body treatments and facials to energy therapies and fitness classes. You can’t go wrong with anything on the spa menu…

I had the privilege and good fortune of having my hair styled at Salon Mila by the very beautiful and talented stylist, Nabo. My hair has never looked so amazing before or since. 

                              Salon Experts… Nabu, Kasey, Ella, Vicki, and Raya

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You can see my Nabo-styled hair for yourself, as I am the blonde in the middle of the tea for 3, photo above! 

Fitness and Wellness: Facilities include a state-of-the-art weight room, showcasing the latest Matrix Fitness equipment, including treadmills, hybrid cycles and elliptical ascent trainers, as well as a cardio studio, men's and women's locker rooms, boutique shop (where I definitely did some damage), a Meditation Atrium and the Waters Bar.


Il Terrazzo – The restaurant’s nouveau Italian cuisine can be enjoyed within an inviting indoor setting, or al fresco, overlooking the lawns and pools. It is open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and also features a contemporary Sunday brunch.


J&G Steakhouse – Integrating stunning Valley views, this establishment features a customizable menu of premium meats and fish, from the vision of world-renowned chef and restaurateur, Jean-Georges Vongerichten.

Café & Ice Cream Parlor – This whimsical spot offers a variety of fun favorites, including freshly baked pastries, deli salads, sandwiches, cappuccino and ice creams. Breakfast, lunch, and snacks are also available “to-go” for a picnic or for the road.


Oasis Grill – This outdoor grill at the Oasis Pool offers signature salads and sandwiches.

Canyon Pool Grill – Casual outdoor dining at The Canyon Suites pool

Praying Monk --This Renaissance-style dining salon and working wine cellar comes complete with its own Sommelier and a multi-million-dollar wine collection.

This option is available for private parties of up to 16 guests.

Relish Burger Bistro -- Casual clubhouse dining with a view of the golf course is the place to go for the all-American classic, with a twist.

The Thirsty Camel – This is a great hang-out spot any time of day, offering spectacular panoramic views of the surrounding Valley. The lounge features light fare, an extensive beverage menu and a humidor with specialty cigars, all complemented by live evening entertainment.

Tee Box Dining  For a private, romantic, gourmet dinner for two served under the stars, be sure to book this experience, located on the highest point of the resort’s Desert Golf Course. This is what dreams are made of folks!

In-Room Dining with a Difference:

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I say, after a long day of sun and fun, do bring the restaurant to your room and enjoy the state of the art, next level of excellence in room service dining. I ordered breakfast one morning and was actually humbled by the detailed and extravagant set up service, complete with fresh flowers. They even delivered my own individual toaster to my suite, so my bread would be toasted to my liking, hot, and fresh. Yes, that happened!

It is evident that well-heeled travelers are increasingly faced with more grand choices than ever! The hospitality business continues to increase swiftly at the high-end level, with pinnacle tier hotels opening in many of the world’s most popular business and leisure destinations. If you are someone who enjoys creature comforts and standout service when you travel, this spectacular resort is for you. It is the perfect match for luxury travelers looking for a relaxed Arizona getaway with a dash of white-glove chic. I felt so sad leaving this heavenly hotel paradise. I long to return very soon and you will too.

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I would like to thank the ever so professional and luminous Denise Seomin, Director of Public Relations and Marketing Communications at The Phoenician, for all she did to assist in making this article possible.

Bravo to everyone at the splendid Phoenician in Scottsdale A++


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For more information:

The Phoenician and The Canyon Suites at The Phoenician

6000 East Camelback Road

Scottsdale, AZ 85251


Phone: (480) 941-8200

Toll-free: (800) 888-8234 (USA & Canada)

Fax: (480) 947-4311

Concierge: (480) 423-2572 

Websites: www.thephoenician.com and www.canyonsuites.com

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.

The Luxury Collection