Sunday, January 31, 2016


A tourism industry news update from the Scottsdale Convention & Visitors Bureau

Who says you can have too much of a good thing? When it comes to luxurious accommodations in a picturesque desert setting, there is no such thing, and Scottsdale is gearing up to welcome a new resort to its roster. Hyatt Hotels Corporation announced the opening of Andaz Scottsdale Resort & Spa, which is slated to debut in mid- 2016. As with other Andaz properties, the Scottsdale resort will immerse guests with indigenous experiences to the location. Its mid-century, desert inspired interior pays homage to the 1950s desert art scene influenced by architects, artists and graphic designers, including Alexander Girard, Frank Lloyd Wright and Paolo Soleri. In that same spirit, the resort will collaborate with local artists, musicians and designers to create events and programs hosted in the Andaz Salon based on themes unique to the Sonoran Desert. Andaz Scottsdale Resort & Spa will include 201 bungalow style guest rooms, a full service spa and salon, and more than 20,000 square feet of meeting and event spaces on more than 22 acres of land. Plus, it will house a large pool and sundeck with views of the iconic Camelback Mountain. For media information, contact Meredith Strodel at or 310-664-8867.

It turns out, we don’t need to wait for “The Big One” to bring the ocean to Scottsdale’s doorstep. We just needed Amram Knishinsky, the mastermind behind Scottsdale’s Butterfly Wonderland, the largest indoor butterfly atrium in the U.S. This July, Knishinsky will bring the sea to this landlocked desert with the opening of OdySea Aquarium on the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community. The 16-acre complex will be the largest aquarium in the Southwest and promises a high-tech, high-entertainment, oceanic adventure. Book an under the sea off-site activity or event at the aquarium already dubbed “SeaWorld meets Disneyland.” With floor-to-ceiling windows that offer aquatic life viewing – even in the restrooms – and underwater acrylic tunnels that lead to each level, your attendees will be surrounded by marine life at every angle. They will explore bayous, coral reefs and deep abysses in exhibits such as “Rivers of the World,” Amazon Rivers,” and “Penguins.” And in the “The Bizarre & the Beautiful,” exhibit, your attendees will find jellyfish, octopuses and seahorses. Experience a teambuilding activity like no other with SeaTREK, an underwater program that will allow your group to descend deep into the water and meet marine life face-to-face. Make a day of it with stops at The Shops at OdySea in the Desert, a 78,000-square-foot open-air marketplace showcasing local retailers and restaurants, and Fliteshop, an indoor sky diving facility, both opening in July. For media information, contact Debi Bridges at or 480-306-4242.

Scottsdale boasts luxurious resorts, restaurants, spas and more. When your meetings goers are spoiled with all that comfort and luxury, how they get to all those amenities is a detail that can’t be overlooked. With Dunn Transportation’s new executive coaches, your group will travel in style. Dunn’s new fleet includes two premium vehicles that can seat up to 37 passengers. Your attendees will enjoy the comforts of the leather reclining seats, flat-screen televisions with DVD capabilities, as well as real compartment capabilities for conveniently traveling with luggage or golf clubs. For media information, contact Margaret Dunn at or 480-970-3866.  

We’re calling it now— 2016 is the year of the “bleisure” traveler. A new year means new travel trends, and this year, the name of the game is coupling business and leisure travel. According to a 2015 trend report by Skift, business travelers are looking to work hard and play hard during their work-related trips, tagging on vacation days to squeeze in some fun. While Scottsdale boasts world-class meeting and convention spaces, its downtime activities are just as memorable. If your meetings goers are looking for some playtime once your Scottsdale conference has ended, point them in the direction of the destination’s finest hotspots and activities

Dust off your boots and cowboy hat, because cowboy culture is alive and well in Scottsdale. Your attendees can see how the real cowboys of the American West lived at Scottsdale’s newest museum, Western Spirit: Scottsdale’s Museum of the West. Peruse the exhibits and learn a thing or two about life in the Wild West. This museum is only a year old, but it has earned quite a name for itself recently being named a Smithsonian Affiliate. If your attendees are looking to giddy up after a long week of meetings, direct them to the Arizona Cowboy College. They’ll leave their travels as honorary cowboys after a day (or more) of this cowboy camp, where they’ll learn to ride a horse, lasso cattle and more.

If your group’s idea of playtime is a tee time, Scottsdale’s world-class golf courses are sure to pique their interest. They can perfect their golf swing with Fore-Max Golf Fitness program at The Westin Kierland Resort & Spa or follow in the footsteps of golf greats like Phil and Tiger at TPC Scottsdale. Or have them enjoy a night on the town with a laidback game at TopGolf Riverwalk over some drinks.

For those looking for a little more adventuresome play, Scottsdale’s Sonoran Desert backdrop is their playground. Catch the best views of the Valley from a hot air balloon with Hot Air Expeditions, Inc. or Rainbow Ryders, Inc. or explore the rugged terrain on foot with a guided hike through the 30,200 acres of protected land at Scottsdale McDowell Sonoran Preserve. Arizona Outback Adventures can teach them all about the desert inhabitants that call this beautiful yet rugged land home.

After all that work and all those meetings, your attendees will need a little R&R. Suggest they partake in some indigenous spa treatments in this premier wellness destination. They can get pampered with the Aroma-Botanica Massage Treatment at The Spa at Talking Stick Resort, during which therapists use herbs and blooms to create a soothing sensory ritual. And the Agave Signature Organic Facial at Agave, The Arizona Spa at The Westin Kierland Resort & Spa will wash all the stress of the meetings away. For media information, contact Clare Hahne at or 480-889-2709.        

If your meetings goers seem a bit quiet and subdued, add in a shot of tequila, a splash of rum, a pint of ale, or a nice pour of wine.  When you book some of Scottsdale’s booze-filled teambuilding activities for your meetings, you’re crafting a recipe for success. After a tipple, you’ll have your attendees letting go of their inhibitions and chatting in no time.

This year, W Scottsdale is unveiling two new amenities that will let groups imbibe. With Mixology 101, a W Scottsdale Mixologist will lead your group in a class on how to craft inventive cocktails, getting their creativity flowing and inspiring camaraderie. In the evenings, keep the momentum rolling with a Sushi Making and Sake Tasting in W Scottsdale’s Sushi Roku Restaurant. Your attendees will learn the culinary secrets on how to roll sushi while tasting a flight of sake and learning how to best pair it with their favorite sushi. For media information, contact Christina McGoldrick at

Give your attendees a taste of the Grand Canyon state’s award-winning wines at LDV Wine Gallery in downtown Scottsdale. Plan a private, off-site event at the tasting room and wine shop, and your guests will sample Rhone varietals from Southeastern Arizona vineyard, LDV Winery. Your group will enjoy charcuteries boards and wine flights, while learning about the history of the Arizona wine industry from the passionate winemakers themselves. For media information, contact Susie Timm at or 480-200-2766.

Remember to log onto for additional tourism news, press kits and releases, media tour information and more. And you can always turn to our public relations team for additional assistance, from photo needs to story ideas. If you are interested in being considered for a group or individual media tour, please fill out the form here. To keep up with Scottsdale’s latest news and happenings, follow @ScottsdalePR on Twitter, @ScottsdaleCVB on Instagram or visit

Scottsdale Convention & Visitors Bureau Contacts:
Laura McMurchie, VP of Communications
Direct: 480-429-2253 

Megan Neighbor, Director of Communications
Direct: 480-889-2716

Clare Hahne, Communications Coordinator
Direct: 480-889-2709


from Official Travel Site for Scottsdale, Arizona |

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