An Insider's Guide to Planning a Bachelorette Party in Scottsdale, Arizona
Iconic architect Frank Lloyd Wright knew a good thing when he saw it. For him, Scottsdale provided the perfect location for Taliesin West, his winter home, which now serves as a major attraction for architecture and design buffs. But sun seekers and nature lovers will also favor this Arizona oasis in the Sonoran Desert for its weather, artsy vibe, and incredible resorts. From spas and art galleries to restaurants and shopping, this new built Western town offers a wide assortment of resorts and activities that will surely please even the most diverse group. That's why it's the perfect locale for your bachelorette weekend. There really is something for everyone in Scottsdale.
Shop a boutique filled boulevard, aptly named Fifth Avenue, learn to ride (or wrangle) horses, pedal a party bike from bar to bar, float above the cacti-filled landscape in a hot air balloon, or hang out in a spa suite en masse. However you choose to celebrate, this festive town, conveniently located just 20 minutes from the Phoenix Airport, offers an abundance of activities tailor-made for Instagram photos, uproarious fun, and creating lasting memories.
We put together a bachelorette party guide to Scottsdale, complete with hotel recommendations, our very favorite restaurants, and activities for every type of crew. Start planning the ultimate getaway with these insider tips. For even more info about the Southwest city, visit Experience Scottsdale.
Where to Stay: Andaz Scottsdale Resort & Spa
A trendy, all bungalow enclave, which fuses industrial-chic with Frank Lloyd Wright organic concepts, the Andaz celebrates Scottsdale's deeply entrenched, artistic alter ego. Showcasing works from Cattle Track Arts Compound's bevy of local artists throughout the property, Andaz awakens everyone's inner art lover. Learn to paint Camelback Mountain, which is seen from the resort, or a distinctive Arizona sunset, led by a local artist, at Paint & Sip, a wine and art adventure hosted by the Andaz. The main attraction, though, is the Instagram-worthy pool, which sits in the center of the property. Rent a cabana for the day and order poolside drinks and bites while relaxing in the sun. (Want your own pool for a few days? Book "The Retreat", a king-sized residence with a private pool.) Be sure to spend a morning at the resort's Palo Verde Spa & Apotehecary to really get relaxed before your big day. (We recommend the Himalayan Salt Stone massage.)
Where to Stay: Four Seasons Scottsdale
The Sonoran Desert is filled with flora and fauna. Delve into the perfume of the land when your crew comes together to blend a custom fragrance at the Aroma Design Bar at The Spa at Four Seasons Scottsdale. Under the direction of a dedicated alchemist, guests blend body butter, polish, and essential oils, then put those creation to the test during the subsequent spa treatments. Stretching across 40 acres, the glamorous resort encompasses 22 suites and 210 guest rooms. Golfers will swoon over the Weiskopf & Morrish-designed courses, while hikers can trek the terrain on a Zen Hike, led by a resort guide, which incorporates yoga stops along the way.
Where to Stay: Sanctuary Camelback Mountain Resort & Spa
Gussy up in the comfort of your own mountainside residence. Spa House, one of eight design-centric homes that compose part of this celeb-approved resort, takes up 3,500-square-feet—plenty of room for your entire group. With four bedrooms and four neighboring casitas, it accommodates up to 16 people. Both a Spa Concierge and "Sensei in Residence" organize wellness-oriented stays, including in house treatments, yoga and fitness classes. Make sure to have dinner at Sanctuary's Elements restaurant, overseen by Food Network Chef Beau MacMillan.
What to Do: Bird's Eye View
Take to the clouds with Hot Air Expeditions. Both sunrise and sunset balloon trips take advantage of the desert's magnificent, multi-colored glow. From above, the Sonoran terrain unfolds as a magic carpet. Applaud the flight with bubbly upon landing.
What to Do: AZ Food Tours
A bite here, a bite there. That's what makes a food tour the best way to chew and digest your way through a culinary-mad city like Scottsdale. Helmed by a fellow foodie, tours take you for either a five-stop lunch nosh in Old Town or a Progressive dinner where you'll sample various notable eateries.
What to Do: Trek It
It's worth it. Get up early to traverse the Cholla Trail along Camelback Mountain at sunrise. Though it's a steady uphill slog for almost two miles, the colors exploding over the desert make every step worth your while. Disclaimer: This popular trail has steep, rocky sections, with drop offs on both sides.
What to Do: Pedal It
Bar hop in Old Town by party bike. Guides make group cycling easy with humorous commentary, and each bike holds up to 16 riders, so you can rely on your friends when you need a little break. You'll work for your dram, though, pedaling from venue to pub on a two hour tour. Sip a little bit at every stop.
What to Do: Play Tourist
Visit Taliesin West, Frank Lloyd Wright's desert masterpiece, to feel Scottsdale's lifeblood. Perched like a cactus flower just outside the city, this 1930-era studio sanctuary enlivens the desert landscape, even as it fuses with it. The on-site tours of the property will especially delight design aficionados.
What to Do: Go Shopping
Take the free Downtown Trolley or LimeBike to procure a few Scottsdale-style souvenirs. Try Mahsa, Stephanie's, and Carmen for fashion, Bischoff's Shades of the West for cowboy boots and western garb, Poisoned Pen Bookstore for mysteries to read around the pool, Chief Dodge Indian Jewelry for turquoise and silver bracelets, and Vintage by Misty for decades old platform shoes and fashion from the past.
Where to Eat: Weft & Warp Bar + Kitchen
Brunch lovers should make the Andaz's Weft & Warp Bar + Kitchen part of their morning routine. Grab a table at the glass enclosed restaurant, where you'll take in stunning views of the Camelback Mountains while you dine, and dig into seasonal and local bites like a short stack of blue corn pancakes, dirty hashbrowns, or the grilled squash and arugula salad topped with a fried egg. (If you like a little heat, request the restaurant's homemade hot sauces.) Feeling thirsty? Handcrafted cocktails, made by the Andaz's on-site mixologist, are available all day long. The house Bloody Mary is not to be missed.
Where to Eat: The Mission
On cooler days, take over the patio at The Mission, a modern Latin American restaurant in Old Town. For brunch, start with a cold margarita and ten ingredient (plus) guacamole. On Sundays, hungry carnivores should order the "Pig Out," their all-you-can-eat taco offering. Chorizo porchetta is a must.
Where to Eat: Fnb
Some restaurants welcome you like family. At Old Town's intimate gastro-bistro, Fnb, co-owner Pavle Milic, celebrator of Arizona wine, personally explains the daily menu, an homage to gourmet comfort food. Chef Charleen Badman's elevates vegatables into something exciting and incredibly memorable. You'll never think of carrots the same after trying the heirloom carrots with harissa mayo, dukka, and avocado. Finish your meal by ordering the Creekstone Farm's ribeye with poblanos and roasted tomato and lamb riblets with cous cous.
Where to Eat: Diego Pops
Grab a quick one at this innovative Mexican diner. Featuring a mouthwatering menu based on Mexican street food with a twist, this lively hub has stellar fare, from tacos to poke. Nibble mango jalapeno wings, Brussels sprout nachos, grilled corn, and plantain tacos—among other tasty treats.
Where to Eat: Fat Ox
Twenty Five layer lasagna fits the bill to feed your team of bridemaids. Add in the 28-ounce, dry-aged porterhouse, easily divided among friends, and Fat Ox will warm all Italian cuisine loving souls. Serving dishes from every region of Italy, this eatery makes more than ten kinds of fresh pasta daily. End with the affogato—the secret's in the soft-served hazelnut gelato, but we won't tell.
Where to Eat: Super Chunk Sweets & Treats
Satisfy that proverbial sweet tooth at Super Chunk, a small batch dessert shop that boggles the mind with its bold combinations and western-inspired flavors. Candied jalapeno, cinnamon, and cayenne heat up Cowpuncher cookies, chocolate chip treats are composed from mesquite flour, and caramel corn boasts a hint of bacon.
Where to Drink: The Entertainment District
It's hot in the dessert, so you'll get thirsty. Hydrate the adult way in the Entertainment District where haunts such as Dierks Bentley's Whiskey Row and Bottled Blonde await. For wine lovers, Kazimierz World Wine Bar (Kaz Bar) amazes with its legion of options. Find artfully made cocktails at Counter Intuitive or visit the Rusty Spur for a saloon-style feeling.
Where to Drink: Hash Kitchen
Don't hold back. Build your own Bloody Mary at Arizona's biggest Bloody Mary bar. After that, the only decision you'll need to make is which creative hash dish to order. From Herb Fried Chicken Hash to Huevos Rancheros Hash, the menu specializes in melange dishes of crispy potatoes, eggs, toppings and biscuits. Prefer pancakes? They make those, too.