Scottsdale among top 5 cities for stay-cations

For Scottsdale residents, a vacation is only a short drive away.

At least that’s according to WalletHub, which chose Scottsdale as one of the five best cities in the country for “stay-cations” — when residents can relax in their own backyards, or at a resort nearby.

Overall, Scottsdale ranked fourth best city for stay-cations, trailing Orlando, which came in first. Atlanta and Cincinnati were second and third, respectively.

The financial-services website studied the 100 most populated cities in the U.S., looking at everything from number of golf courses and spas, to maid services and movie and bowling costs.

The findings? Scottsdale ranked fourth among cities for food and entertainment, and fifth for rest and relaxation. The city came in 21st for recreation activities.

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Perhaps unsurprisingly, Scottsdale also boasts the most public golf courses for every 100,000 residents of any large city in the country, according to the online report. The city came in fourth for most spas for every 100,000 residents (Honolulu was No. 1).

Scottsdale has both luxury and affordability, said Rachel Pearson, vice president of community and government affairs for the Scottsdale Convention Visitors Bureau.

stay-cationers can stay at Scottsdale’s high-end resorts and hotels this summer for up to 60 percent off peak-season rates, she said.

Visitors also can find complimentary cabanas, movies at the pool, fireworks and pool parties, Pearson said.

The bureau also has a “Summer in Scottsdale” campaign, with details at summerinscottsdale.com.

The campaign focuses on what to do from sunrise to sunset, including sunrise delights, midday coolers and sunset happenings, Pearson said.

The campaign will run through mid-August and includes online, e-mail and pay-per-click advertising as well as several billboards in Phoenix and Los Angeles, one of the city’s top feeder markets, she said.

According to WalletHub, this summer’s travel season is expected to be less costly than last year, with 42 percent of vacationers spending more than $1,500, and 10 percent spending more than $3,000, down from 46 percent and 13 percent last year, respectively. This is “due in part to a decrease in hotel and airfare costs in popular destinations,” the site said.

Here are some summer packages found at Scottsdale area resorts:

The Saguaro Scottsdale has a “Desert Splash” package. Every Saturday afternoon, the boutique hotel in the heart of downtown transforms into a pool party, complete with DJs and a sunscreen station. Stay at the resort June 1 through Sept. 30 and you’ll also receive Saguaro sunglasses, Chap Stick and a drink cooler. Rates start at $109.

— Rates starting at $129 at We-Ko-Pa Resort and Conference Center, which has a 24-hour casino, seven restaurants and two of the top-rated golf courses in Arizona. Stay through June 30 to receive a $50 food and beverage credit valid at the pool bar and grill, Ahnala Restaurant or in-room dining. The package also includes $5 and $10 casino slot play vouchers.

— The “Tequila and Tanlines” package at FireSky Resort Spa includes a complimentary pitcher of margaritas from Taggia Bar, available through Sept. 6 with rates starting at $109 per night.

Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale at Troon North has complimentary cabanas and nighttime entertainment with “Dive-In” movies every Saturday night throughout the summer. While you relax and recharge, the kids will relish in the “Kids for All Seasons” program open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. with scheduled activities and complimentary access to board games, ping pong and more. Rates begin at $179 per night, valid June 1 through Aug. 31.

Fairmont Scottsdale Princess’ “Sip, Savor and Splash” package equips guests with a $50 resort credit perfect for sampling any of 240 tequilas at La Hacienda or retreating to Well Being Spa. Poolside is the place to be with the spinning water adventure, SplashRider X-treme, and 200-foot waterslides. Guests are also able to upgrade to a casita Signature Jr. Suite with the “Upgrade Your Summer” package. Rates for both packages start at $169 per night through Sept. 6.

— Boulders Resort Spa is offering the “Two by Fore” package, which includes private casita accommodations, one round of golf per paying adult with same-day replay, a 20 percent spa discount at the spa and complimentary access to spa facilities and unlimited fitness classes.

Rates start at $189 per night through Sept. 10, with a two-night minimum stay.

— The JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort Spa offers a credit. Stay through Dec. 31 and receive casita guest room accommodations and a $100 resort credit per night, which can be put toward golf at 36 holes of championship golf at Camelback Golf Club. The “$100 Resort Credit” package rate starts at $229 per night with promo code: P50.

— The Royal Palms Resort Spa has the “Luxe Lounging” package, offered May 26 through Sept. 30. Enjoy two refreshing welcome cocktails and a room upgrade upon arrival before indulging in a meal at T. Cooks with a $25 dining credit. And restore yourself at the Alvadora Spa with a massage or body therapy compliments of two $40 spa credits. Rates start at $149 per night with promo code: PLL.

The Hermosa Inn’s “Artist for a Day” summer package, through Sept. 7, includes a 90-minute private painting lesson with on-property artists, two drink tickets to Last Drop at the Hermosa Inn and accommodations in a casita. Rates start at $355 per night.

WalletHub stay-cation rankings

Best Cities for stay-cations

1. Orlando

2. Atlanta

3. Cincinnati

4. Scottsdale

5. Boise City, Idaho

6. St. Louis, Mo.

7. Pittsburgh

8. Tampa

9. Portland, Ore.

10. Las Vegas

Worst Cities for stay-cations

91. Loredo, Texas

92. Newark, N.J.

93. North Las Vegas, Nev.

94. Hialeah, Fla.

95. San Bernardino, Calif.

96. Jersey City, N.J.

97. Fremont, Calif.

98. Anaheim, Calif.

99. Santa Ana, Calif.

100. Chula Vista, Calif.

Article source: http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/local/scottsdale/2015/05/28/scottsdale-among-top-cities-stay-cations/28085069/