To be completely honest, Scottsdale has never been on my radar – let alone, a place I considered calling home. Yet, here I am; living in this desert city for 2 years now! Crazy how time flies.
Full disclosure, I moved to Arizona for love. And after it didn’t turn out, I had a decision to make. Do I stay in a city where I have no friends or family? Or, do I go back to Austin or LA where I have a support system? Apparently a messy breakup wasn’t hard enough, and I decided to stay in a city where I knew no one, and to struggle alone while I found my footing. Best decision I ever made. Be that as it may, it wasn’t all butterflies and rainbows; it was extremely challenging, and at times, almost too much to conquer on my own. However, this is a travel post, and not a post on my crazy first year in Arizona (more on that another time). Without further ado, here’s a few hot tips when traveling to Scottsdale, Arizona.
The Waste Management Phoenix Open at TPC Scottsdale. According to their site, “The Waste Management Phoenix Open, known as ‘The Greatest Show on Grass,’ held at TPC Scottsdale annually in early February. The WMPO is the best-attended golf tournament in the world with more than 618,000 fans attending in 2016.” Basically, it’s a few days of absolute debauchery, surrounding the usually quiet sport of golf. Some people love it, some people hate it, I’m on the fence. It’s fun to go for a bit, but after a while, one can only endure the lines and mass amount of intoxicated people in your personal space. Would I recommend going? For sure! It’s an experience all in its own. But would I cry if I didn’t get to go one year? Probably not. Regardless if your watching golf, or playing it, you can golf year-round here in Arizona – a great destination for all you golfers out there. Below: I went to upload a photo from the tournament, but all my pics included my ex. So, instead, here’s me golfing at Top Golf Scottsdale, another fun establishment to hit up when visiting.
Recently, I was told that Las Vegas now has competition for title of “the destination” for bachelor and bachelorette parties; Nashville and Scottsdale are now top contenders. Honestly, I was surprised by this… Until I went to Old Town’s Entertainment District. It’s an entire area (in the shape of a square) of bars and nightclubs that you can easily navigate to by foot. Do you want to start the night with some drinks and hiphop music? You got it! Would you like to finish the evening with some whiskey and country music? Perfect. Just walk next door and belt out your rendition to Tim McGraw’s ‘Skydiving’.
Although I enjoyed this block of craziness when I was single and trying to dance my heartbreak away, I rarely visit anymore. Maybe I’m just getting old, but if you’re into the party scene – this is definitely your spot.
For anyone that loves shopping, listen up! Scottsdale Fashion Square just underwent some renovations, including the addition of a few more upscale shops – and it’s FAB. The mall is huge, and if you’re visiting Arizona in the summer, it’s a great way to escape the heat. Additionally, Scottsdale Quarter is an awesome outdoor mall that has as many great dinning spots as it does shopping spots (they also have outdoor misters for those sweltering hot months).
There are SO many great places to eat in Scottsdale, so I thought I’d compile a quick list of my top spots where service, food and experience were all excellent. One of our ‘go-to’ restaurants for ladies night is Sumo Maya, which is a Mexican Asian fusion restaurant. This spot is trendy, and on weekends (towards the later part of the evening) turns more into a bar scene than restaurant. Conveniently, it’s located a jump, hop and a skip from Old Town’s row of bars/nightclubs; so it’s a great spot for the ‘pre-game’. Now, if you’re looking to get your hands deliciously dirty, and slip into a food coma, head on over to the Angry Crab Shack. Oh boy, is this a treat. As you sit drooling at the menu, you can’t help but love the ambiance of the place… kinda Gilligan’s Island meets Arizona desert. Maybe a photo would better describe it – check it out below!
Now, I know what you’re thinking. Seafood in the desert? That can’t be a good idea. But trust me, every time I go (more than I’d like to admit), the food is spectacular and super fresh. However, it can be pricey at times, but that’s depending on the going market price and what you decide to order. I get the same thing each time: 1 bag of Snow Crab with 4 sausages, and 3 potatoes, smothered in the Trifecta sauce. And, 1 bag of King Crab with 2 sausages, and 3 potatoes, smothered in the Pacific Rim sauce.
Scottsdale is a wonderful city, with a million things to do. I could go on and on about this place, but since I live here, and plan to explore more – I’ll continue to write suggestions and tips throughout my adventures. Happy traveling!