I knew I’d love Scottsdale before we even arrived, but I didn’t know how much! Last month, Jody and I went to Scottsdale, AZ for our babymoon as one last hurrah before baby’s arrival. We stayed at The Scott Resort and I cannot recommend it enough. The location was in close walking distance to many of the restaurants and attractions nearby, but the resort honestly had plenty to do, especially if your agenda looks like ours – relax and unwind.
THE SCOTT RESORT TOUR
Y’all, this resort was an absolute dream. Within seconds of arriving and checking into the resort, I had fallen madly in love. The Scott has a Havana vibe, with lots of palms, greenery, and rattan furniture. The main lobby and atrium are filled with benches, couches, and chairs, perfect for lounging all day long. No detail goes unnoticed – between the cruiser bikes available to ride to local attractions, the large fireplace upon walking in the main entrance, and the attentiveness of the staff, it truly felt like we were high profile guests at a luxurious resort! The lobby bar and restaurant, The Canal Club, are towards the back of the open-air space, and spill out onto the patio overlooking the pools, lagoon and gardens, with several gathering options including cabanas, couches, and two communal fire-pits.
Our room was no exception. Still carrying the Old-Havana style through the furniture, textures, and vintage artwork, I sometimes woke up and couldn’t remember if we were in the Caribbean or the Sonoran Desert. Everything was very clean and modern and included touches I wish all hotels had, including a bar cart (even though I couldn’t partake!), spa robes, and sectional corner seating. All rooms also came with a patio and seating to enjoy the landscaping surrounding the rooms, which I enjoyed on the day it rained.
Due to our early morning flight, we arrived at the resort well before check-in. The hotel staff graciously held our luggage for us so we could immediately access the hotel amenities. Prior to heading to the pool, we walked to the shopping district to stretch our legs after our five-hour flight. After window shopping and splitting a smoothie, we headed back to the resort to change into our suits and soak up the desert sun.
As we lounged by the pool all afternoon, the concierge texted us to let us know our room was ready. They offered to carry our bags to our room for us so we didn’t have to interrupt our plans. We sipped on Pina Coladas, a virgin for me, and chatted with the couples seated near us. We had unintentionally picked a seat in between a couple on their honeymoon, another expecting couple, and a couple with a toddler. It was all stages of life in a little row – ha!
Knowing that we had already been awake for close to eighteen hours, we planned for an easy and early dinner. We had read about Rehab Burger Therapy, a hole-in-the-wall burger joint in Old Town Scottsdale, not too far from our resort. We looked over the menu online, but unfortunately, when we arrived, the menus differed and there wasn’t a “non-beef” option that I could eat.
By this point, we were starting to stress, partially because we were exhausted and also because it was now Saturday night and nothing had less than an hour and a half wait. We finally stumbled upon Culinary Dropout near Fashion Square. I had heard good things about it from other bloggers, so we decided to just put our names on the waitlist and see if we could wait it out. Lucky for us, after waiting only a few minutes, we were seated at a cozy two-person table with an enthusiastic waiter who helped give us enough energy to make it through the meal. Jody and I split an order of the pretzel bites with provolone fondue and the fried chicken, but we honestly filled up on the pretzel so most of the chicken entree came back to the resort with us!
The next morning, we decided to grab breakfast at The Canal Club, which is the restaurant in the resort. To be safe, we had made reservations the night before as so few places in Scottsdale were taking walk-ins. I had planned to order the Fried Egg Sandwich but ended up going with the Avocado Toast since I knew our plan was to sit by the pool all day and I’m so glad I did. I don’t think I’ve ever enjoyed a breakfast meal as much as I did that day! It was the perfect portion and the flavor was incredible. Jody ordered the Fruit and Granola Bowl and raved about it equally.
I do have to mention, that if you are a hot coffee drinker like I am, do yourself a favor and just order the iced coffee when in Scottsdale. I love hot coffee, but even first thing in the morning, it is just too hot there for anything else. Our waitress graciously brought me an iced coffee after I made that realization! It also came with a super cute, branded paper straw that I appreciated oh, so much.
Since it was still a bit early to get settled in at the pool, we walked down toward the 5th Avenue shops in search of a sun hat for me and sunglasses for Jody. Jody easily found a pair; I didn’t have as much luck but did stumble upon some cute boutiques that I made a mental note to come back and check it out later in our visit.
After that, we spent the rest of our day around the pool. I alternated between reading my book, sipping on mocktails, and taking a dip into very cool water! Jody ordered us chicken tenders for lunch, and I have to admit, there is something about being poolside, eating fried food, and obviously pregnant that I just couldn’t get enough of!
The restaurant I was really hoping to visit while in Scottsdale was Olive & Ivy, which is a Mediterranean-inspired restaurant, not far from Culinary Dropout, where we went the night before. Like the night before, Olive & Ivy didn’t have any seating available, so I went ahead and made a reservation for the next evening. However, when I checked back before moving on to a new restaurant, they had a cancellation and we were able to be seated!
We were seated on their dreamy, cafe-light lit patio. We were immediately served focaccia bread and a pesto dipping oil, which was so good. I wanted to try a couple of dishes so we ordered a few rounds of small plates to split – butternut squash bruschetta, lamb meatballs, and a chicken pesto flatbread. The serving of bruschetta was fairly large, which made it easy to split, even though I ended eating most of it 🙂 For dessert (not that we needed it), we ordered the Lemon Soufflé Sponge, which had a hazelnut crust, and was served with burnt honey ice cream and blackberries. I wish I took a picture of it before we started eating – it was so good!
One of the activities we mentioned doing while in Scottsdale was hiking, since the Scottsdale-area has so many great hikes! We didn’t want to commit with a big hike being 28 weeks pregnant, plus I think we still have a little trauma from our “moderate” hike in Acadia National Park a few summers ago. While there are a few urban trails very close to our resort, I really wanted a chance to experience the desert and its terrain. I found the McDowell Sonoran Conservancy, which wasn’t too far outside of Scottsdale, but closer to the mountains! We took a short Uber ride to the conservancy, and were met by staff that were happy to answer our questions and recommend a trail for us. We hiked the 1.1 mile Saguaro Loop and Nature Trail, as well as the 0.5 miles Bajada Nature Trail that guided us through introductions to the plants, animals and ecosystems of the Sonoran Desert. It was the perfect trail for us to complete, although I’m not sure how great of a workout it was since I stopped to take a picture of every cactus we passed!
Once we arrived back in Scottsdale, we went to brunch at The Montauk. Because it was Monday morning, we didn’t have to wait long for a table, and got a table on their covered patio, since the temperature was a little cooler. We had originally planned to order breakfast, but was intrigued by their all day happy hour situation, so we ended up ordering more of a lunch and appetizers instead. Jody ordered the House Burger (honestly surprised he waited until Day 3!), and I ordered the Crispy Rock Shrimp and Deviled Eggs. I ordered a virgin margarita, my first one of pregnancy. While it didn’t taste like a margarita, it was still tasty!
We headed to The Scott’s sand bottomed pool for the afternoon since we hadn’t been to that pool yet. The atmosphere of this pool was a little calmer than the other one, which may be because it was a weekday so all of the the day-pass guests were no longer there. Our seats were tucked back in the lush greenery and surrounded by palm trees. Even in the cooler weather, it was still totally relaxing! Jody ordered me another mocktail – this time, some sort of fruity concoction – that I sipped on while scrolling through the thousands of pictures of cacti that I took earlier that morning.
Unfortunately, we weren’t able to stay as long as we would have liked because the temperature started to drop, the wind pick up and a rain storm rolled in. I retreated back to our room, where I sat out on our balcony, and continue to read my book I brought along on our trip.
The storm passed just in time for us to head to dinner. After some deliberation, we decided to try Farm + Craft, another restaurant that we had passed countless times on our walks through Scottsdale. This restaurant serves more organic, health-conscious meals (a bit of a change from our fried, New England styled food earlier in the day!). This was another restaurant that we should have made reservations at in advance, but luckily didn’t have long to wait.
The only thing I really wanted was the Peaches and Burrata appetizer, which was complete with apricot jam, a poppyseed vinaigrette and served with herb ciabatta. Jody wasn’t convinced when I ordered it, but quickly changed his mind after one bite! We split the Wild Mushroom flatbread for dinner, which was also delicious!
I contemplated stopping by Olive & Ivy to order the Lemon Soufflé Sponge again, but we ended up ordering something to eat in the atrium at The Scott’s Canal Club instead. We were between a few options by settled on splitting the Rum Cake with coconut ice cream – yum!
In the days leading up to our trip, the forecast wasn’t promising for our last full day in Scottsdale. Jody and I went back and forth if we should book a tour somewhere but decided to hold out hope that the forecast would change. While it wasn’t the 90-degree days we had at the beginning of our trip, we were thrilled that the sun was out, making it still warm enough for shorts as long as we were in the sun.
After our fabulous breakfast at The Canal Club earlier in the week, we decided to just order breakfast there for a calm and relaxing morning. Getting a table wasn’t a challenge because we woke up early enough to start to put us back on East Coast time, so we practically had the entire place to ourselves. Jody ordered the Creole French Toast and I ended up ordering the Avocado Toast again – y’all, I never order the same thing twice, so this just goes to show you how good it was!
After breakfast, we took advantage of the early hours and grabbed a spot next to one of the fire pits overlooking the pools. The seats were still a bit damp from the overnight rain, but that didn’t bother us. We both spent the next few hours relaxing with our noses in our books.
Early in the afternoon, we decided to stretch our legs and walk to one more restaurant I was wanting to try. When researching points of interest for our trip, Diego Pops was on just about every single list I came across. It isn’t your typical Mexican eatery, but we enjoyed the fun and modern takes on many Mexican classic dishes, as well as the super playful atmosphere. After a round of chips and salsa, Jody ordered the Breakfast burrito, and I ordered the grilled shrimp, pineapple pork, and green chili chicken tacos. Everything was good, but the grilled shrimp taco was my favorite, by far. The highlight of the meal, however, wasn’t the food, rather the cocktails! Ever since finding out I was pregnant, there has been nothing I wanted more than a margarita. Not only did Diego Pops make me the tastiest virgin margarita, but they made it using prickly pear syrup – my favorite way to have a marg!! As you can tell in these pictures, I clearly enjoyed it!
After lunch, we popped in and out of a few stores around 5th Avenue shops, including a few baby stores where I was dying over the most darling pieces. One great thing about not knowing our baby’s gender is I can’t spend too much on clothes in advance – ha! We did pick up a little cactus teether for baby to commemorate our last big trip before he or she makes their grand reveal.
We spent the latter part of the day packing and relaxing around the resort. We had an early wake-up call the following morning so we opted for early dinner reservations again at The Canal Club. We were still pretty full from lunch, so Jody and I split the Pulled Chicken Torta sandwich with an order of the Churro Donut Holes for dessert. The sandwich was very good, but we literally inhaled these donut holes. The order comes with ten, with two choices of dipping sauce, white chocolate and guava jam. I was sure we wouldn’t be able to eat all of them but literally licked the plate clean in 90 seconds!
After dinner, we too one last stroll around the resort before retreating to our room to finish packing and turn in for the night. It was hard to believe our trip was coming to an end!
We left The Scott at 3:30am to head to the airport for what had to be the first flight out of Phoenix, so it wasn’t very exciting, excluding the fact that it was Jody’s birthday 🙂
We hope to make another trip back to Scottsdale in the future. It was so sweet to spend a few days unplugged from real-life responsibilities, relax, and dream about the future with our little one.