By Alyssa DeMember
BEST RELAXING RESORT POOL, BEST RESORT, AND MOST LUXE ACCOMMODATIONS: The Wigwam
Winner of three Stay + Play categories (all of the luxurious variety), The Wigwam is an adobe-and-timber-style resort with 331 casitas, four shimmering pools and two 25-ft. waterslides, three 18-hole golf courses and a number of drinking and dining options. Dwell in one of 72 palatial suites, or treat yourself like royalty with one of two exclusive Presidential casitas. The Red Door Salon & Spa offers a tranquil sanctuary, while the Wigwam Golf Club challenges guests to show off their skills amongst the lush parkland-style landscape. wigwamarizona.com. Also a 2016 winner!
BEST POOL PARTY: Hotel Valley Ho
Downtown Scottsdale hot spot Hotel Valley Ho is the place to be, and its summer-long pool party is no exception. OH Pool Bar + Cabanas offers craft cocktails, live music from local bands on Friday afternoons and eight private cabanas. Prime lounging and sun-soaking time can be had at the crystal blue OHasis Pool, which includes two water features and shady palm trees. Hang out during Session Saturdays, where DJ’s spin from 1:30 to 5:30 p.m. hotelvalleyho.com.
BEST CASINO: Wild Horse Pass Hotel & Casino
See if Lady Luck’s on your side with a game of blackjack, three-card poker or Texas Hold’em—and if not, you can always enroll yourself in some food and drink therapy at one of the swanky lounges or restaurants. With luxury suites, live shows and literally hundreds of games (956 slots, 65-plus table games and poker), there’s always something to get jazzed about. For the VIP treatment, join the Players Club, where points earned from gameplay can get you perks like event tickets, discounts and priority lines. wingilariver.com.
AFM FAVE! BEST RESORT: Fairmont Scottsdale Princess
The Fairmont Scottsdale Princess, located in North Scottsdale, is a dazzlingly sumptuous resort featuring spacious suites and casitas. Partake in a bit of retail therapy at one of the resort’s on-site shops or some serious r-n-r at Sunset Beach, complete with cooling white sand and stocked cabanas. The property also includes a 44,000-sq.-ft. spa with Sedona sandstone interiors and waterfalls, and fine dining like Bourbon Steak and La Hacienda. scottsdaleprincess.com.
BEST DOWNTOWN PHOENIX HOTEL: Sheraton Grand Phoenix
Perfect for a lavish getaway, the Sheraton Grand Phoenix is a high-class hotel with all the amenities your heart could desire. Surrounded by a bustling shopping, dining and nightlife scene, guests at this AAA Four-Diamond hotel can pamper themselves with an outdoor pool and Jacuzzi, grab a drink at the Breeze Pool Bar or dine at the hotel’s District American Kitchen & Wine Bar. sheratonphoenixdowntown.com.
AFM FAVE! BEST CASINO: Desert Diamond Casino West Valley
From big-name concerts to poker tournaments, Desert Diamond Casino West Valley in Glendale hosts plenty of can’t-miss action. Stop in for 1,089 of the hottest games, with longer playtime and better odds of winning. Plus, the Desert Diamond West Valley Food Court serves up quick bites and sit-down specials to refuel after a winning streak. ddcaz.com.
BEST LOBBY BAR: The Rim Lobby Lounge, The Westin Kierland Resort & Spa
The Westin Kierland Resort & Spa is rooted in elegance and relaxation, perfectly juxtaposed with the resort’s energetic lobby bar, The Rim Lobby Lounge. While enjoying a cocktail or a glass of vino, take in live music entertainment (as well as eye-popping views) following Bagpipes at Sunset on Friday and Saturday nights. kierlandresort.com.
BEST MOVIE THEATER: DINE IN Studio Movie Grill, studiomoviegrill.com.
BEST PET RESORT/BOARDING FACILITY: Sonoran Desert Pet Resort, sdpetresort.com.
BEST VALLEY HIKE: The Trails at Desert Mountain, facebook.com/desertmountaintrails.
BEST ADVENTURE EXPERIENCE: Float Balloon Tours, floatballoontours.com. Also a 2016 winner!
BEST MOVIE THEATER: Harkins Theatres, harkinstheatres.com. Also a 2016 winner!
BEST PLACE TO DISCOVER YOUR INNER ARTIST: Pinspiration, pinspiration.com. Also a 2016 winner!
Buy your copy of Arizona Foothills Magazine Best of Our Valley 2017 Collectors Edition issue here.