An oasis in the desert, Phoenix, Arizona, is the fifth-largest city in the United States. Established in 1868 when its population was 250, the Greater Phoenix area now occupies more than 2,000 square miles and boasts a population of more than 3.8 million. In addition to cultural institutions such as the Heard Museum and the Phoenix Art Museum, four major league sports teams and more than 200 golf courses, Greater Phoenix is home to a variety of resort hotels that have been highly rated by the Forbes Travel Guide.
Three-Star Resort Hotels
There are three resort hotels in Phoenix that have received a three-star rating. The Arizona Biltmore is a luxury resort located on 38 acres of manicured grounds. Built in 1929 under the auspices of renowned architect Frank Lloyd Wright, the hotel boasts 740 guest rooms, 78 private villas, eight swimming pools, seven tennis courts, five restaurants and a full-service salon and spa. The JW Marriot Desert Ridge Resort & Spa is a sprawling collection of 950 guest rooms and 81 suites. In addition to a variety of dining options, serving everything from AAA Four Diamond Award-winning Tuscan cuisine to the creations of celebrity chef Roy Yamaguchi, guests also may delight in a game of golf on the establishment’s Zagat-rated course. Alternatively, the Royal Palms Resort and Spa has 118 rooms, villas and casitas, each outfitted with European antiques and artifacts. A AAA Four Diamond Award-winning establishment every year since 1999, this hotel boasts a highly rated restaurant manned by award-winning Chef Lee Hillson.
Resort Hotels for Romantic Getaways
In its list of best hotels for romantic getaways, Forbes Travel Guide suggested a stay at the lavishly appointed Royal Palms Resort and Spa. The Sheraton Wild Horse Pass Resort and Spa also made the cut. This luxury hotel was designed as an authentic representation of the culture and heritage of the Gila River Indian community. In addition to its themed décor, this establishment is home to two 18-hole golf courses, an equestrian center that offers riding lessons, and a 17,500-square-foot spa. In addition, the Sheraton Wild Horse Pass Resort and Spa boasts an abundance of indoor and outdoor event space, including a 17,376-square-foot ballroom.
Resort Hotels for Families
Forbes Travel Guide also compiled a list of the best hotels for traveling families, and the historic Arizona Biltmore was first. Second was the Pointe Hilton Tapatio Cliffs, an all-suite golf resort that boasts a water park consisting of acres of pools, lounges and terraced waterfalls. Seasonally, the hotel offers the Kids Korral, a collection of aquatic activities geared toward children ages 5 to 12. The Arizona Grand Resort is a golf resort hotel that is also home to the Oasis Water Park. Voted one of the country’s top 10 water parks by the Travel Channel, it offers three waterslides, a wave pool, river tubing and a 25-person hot tub. Oasis Water Park is open only to guests of the resort.
Visitors to Phoenix also might choose to stay at the Legacy Golf Resort. Awarded two stars by the Forbes Travel Guide, this hotel’s convenient location near the Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport makes it a winning choice. Consisting of 328 suites housed in 12 separate, Spanish mission-style buildings, its par 71 championship golf course was designed by Gary Panks.
- arizona desert image by John Keith from Fotolia.com