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Travel Tuesday: Scottsdale

Travel Tuesday: ScottsdaleOnce a suburb of Phoenix, Scottsdale has grown to become one of Arizona's most cosmopolitan cities. This oasis of luxury living in the lush Sonoran Desert is known for its award-winning golf courses, world-renowned art scene and enviable weather, with over 300 days of sunshine a year. Consequently, it should come as no surprise to learn that Scottsdale attracts over seven million tourists annually, and has a notably affluent population of its own.

Scottsdale boasts over 200 golf courses, many of which have hosted major tournaments including PGA and Champions Tour events. These courses cater for a broad spectrum of golfers, from amateur putters to more serious players, and often include the very latest amenities. The Westin Kierland Resort's club, for example, has climate-controlled golf and Segway transportation, as well as an exceptional coaching service.

The edge of the city is surrounded by jagged peaks, making Scottsdale a favoured destination among avid hikers. Camelback Mountain's 2680ft summit dominates the skyline and can be reached via two different trails. Both are challenging, but the Echo Canyon route is the gentler option. Pinnacle Peak has more forgiving terrain, making it popular with joggers, while Tom's Thumb is one of the best places to take in the desert's breathtaking views. Scottsdale is also home to the Indian Bend Wash Greenbelt, a tranquil urban green space with 11 miles of paths, parks and lakes.

Downtown Scottsdale is the city's cultural heart, hailed by The New York Times as 'a desert version of Miami's South Beach'. This historic quarter of the city is filled with niche boutiques, fine dining restaurants and numerous galleries. Each Thursday evening these galleries remain open to the public for ArtWalk, where people are invited to wander around the Arts District and discover the eclectic range of works by local artists. The city also hosts the annual Scottsdale International Film Festival, which includes talks from renowned filmmakers as well as Arizona film premieres.

Scottsdale has over 600 restaurants, with cuisine ranging from the typically southwestern to more experimental fusion food. Locals favour The Spotted Donkey Cantina at el Pedregal for gourmet Mexican cooking; its smoky, sautéed shrimp tacos are a definite highlight. The city has an abundance of luxury shopping destinations, including the chic Scottsdale Waterfront and the Scottsdale Fashion Square, one of the largest malls in the American southwest. Visitors are spoiled for choice here with over 200 stores to browse through, from Burberry to Gucci and Cartier. Scottsdale's established fashion scene includes Phoenix Fashion Week, a public event that promotes Arizona's design talent to the international community.

The unique combination of Scottsdale's rugged, natural landscape and high-end lifestyle distinguishes it as a truly remarkable place to live. With almost 1200 flights going to and from the city each day, it can be easily reached from all around the world. If you are interested in purchasing a holiday home or investment property in this fast-growing market, visit the Engel & Völkers website today or contact one of our expert local agents.

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