Hotel at a Glance: Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites Scottsdale – Old Town
Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites Scottsdale – Old Town blends right in with its Sonoran Desert surroundings: decorative desert brush dots the property, and the hotel's ochre-hued façade resembles a sandstone cliff at sunset. Don't be fooled by the secluded setting, though. The luxury hotel is minutes from civilization, including downtown Scottsdale and the Desert Botanical Gardens' 20,000 types of desert flora.
- Guest suites feature satellite TV, high-speed Internet, and access to a complimentary cocktail hour.
- Outdoor pool and hot tub shaded by towering palm trees
- Signature cinnamon rolls are among the complimentary treats at Express Start Breakfast Bar, as are fresh fruit, eggs, and eye-opening Arabica coffee.
- Downtown Scottsdale is less than 2 miles away and features Old West–style saloons and shops that sell handcrafted Native American jewelry and knickknacks.
- Free shuttle service within a 3-mile radius of the hotel
Scottsdale, Arizona: Stucco Mansions amid Rocky Desert Landscape
Located just northeast of Phoenix in the Sonoran Desert, Scottsdale once served as ranch land where farmers grew oranges and lemons and cowboys kicked up dust in the fierce, dry heat. That era earned Scottsdale the nickname of “The West's Most Western Town.” Today, it is an affluent city landscaped with lush green grass and lined with stucco mansions. For a glimpse of the city's Old West roots, head to Old Town Scottsdale, where wooden boardwalks and hitching posts sit in front of a retro ice-cream parlor and rustic specialty shops.
Upon arriving in Scottsdale, you know you're in the desert—cacti and tumbleweeds dot the landscape, and dry shrubs and gnarled trees cover the McDowell Mountains in the distance. To get a closer look at southwestern flora, head to the Desert Botanical Garden. There, themed trails wind past huge cacti and other moisture-hoarding succulents, best seen in the cooler early morning or twilight hours.