Are you ready for some football? As two teams compete in Super Bowl LVII in Glendale, Arizona, plenty of tag-along family members will be like “Who Dat?” While pigskin fans hoot and holler on Sunday, February 12, the rest of the family may prefer spa services, thrilling water slides, decadent food, pickleball and golf. Here are luxurious nearby resorts where fun for the whole fam is the play of the day!
Surrounded by the iconic Camelback Mountain, Scottsdale/Paradise Valley is where you’ll find some of the most opulent resorts in Arizona (we’ll tell you about some below). It’s located about ten miles northeast of Phoenix and twenty miles southeast of Glendale.
Hotel Valley Ho – Built in 1956, this hotel has classically cool roots and chic old Hollywood charm. Stop by the eclectic ZuZu at Hotel Valley Ho for a football-themed “Show Stopper” Shake, which comes with an over-the-top indulgent burger on the side. This is an order that screams “New Year’s Resolution is over!” It’s a vanilla-cola milkshake on a bed of chocolate cake, topped with sprinkles, meringue goal posts, candy cacti, and a chocolate football with M&M’s hidden inside. What’s more, Executive Chef Russell LaCasce is serving up fuel for the weekend with a 57-ounce Quarterback Tomahawk Steak Plate that serves four adults.
Mountain Shadows Resort Scottsdale (Paradise Valley) – This is the closest luxury resort to Camelback Mountain- so close, in fact, that the mountain casts a shadow over the lawn of this gorgeous property, rebuilt in 2017. As a travel writer, I visit a lot of restaurants. The restaurant at Mountain Shadows, Hearth ‘61, is way up there on my list of best food and service– it may be my very favorite. While in town for the big game, visit Hearth ’61 for a Touchdown Board. After filling your belly with yummy charcuterie, enjoy other amenities on site, like two 75-foot pools, wellness classes, or tee time at the resort’s short golf course.
JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort & Spa – Set on 125 acres of Sonoran Desert terrain, JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort & Spa is an award-winning resort. From your room or Rita’s outdoor dining, you’ll see perfectly pristine landscaping in Paradise Valley and a close-up view of Mummy Mountain. You can even lace up your walking shoes and enjoy private access to the trailhead. Pre or post game, tee up for 36 holes of championship golf at Camelback Golf Club, or a relaxing massage at the 32,000-square-foot Spa at Camelback Inn.
Great Wolf Lodge Arizona – Like other families traveling together, my entourage includes two littles: a five-year-old and a nine-year-old. The kids are about as interested in the big game as they are in theoretically learning about physics, which is not at all. But experientially learning about traveling down a water slide at high velocity to a splashy finish? That interests them quite a bit! Great Wolf Lodge offers families an indoor waterpark with thrill-seeking water rides, a multitude of dining options, and the fan-favorite Adventure Park, which includes a ropes course, miniature golf, and more.
The largest city in Arizona and closest accessible hotels and resorts to the Big Game. Phoenix is a quick 9-miles southeast of Glendale.
JW Marriott Phoenix Desert Ridge Resort & Spa – This is Phoenix’s largest luxury resort. JW Marriott Phoenix Desert Ridge Resort & Spa, recently debuted an $80 million resort transformation that features beautifully redesigned guest rooms and the new signature dining destination Tía Carmen, which serves Southwestern fare by “Top Chef” alum and executive chef Angelo Sosa. During the Big Game weekend, swing by the resort to enjoy special game day snacks, a round of championship golf, or a game or two of pickleball at one of the resort’s 17 world-class pickleball courts.
Sheraton Phoenix Downtown – This is Phoenix’s largest hotel. Sheraton Phoenix Downtown offers guests a contemporary destination featuring thoughtful amenities, modern lodging and convenient dining experiences at the hotel’s part coffee shop, part grab-and-go market. Southwestern signature dining can be enjoyed at on-site restaurant, Carcara.
Cover Photo Courtesy Mountain Shadows Resort Scottsdale (Paradise Valley)
Brook Benten, M.Ed. is a wellness travel writer, based out of Austin, TX with a deep affinity for Scottsdale, AZ… and “meh” feelings towards football. Instagram @BrookBenten