Hotspots in Phoenix, AZ
If your kids love fire trucks, they're sure to enjoy the world’s largest firefighting museum, the Hall of Flame. Check out the historic fire trucks, including some trucks the kids are allowed to climb on, and other memorabilia. There are almost an acre of fully restored pieces, including some dating back to 1725. Check out the history of the American fightfighters, as well as exhibits from around the world, including England, France, Austria and Germany. Open Monday through Saturday, 9am – 5pm and Sundays from noon to 4pm.
It’s been said that you’re not a true Phoenician until you hike Camelback Mountain. So what better way for you to act like a local on your vacation? To Phoenix residents, Camelback is like the Eiffel Tower to Parisians or Statue of Liberty to New Yorkers. It’s the beach to Los Angeles. You get it yet? It’s an iconic landmark that sits (almost) smack in the middle of the Valley and offers some of the most fantastic views around. It’s also shaped like a resting camel, hence the name. Camelback Mountain offers challenging hiking and biking trails.
Pinnacle Peak Park features a great family-friendly hike, with the 1.75 mile trail (one way) showcasing spectacular views of the valley. This moderately-ranked hike goes up 1,300 feet, allowing your kids to take in the famous Arizona Saguaros cactus, creosote plants, as well as wildlife, including Gila Monsters, lizards, Javelina and Bobcats. The best months for hiking in Arizona are October through May. Restrooms, drinking fountains and picnic tables are available on-site. Dogs and bikes are not permitted.
The Westin Kierland Resort & Spa recently rescued a Scottish Terrier, Scotty, who now serves as the new ambassador for the resort’s Heavenly Pet Program – a new element to their long-standing Family FUN Program. Scotty welcomes his four-legged buddies into the Kierland Companion’s Club, a special club for pets and their owners. Upon arrival, pets and their owners get a complimentary welcome kit, with an assortment of amenities to help them during their stay. Pets also have the luxury to sleep on a Heavenly Dog Bed, a unique bed just for man’s best friend. The resort’s concierge team helps arrange sitting services, and there also are pet-friendly rooms with close access to an onsite dog park.
A state-of-the-art, off-leash dog park in Gilbert, Cosmo Dog Park offers a ton-of-fun for dogs with 4 acres of fenced play areas, lighting for night use, pet drinking fountains and wash stations, and trash receptacles for easy cleaning. There’s also a separate area for smaller or more timid dogs, which is especially convenient for first-time visitors. But the main attraction at Cosmo Dog Park is the man-made lake that is a favorite for water-loving breeds.
One of the main attractions of del Piero is its location at the base of the San Tan Mountains in Queen Creek, one of the few remaining farm communities in Greater Phoenix. The Tuscan-inspired eatery features only local and organic products, and many of its menu items were created from owner Perry Rea’s personal cravings. Even salads are a tasty adventure at del Piero with items like the Citrus Caprese and the Spring Mix with fruity balsamic dressing. We love del Piero because it adheres to the “sharing is caring” philosophy – just visit the website for recipes on all menu items.
One of the best things about Arizona cuisine has got to be the plethora of Mexican restaurants available in the Valley. Get the full southwest experience at Aunt Chilada’s. The perfect place for outdoor dining, surrounded by the beautiful mountains of the Squaw Peak area, you can listen to live music and enjoy a margarita with plenty of room for your canine companion to join you. Located right near Dreamy Draw Park and within miles of hiking trails conveniently located off the 101, Aunt Chilada’s is a great place to wrap up the day or to start your Sunday morning. Enjoy the amazing authentic brunch options and help yourself to the chocolate fountain and a complimentary mimosa.
Drybar at Scottsdale Quarter is a “blow dry bar” concept where you can’t go for a haircut, but you can definitely indulge in a Hollywood starlet-worthy wash and style. The best part is that it only costs $35! Choose from seven glam hairstyles – all named after cocktails – like the “Cosmopolitan” curls, stick-straight “Manhattan” and cutesy “Shirley Temple,” for little ones 10 and under. And Drybar is just as much about the entertainment as the beautification. Sip on yummy drinks or take in a fun chick flick while the stylist does their thing. It’s perfect for a girl’s night out or any other special celebration!
Dancing sexy certainly makes exercising a lot more fun, but a public class at a co-ed gym can feel like all eyes are on you. That's where Express MiE Dance Fitness and Beauty Studio comes in by holding their classes at their women-only fitness center. Have fun with friends while learning to dance Zumba, Bollywood, yoga booty ballet, adult tap, belly dancing, salsa and burlesque. If that's not risque enough for you, Express MiE even offers several sensual pole dancing classes. Aside from getting your body fit, the studio also offers head-to-toe makeovers via their beauty lessons and one-on-one's with image consultants. While the gym is women-only, don't think that men are left completely out in the cold -- Express MiE offers several dance classes and private lessons for couples.
As temperatures rise across Arizona, spa-goers can ditch their winter coats and slip in to plush spa robes with the return of Summer Spaaah Series. Bridging the divide between luxury and affordability, Arizona Spa Girls will once again unite luxury spa experiences with value through their annual summer events.
Now in its seventh consecutive year, the popular event series features seven resort spa events. A percentage of each ticket and a portion of sponsorships go directly to Fresh Start Women’s Foundation, a Phoenix-based charity that assists Valley women in transition. Click here to see the amazing spas the series includes this year.