How to Spend 72 Retro Hours in Scottsdale, Arizona


Eat, Drink and Play Your Way Through This Desert City

If burnout has been hitting you hard, an escape to the desert might be just what the doctor ordered. It’s only natural to crave a little rest and relaxation now and then, and with its retro charm and vintage vibes, Scottsdale is the perfect place to reminisce about simpler times. Read on to discover our Rx for three days in the hipster hotspot of the sunny Southwest.

Stay: Check in at theHotel Valley Ho

Day 1: 3 p.m.

Credit: Hotel Valley Ho

To experience the next best thing to actual time travel, dive headfirst back into the swinging ‘60s with a relaxing stay at the Hotel Valley Ho. With its mid-mod architecture and major Rat Pack vibes, you can enjoy vast mountain views from your sleek guest suite and tap your toes to a hip DJ set by the pool every weekend (from the privacy of your own cabana). The property is located in Old Town Scottsdale—an area with great walkability, so you can explore all the surrounding town has to offer. And best of all, when you book a two-night getaway, you’ll get the third night free.

5 p.m. : Play – Cham Pang Lanes

Credit: Châm Pang Lanes / Flagship Restaurant Group

Have a bet to settle? Look no further than Cham Pang Lanes for all of your modern vintage entertainment needs. Enjoy an evening of bowling and bubbly, and challenge your pals (or paramour) to a friendly game of pool or pinball. With a colorful, eclectic aesthetic (we’re talking tropical palm cushions and tiger-print wallpaper), be sure to snap a pic or two of the insanely Instagrammable backdrop.

7 p.m : Drink- Platform 18

One of North America’s 50 best cocktail bars, this bar is simply not to be missed. With 36 seats in a Presidential Pullman-inspired train car, take a trip back in time with a Lipstick & Earrings cocktail in hand. This speakeasy is glamorous, chic, and it’s a total glimpse into a different era. Make a reservation and you’ll embark on a 90-minute adventurous journey through the 1930s. Over 40 cocktails are offered, so sit back and enjoy your time with a few different creations!

9:30 p.m : Milkshakes at ZuZu, Back at Hotel Valley Ho

Credit: Hotel Valley Ho

Before tucking in for the night, stop by ZuZu for a late-night milkshake. Putting a sweet spin on the traditional nightcap, these crowd pleasing ice cream bevs are the perfect way to cap off an eventful day, featuring over-the-top garnishes and seasonal flavors. 

Day 2 :11 a.m.
Brunch: Palma

Credit: Palma / Flagship Restaurant Group
Credit: Palma / Flagship Restaurant Group

Wake up late and start the day with some sustenance at Palma—the tropical paradise-meets-desert oasis of downtown Phoenix. Putting a unique twist on brunch classics (your go-to omelettes and avocado toasts) with unexpected flavors like kimchi pimento cheese, kewpie and cilantro-jalapeño salad, you can also sample Matcha-Stuffed French Toast and Beijing Pork Hash over bloodies or mimosas. And who says you can’t add a little vodka to your morning espresso? Live your life. 

2 p.m.

Play: TopGolf

Credit: TopGolf
Credit: TopGolf

Hit the links and squeeze in a swing sesh at TopGolf in Scottsdale. Reserve a private bay for up to six of your nearest and dearest and practice your long game in a cool, climate-controlled environment—in other words, without lugging your clubs around the green. Slug back a brewski and munch on snacks like farmhouse flatbreads, cheesy macaroni bites or a plate of wings to keep your energy up before taking a victory lap. 

4 p.m.

Relax: Hotel Valley Ho Spa

Credit: Hotel Valley Ho

Make your way to the Hotel Valley Ho’s VH Spa to wind down and peruse the Jetsetter menu inspired by exotic destinations around the world. Enjoy a Hawaiian homage with a traditional Lomi Lomi massage, get the Amsterdam experience with a CBD Soother or indulge in a Reykjavík Icelandic Moonflower treatment—combining an invigorating full-body scrub with a custom massage that’s designed to stimulate blood flow and lymph movement for a rejuvenating refresh.

7 p.m.

Dine: Cibo

Credit: Cibo Pizzeria

Remain in your state of bliss and keep the zen flowing with a slice of pie from Cibo Pizzeria. Nestled in a reimagined bungalow—originally designed in 1913—this sleek spot brings artisanal pizzas and homemade pasta to the people of Phoenix. Cozy up by the fireplace and please your palate with a creamy spoonful of tiramisu or Coppa Mascarpone for the ultimate sweet treat.

Day 3 10 a.m.
Do: Hike Camelback Mountain

Credit: Andres Alvarado
Credit: midiman

Strap on your hiking boots and explore the rugged beauty of Camelback Mountain. With an elevation level just shy of 3,000 feet, this 2.5-hour moderate trek is the perfect way to experience Arizona from new heights. Give your wallet a break by locating Echo Canyon Trailhead, which will be your starting point for discovering epic views!

2 p.m.
Play: Snakes and Lattes

Credit: Snakes & Lattes
Credit: Snakes & Lattes

Get your game face on at Snakes and Lattes—a boutique board game bar in downtown Tempe. With more than 3,000 vintage games (and some contemporary classics) to choose from, this happening hot spot guarantees you’ll never be “bored.” Like the sommeliers of gaming, experts are on hand to pair you with your perfect play. Order up some lunch or enjoy an array of refreshments, such as nachos and pretzel sticks, to keep your stamina going all the way to the final round.

4 p.m.
Dine: Shady Park

While in town, head over to Happy Hour at Shady Park—Tempe’s spot for satisfying sushi and whimsical fare. (Hot tip: try not to chuckle while ordering the You Used to Call Me on My Shell Phone roll or the Shiso Horny). Chow down on poke bowls and specialty rolls with a chilled glass of sake to cool down.

6 p.m.
Watch: Pickleball at The Orchard

Credit: Joan Azeka on Unsplash

Pickleball is obviously all the rage right now. End your night watching some highly talented pickleballers play a few rounds at The Orchard. Gather round and watch the competition heat up while sipping on a glass of beer or wine from the bar before heading back and tucking in for the night.

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