A girlfriend getaway is always one of the best trips you can take, but imagine taking this trip with a woman you consider one of your besties, who knows your deep dark secrets AND is someone you have never met in person.
That was the scenario for my getaway with my friend Angelica from New York who was coming to Arizona for the first time. She and I met online four years ago at the lowest point of both our lives and this was our first meeting. I wanted to show her the best of Arizona so it was time to check out some local resorts and sites.
First up is one of my favorites, the five diamond Fairmont Scottsdale. The VIP service starts the second we arrive on property when we’re whisked away to a private Fairmont Gold reception area to check-in. Fairmont Gold rooms include deluxe rooms and Master or Junior Suites. The master suite is a whopping 1500 square feet and has a conference table that seats eight. My room, a deluxe guest room is relaxing with its neutral tones and modern design. The weather is beautiful so the balcony is a nice spot where my friend and I share some girl talk that paired well with our vino. The Fairmont Gold lounge offers over 2,000 square feet to kick back over a complimentary afternoon snack time (note that alcoholic beverages aren’t included in the happy hour) or an included breakfast in the morning. I must admit I’m a sucker for lounge access be it in a resort or an airport!
One of the things I love about the Fairmont is that it is so Travel Diet friendly! The Well & Being Spa is the largest in the city and its focus on wellness, health, fitness and pampering is unsurpassed in a city known for the quality of its spas. Let’s start with the fitness. This isn’t your boring gym with the requisite yoga class. No this is your gym with aerial yoga. This high-flyin’ hour-long class is easier than it sounds and is a good workout, but more importantly, it brings out your inner child and renews your spirit. Surf’s up at the Fairmont with the Surfset class. This killer core workout challenges your abs and your balance as you try and ride the wave as your board bobbles forward and back and side to side. The beach music helps make it fun.
If outdoor activities are more your speed check out the tennis center. The Fairmont used to host both ATP and WTA tour events and there are seven courts for you to strike up a game or take a lesson. And if you’re a golfer the Fairmont is the home to the Waste Management Open, arguably the PGA’s most fun stop on its tour. And since this is The Travel Diet, we know you’ll be walking, not carting the course!
After working out your body, it’s time to relax your mind with a spa treatment at that aforementioned great spa. I opt for the Purification Ritual. The service starts with a coffee scrub. I loved the smell; I felt like my body was turning into a Starbucks espresso! While I was wrapped up letting the scrub work it’s magic, the therapist did a mini-facial. The service concluded with a full body massage.
The spa is filled with amenities so make sure to allow time to enjoy them. For me that means time at the outdoor spa pool, a soak in the locker room hot tubs and time in the steam and inhalation rooms.
Although Mexican isn’t my favorite cuisine, this is Arizona and I want to give my friend a true Grand Canyon State experience so we head to one of the few Mexican eateries in town I do like, conveniently at the Fairmont. La Hacienda has been rated the top Mexican in Arizona and what I love about it is not everything is smothered in yellow cheese. For A Travel Diet traveler this is great because you can experience authentic cuisine that is healthy. I opt for the Ceviche de Camaron, a shrimp and blood orange ceviche to start and the Wild Isles Sea Trout with quinoa (cream sauce on the side) as the main. The restaurant is known for its tequila goddess and the presentation of the snake bite tequila sampler is a sight to see (rattle snack head and tail!) But as you all know, I’m a wine girl so I stick with my poison of choice. Angelica and I do indulge in the 1921 flaming coffee drink simply because the table side preparation shouldn’t be missed.
Since a first visit to Arizona requires a trip to the Grand Canyon or Sedona, after two nights at the Fairmont, we jump in the car and head north. Look for the continuation of the journey in the next few days!