Museum of the West
3830 N. Marshall Way, Scottsdale
The wildness, grandeur, and folklore of the American West come alive at this museum in Old Town in dramatic temporary exhibits as well as through the permanent collection. Especially worth checking out: the massive display of Hopi ceramics; saddles, spurs, and boots from old mining towns (including artifacts from a saloon once co-owned by Wyatt Earp); and striking bronze sculptures of historical figures by the award-winning sculptor John Coleman. It's all impressive, but the exquisite abstract paintings of western America by Maynard Dixon, on view through August 2020, are especially worth seeing. We also loved the yearlong exhibit of works by female artists at the nearby Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art.
6316 N. Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale
The answer to "What do I order?" at Fat Ox is staring at you from the middle of the menu: twenty-five layer lasagna. Bolognese, thin house-made lasagna noodles, San Marzano tomatoes, whipped ricotta, and charred rapini make up the many layers, and they’re all made fresh every morning. While you're waiting for it, dig into a Caesar salad for two (they prepare it tableside) and the mozzarella with cara cara oranges. The other standout is a brick-grilled organic chicken that comes with creamy polenta and dripping with jus.
3815 N. Brown Ave., Scottsdale
You'll be dreaming about this guacamole—handmade, right at your table—and the margaritas, which rival any you'll get in Baja. There’s a pozole that will melt your heart and tacos (mahi mahi, roasted butternut squash, or mole duck) on fresh, hand-pressed corn tortillas. It's all incredible, but get the roasted pork shoulder. Big enough for two, it's slow-cooked for twelve hours and comes out sticky and sweet, served with a habanero pineapple glaze.
Andaz Scottsdale Resort and Bungalows
6114 N. Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale
This property is so serene, you can almost hear the birds moving through the air. The hotel is made up of 185 private bungalows and suites that dot the walking paths weaving through the grounds. Each is outfitted with a private patio, huge bathrooms, mid-century modern furniture, and quirky sculptures, paintings, and ceramics by local Scottsdale artists from the nearby Cattle Track Arts Compound. There's lots to do right on the property: Have blue corn pancakes delivered to your bungalow and eat them on the patio overlooking Camelback Mountain. Head to a yoga class at the fitness center before getting a Himalayan salt stone massage at the spa. Sip margaritas by the pool, or take a nap on one of the property's several hammocks. At night, head to Weft & Warp, the on-site restaurant that serves, among other delicious things, a decadent, creamy scallop risotto and incredible desserts. Stay for the live music before melting into your oversize bed.
The Spa at Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale at Troon North
10600 E. Crescent Moon Dr., Scottsdale
Invigorating Hungarian facial massage (think pinching and piano-playing over skin to get the blood flowing to conjure a nice flush), copper peptide treatments, layers of antioxidant collagen masks, and firming microcurrent therapies are just some of the skin-revivifying treatments on the menu. We especially love the Revital-Eyes, in which botanical-infused pads are applied to the under-eyes to support collagen and ease puffiness before the area is targeted with a NuFace device to tighten and lift via gentle electric current.
Montelucia Resort & Spa
4949 E. Lincoln Dr., Camelback
There’s definitely a Moorish paradise thing happening throughout this Scottsdale resort. Rooms are clustered in sections so it feels like walking through little villages with a Kabash pool where people lounge under the cabanas from day into night. The heart of the resort is the massive Moroccan-style Joya spa (the building is an architectural feat in its own right) their signature being the Hammam Experience—start with an herbal black soap scrub, followed by a steam, whirlpool, sauna, cold deluge and a final rest in the ‘warming room.’ They also offer acupuncture, cupping, and IV therapy, making this just a bit different than your traditional hotel spa. The resort is set at the foot of the Camelback Mountain, which makes for a great morning hike through the desert landscape.
15044 N. Scottsdale Rd., #150, Scottsdale
The only thing better than Cos Bar's famously vast offering of makeup, fragrance, bath, and beauty products (including the newly-launched goop organic skincare line) is the exceptional customer service provided by the knowledgeable, genuinely nice beauty consultants, which is exactly how founder Lily Garfield envisioned it back in 1976 when she opened the original Aspen outpost. There are Cos Bars all over the country, including New York, La Jolla, and Montecito.