Travel Counsel in Arizona
Travel Counsel is a group of 12 progressive Travel Management companies that serve mid-market business customers and leisure clientele. We get together 3 times per year and share knowledge and best practices to enable us to stay at the forefront of emerging opportunities to better serve our clients and keep our businesses as relevant as possible. After our 1 1/2 day meeting I planned to stay an additional day to personally experience what Scottsdale has to offer. The new word that describes this type of trip is ‘Bleisure’ , which means combining a business trip with a personal vacation add on.
More and more progressive companies are acknowledging this type of travel and incorporating some guidelines into their travel policy. When incorporated effectively this is a great way to show your employees that you value their personal wellbeing which ultimately translates into a more happy and productive work force. At TTI Travel we can assist in updating your company’s travel policy to create a win-win scenario.
Leisure add on….
An ideal place to truly enjoy the wonderful things there are to do in Scottsdale is by staying at The Phoenician Resort and in particular the Canyon Suites which is ultimately a boutique resort within the resort itself. Staying at the Canyon allows you a more private and intimate setting while being a 4 minute stroll to the hub of the main resort.
After my meeting which ended at 11 am, and bidding my colleagues safe travels home, I went to the golf practice area to limber up for my 12:50 pm tee off time. The golf course at The Phoenician is a wonderful golf experience. It recently reopened after converting the 27 holes into 18 holes and it is in superb condition. The course is well suited for an intermediate challenge while being quite invigorating. I say invigorating because the ambience puts you is a very relaxed mode and I played one of my best rounds all season. Yes I did get some great relief from the golf Gods when I shanked my final approach shot on 18, which skipped along the pond 3 times before crashing into the bank in front of the green, causing my golf ball to ricochet to 10 feet from the hole. After I was yelping with joy I went on to miss my par putt which I took in stride given how lucky I was!
Later that evening I was greeted by my gracious host, Joanna Paulsel, Account Director- Leisure, and treated to a superb food experience at J&G Steakhouse. The menu choices are mouthwatering and the food quality and service are divine. The restaurant lends itself to great conversation and it was enlightening to get Joanna’s perspective of life in Scottsdale and the guest experience at The Phoenician given she was born in Scottsdale and has been working at the resort for the past 26 years, almost her entire working career, which is a true testament of how wonderful The Phoenician is as an employer and fulfiller of exceptional guest experiences.
The next day was a truly unique and personally rewarding experience and endeavor. Although I have been to Scottsdale several times I never thought to climb Camelback Mountain which is a 15 minute walk from The Phoenician and something the fit minded locals love to take on. If you love a challenge and being rewarded by the best vistas in the entire region you’re in for a real treat. It took me a full 3 hours along the Cholla Trailhead to climb up the mountain and back. Experienced climbers can do it well under 2 hours. If you’re lucky like I was, you might get to see Camel Jack, a local who climbs the mountain multiple times in the same day, whisk bye you. The top 1/3 rd of the mountain is rated double blue diamond (similar to a double black diamond ski run rating) which has you using all fours at various times. If you find that section a bit overwhelming, you can always circle back and still feel very good about getting your heart rate up and taking in wonderful panoramic views of Paradise Valley and beyond. The folks at the Phoenician provide their guest with a light back pack filled with all the necessities (i.e. water bottle, sunscreen, nutrition snack and anything else you might need to make your hike enjoyable and comfortable). If you wish The Phoenician call also arrange a private guide.
Of course, if heights are not your thing, strolling The Phoenician walking pathways and admiring all the various types of cactus is a very nice way to step out and appreciate the uniqueness of being in a dessert like environment.
Now that you’ve given your body a healthy awakening it’s time to treat yourself to a sumptuous massage and/or Jacuzzi (or steam which the locals prefer) in the newly constructed state-of-the-art Spa & Fitness facility . It’s absolutely serene and calming with so many choices and offerings you may just want to call your TTI travel advisor to add another day to your unforgettable Bleisure experience.
I could keep telling you more about my amazing experience but I think it’s best you make the time to experience it first-hand yourself or better still with the company of your family or friends.