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1st time. What to do on evenings and where to stay?

Chico, CA
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722 posts
51 reviews
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1st time. What to do on evenings and where to stay?

I will be in Phoenix for a conference 4/23-4/27 and fly back to California on afternoon 4/28. It is my first visit in Phoenix and I want to see as much as possible in the limited hours left after conference. Conference hours 7am-1pm. I am 40 years old female, love art, architecture, theater, concerts and to see new or unusual things/places. I am not super interested in sports, night clubs or hiking etc (have back problem). Guided bus city tour would be great too.

Questions:

1. What would you recommend to see on 5 afternoons after 1pm and 1 morning (4/28) before 1pm? I have plans for 3 afternoons so far: Desert Botanical Garden, Heard Museum and Phoenix Art Museum. What else?

2. I will not have a car, so if here is a way of public transportation to those places it would be a big plus. If not, how much approximately might it cost to get to those places by cab from JW Marriott Phoenix Desert Ridge Resort (5350 E. Marriott Dr) where the conference going to be?

3. Are there any good but not too expensive hotels in a walking distance or $10 or less cab ride to/from the listed above resort? Price there $260 per night plus tax. It might be preferable to pay $100-150 or less and take a cab to the conference center.

4. Is the area around that resort safe for coming back at late evening?

5. Shopping not far from that resort?

Thank you very much!

Edited: 3:24 am, March 20, 2014
Chico, CA
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722 posts
51 reviews
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1. Re: 1st time. What to do on evenings and where to stay?

I am considering vising a Music Instrument Museum too. Where else to go? Already been to Grand Canyon in the past (from the trip to Vegas). Any city tours of Phoenix or Scottsdale? Any transportation other than driving from Phoenix to Scottsdale Old Town?

Scottsdale, Arizona
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for Phoenix, Scottsdale
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2. Re: 1st time. What to do on evenings and where to stay?

The Marriott Desert Ridge is fairly far north and most sights are not within easy walking distance. The Musical Instrument Museum is the closest and might be a mile or so away. The other sights you mention are quite a distance. The Desert Ridge shopping mall is also.in that area. Public transit in the Phoenix area is abysmal in general and might be non-existent in vicinity of Desert Ridge. Getting cab service might be extremely difficult. The tour bus company that did many area tours went out of business a couple of years ago. Not sure what is available these days.

You might want to consider renting a car to get around. Desert Ridge is handy to both the 101 and 51 freeways, which can get you to sights such as Scottsdale Old Town, Desert Botanical Garden and Heard Museum fairly easily. The Phoenix area is built for cars.

Tempe, AZ
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3. Re: 1st time. What to do on evenings and where to stay?

Renting a car will be the easiest, most convenient, and most cost effective way to see all of the things that you want.

Phoenix, Arizona
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4. Re: 1st time. What to do on evenings and where to stay?

I agree about renting a car. Especially with your limited time, you would waste a lot of it waiting for buses; otherwise you'd be spending more in cab far than you would for a rental. My advice would be to get a cheaper hotel, and then rent a car and drive to your conference. The closest hotel is the Holiday Inn Express on Irma Lane, just west of the Desert Ridge shopping center. There's also a Residence Inn near the Mayo hospital, and a number of others not too far away along Scottsdale Rd; the Marriott Springhill Suites, a Hampton Inn, etc. Look on Priceline's map so you can see where the hotels are located.

Chico, CA
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5. Re: 1st time. What to do on evenings and where to stay?

Thank you very much to all of you for all the replies. I am considering rentiang a car but afraid to drive in a big city. I live in a small town with little traffic and didn't drive major highways for several years (had an accident on highway and afraid since then). So trying to see if there is any way to do it without car, to see how many attractions I will need to get to. So far have 3 places to visit, need 3 more :). Any other places you would suggest as a must see for me? How busy highways are at Phoenix? Hummingbird3721, thanks a lot of the info on hotels, it is very helpful. I called to JW Marriott, and they are sold out so definetely will need other hotel and drive or take a cab to the conference, will call to those you listed.

Chico, CA
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6. Re: 1st time. What to do on evenings and where to stay?

any other places to see?

Scottsdale, Arizona
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7. Re: 1st time. What to do on evenings and where to stay?

Apple, you have to understand that you can fit all of Chico into one tiny corner of Phoenix. You really need a car. The area you are staying is perhaps one of the worst for public transit and cabs.

I think you should add the Phoenix Public Library to your visit to the Heard Museum and the Phoenix Art Museum. It was featured in Time Magazine as an outstanding architectural statement. While there, ask someone about the special reason for the fountain. Also, you will want to see Frank Lloyd Wright's Gammage Auditorium on the campus of Arizona State University, which has several other significant buildings.

Edited: 2:59 am, March 21, 2014
Chico, CA
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722 posts
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8. Re: 1st time. What to do on evenings and where to stay?

thank you

9. Re: 1st time. What to do on evenings and where to stay?

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