Course Review: The Phoenician by George Fuller
An American Classic – On Top of its Game
Sitting around the fire pit on the balcony of J&G Steakhouse on the top floor of The Phoenician with a glass of wine in your hand, looking out across the Valley of the Sun as the lights of the city begin to twinkle through the pink sky, you realize there is not a better location in town. It’s magical up here, as if you’re ensconced in a work of fine art.
Set into the southeastern flank of Camelback Mountain, this iconic, 643- room resort has recently introduced a number of signature amenities that is certain to keep it on top of your to-visit list for many years to come. Included is the family-friendly SURGE splash pad, showcasing a variety of water features and daily activities, as well as a Jacuzzi and bar for Mom and Dad. This season, the resort is also presenting its Awards of Summer offer. Just book and stay between May 30 and September 1, 2014, and be entered to win a two-night New Year’s Eve getaway at The Canyon Suites at The Phoenician – Arizona’s only Forbes Five-Star, AAA Five Diamond hotel. Summer rates start at just $159 per night.
The Desert Course and The Canyon Course
Equally exciting are the 27 holes of championship golf at The Phoenician, with each nine-hole course aptly named after its distinct profile. The Desert Course is best known for its dramatic elevation changes and awe-inspiring views. The more traditional Oasis Course is defined by its tree-lined fairways and tranquil water features; while the Canyon Course, located on the southern slope of Camelback Mountain, provides sweeping views of the Valley beyond.
Though the combination of any of the three nines just barely tops 6,000 from all the way back, it plays longer than that for men. On the other hand, it plays just perfectly for women, who traverse roughly 4,800 yards and typically report a very enjoyable round.
Not only is conditioning pristine, but the scenery is superb. Several holes on the Desert Nine boast vistas similar to those found at the fire pit at J&G Steakhouse. Holes No. 4 and 8, for example, are majestic par-3s that play from elevated tee boxes cut into the side of Camelback Mountain. Looking for a unique way to further enjoy the course? Book a private Tee Box Dining experience – complete with linens, fine china and award-winning cuisine, for your special someone at Desert No. 8.
The golf course has been called a work of art for its skillfully sculpted desert-scape, but the fairways are not the only place art is found at The Phoenician. Approximately $25 million worth of artwork is displayed throughout the resort, including sculptures, paintings, tapestries and more. Around every corner and seemingly on every wall is a piece of art that begs a few minutes of your time. A complimentary self-guided audio tour of select pieces in the collection is offered to guests and visitors, with those participants receiving free tickets to Phoenix Art Museum.
Cuisine is also an art form here. From the nouveau Italian cuisine of Il Terrazzo and the classic fare of J&G Steakhouse; to the gourmet comfort food of Relish Burger Bistro and the specialties of the Café & Ice Cream Parlor, diversity and taste go hand-in-hand. With all that to offer, The Phoenician will make an art lover of you quickly.