Jun 28

Arizona Biltmore: a Waldorf Astoria treasure in Phoenix



For one traversing the unforgiving realms of Arizona it might seem to be just endless stretches of unwatered desert. The city of Phoenix rises out of the sands and its shimmering towers and oasis watered neighborhoods promise escapes of great delight. The true gem and jewel of this scene is the Arizona Biltmore, an historic property that captures the desert and makes it bloom, provides an exceptional luxury experience and one of a kind manifestations of art, architecture and service.


IMG_6219The Waldorf Astoria Biltmore property has a long history going back to 1929. It has been owned and operated by several entities, it has seen its fair share of politicians, celebrities and VIP’s and has gradually added and expanded to its premises over the decades. The hotel captures the atmosphere of a luxury resort, while being well established within the confines of the city proper. It is set in an upscale neighborhood with lavish homes, thrilling golf courses and excellent restaurant and shopping opportunities on nearby Camelback road.



IMG_6309A good tip to know about the hotel is that it has wonderful rates in the midst of summer. This is of course the hot and low season, but it keeps all of its stellar amenities and is far less crowded for wonderful prices. The entire facility is quite unique being inspired by the architecture of Frank Lloyd
Wright, it makes use of desert and Southwestern motifs as well as the use of cubes, linear and rectangular shapes in buildings and décor. As far as room go they are spread out among several wings. This gives the hotel a possible occupancy of 700+ guests.  Each facility has generous courtyards, fountains, gardens and the many pools make a short walk between the well cooled rooms and some outdoor refreshment.


Overall the staff were helpful. They made an effort to attend to our needs when asked, but it could be added that there was a lack of intuition that one comes to expect from such high luxury brands. In particular moments when one would normally be approached by staff to see if they could assist, staff were content to be distracted unless approached by a guest. Another critique would be the approach to the hotel’s size. It feels a bit impersonal with so many rooms and the many guests. Little details like using the guests name at check in or making light conversation in passing are certainly not mandatory, but are signature practices of excellent properties.


IMG_6321The hotel was full of amenities and it is very polished and well maintained. The rooms were well decorated, we received complementary water from the minibar, two welcome drinks per person and complementary wifi for having Hilton gold status. The gym is full of state of the art equipment and the sauna and steam facility is a comfortable lounge area with a friendly attendant. This is included in the reservation. There are a wide range of treatments in the massage facilities, several gift shops, sports excursions and even a historic property tour. There are a few restaurants on site offering fine cuisine at different times of the day and it is a popular spot for social events, meetings and their holiday and events calendars are quite an attraction in themselves. The Biltmore is an overall excellent property, it bears well its noble heritage, it embodies an almost there sense of sophistication and it offers a lot to enjoy and explore.





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