Three places in Arizona made The New York Times list of “31 Places to Go This Summer,” providing a potential boost to the state’s tourism.
Two of the places – Monument Valley (No. 12) and Lake Powell (No. 22) – may seem obvious choices.
The not so obvious choice was downtown Scottsdale, which came in at No. 9 despite the summer being the Valley’s off season.
“Downtown Scottsdale is turning into a desert version of Miami’s South Beach. No ocean of course, but plenty of late-night partying and a buzzing hotel scene,” The Times said.
The story mentioned the August opening of the W Scottsdale Hotel & Residences as the latest addition to Scottsdale’s stable of luxury hotels.
“Being on a list of the New York Times, people from around the country and world will see that,” said Rachel Pearson, director of corporate communications for the Scottsdale Convention & Visitors Bureau.
The listing comes as the bureau targets southern Californians with an advertising blitz in San Diego Magazine, San Diego Union-Tribune, SignOnSanDiego.com and LATimes.com.
“People are always looking for great bargains and great deals closer to home,” Pearson said, noting the search for cheaper travel destinations is greater this year because of higher fuel and transportation costs.
Topping the Times travel list was Texas’ hill country, the rolling landscape west of Austin and north of San Antonio, which features 22 wineries.
Of Monument Valley, the newspaper said, “You’ve seen it in countless spaghetti western and Marlboro ads. But the iconic red buttes and mesas of Monument Valley, in the heart of Navajo country, offers more than just postcard-ready views of the quintessential American West. The wind-scraped valley . . . also draws horseback riders, mountain bikers, river rafters and other outdoor enthusiasts.”
Of Lake Powell, The Times said, “With nearly 200 miles of clear blue water and stark red rock, Lake Powell is a boating paradise.”
But we knew that.