10 boutique hotels in Scottsdale for a stylish desert retreat

In a town brimming with posh resorts and business-class hotels, Scottsdale's boutique hotels offer a unique, personal experience that will help make your stay in this upscale desert city more memorable. 

At the top of our list is the Hotel Valley Ho. This chic, mid-century modern hotel is the city's most popular boutique hotel. Back in the day, celebrities like Bing Crosby, Tony Curtis and Janet Leigh were known to drop into the hotel, and teen idols Natalie Wood and Robert Wagner even held their 1957 wedding reception in the hotel ballroom. Today, scenesters still crowd the pool area at Hotel Valley Ho, a midcentury gem that continues to be a hub for stylish travelers. You can't beat the location either, right on Main Street in Old Town Scottsdale. 

The Scott, formerly Kimpton's Firesky Resort, brings a dash of tropical chic to central Scottsdale. The recently updated hotel boasts a unique Spanish Revival meets Bauhaus design, smoothly blended with the amenities of a traditional luxury resort. 

For an affordable boutique hotel experience in Scottsdale, take respite at the 3 Palms, a contemporary stay in a low-rise adobe structure. Step into the peaceful lobby featuring desert stone accents set in hand-laid white crystal granite and you'll hopefully feel the stress of traveling start to melt away. Rooms are on the smaller side, but comfortable and clean. 


Sonesta Suites Scottsdale Gainey Ranch (formerly Gainey Suites Hotel)
Photo courtesy of Gainey Suites Hotel

Sonesta Suites Scottsdale Gainey Ranch (formerly Gainey Suites Hotel) is an all-suite hotel offering many of the same amenities you'll find at a larger resort. Guests have access to the Gainey Village Health Club & Spa for a spa treatment and fitness facilities. The hotel offers easy access to the Shops at Gainey Village, one of Scottsdale's premier shopping destinations featuring fine dining and specialty boutiques. The hotel is decorated in warm desert tones and features a courtyard with desert gardens. A complimentary daily hot breakfast, afternoon drinks and appetizers, and a pool and jacuzzi round out the amenities at this Scottsdale boutique hotel.

Recommended for Boutique Hotels because: Complimentary hot breakfast and great Gainey Village location make Sonesta Suites one of the best boutique value stays in Scottsdale.

Read more about Sonesta Suites Scottsdale Gainey Ranch (formerly Gainey Suites Hotel) →

3 Palms
Photo courtesy of 3 Palms Hotel

This contemporary boutique hotel, situated in an appealing low-rise adobe structure on busy McDowell Road, offers an oasis of calm and comfort from the hubbub of Scottsdale. The hotel provides easy access to many of the city's shopping, museums, restaurants, and local attractions. The 24-hour lobby is both understated and highly stylized, featuring desert stone accents hand-laid in white crystal granite. All rooms are decorated with contemporary custom-made furnishing and feature carefully-selected modern art. Although this is not the swankiest boutique hotel in town, everything here is designed to promote a sense of tranquility, perfect for a relaxing desert getaway.

Recommended for Boutique Hotels because: 3 Palms is a boutique budget stay offering easy access to downtown and Old Town Scottsdale.

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If you want to stay in one of Scottsdale's most stylish boutique hotels, look no further than the W Scottsdale. The AAA Four-Diamond hotel is located in the heart of the city's bustling entertainment district. Guest rooms feature plush, modern decor and top-of-the-line bath amenities. The hotel is home to one of the city's hottest sushi restaurants, Sushi Roku. Relax and grab a drink at the Living Room Lounge, home to a menu of signature cocktails. There is even an indoor/outdoor bar, the Shade Lounge, where DJ spins tunes while guests lounge poolside. The hotel is located within walking distance to Old Town Scottsdale shops, galleries, restaurants and nightlife.

Recommended for Boutique Hotels because: W Scottsdale is a chic, boutique getaway located in the heart of Old Town Scottsdale.

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Omni Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Montelucia
Photo courtesy of Montelucia Resort & Spa

This posh Scottsdale boutique resort and spa seek to recreate the essence of southern Europe in the heart of Scottsdale. Montelucia is inspired by the rich history and sunny climes of Spain's Andalusia region. The resort is at the foothills of iconic Camelback Mountain, offering an ideal location for achieving a quiet, tranquil escape from the city. Enjoy amazing sunset and city views, great hiking, golf, recreation, and easy access to the nightlife, galleries and entertainment that Scottsdale is famous for. Montelucia is also home to the award-winning Prado restaurant and Joya Spa. Guestrooms are comfortably appointed with deluxe furnishings, with many rooms affording great city or mountain views.

Recommended for Boutique Hotels because: Great views of Camelback Mountain and stunning Andalusian-inspired decor make the Montelucia a winning boutique stay in Scottsdale.

Read more about Omni Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Montelucia →

Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain Resort and Spa
Photo courtesy of Sanctuary on Camelback

This luxury boutique hideaway on Camelback has been a personal sanctuary for Hollywood celebrities, honeymooners, and solo travelers seeking a unique retreat in the desert. The resort overlooks Paradise Valley, offering spectacular views of the desert landscape. Guests are invited to relax in a spa or mountainside casita. Sanctuary Spa offers a host of Asian-inspired treatments and classes designed to relax and rejuvenate. Dine at the award-winning Elements, with cuisine designed by Food Network star Chef Beau MacMillan, or savor a signature cocktail and enjoy unrivaled views at the popular Jade Bar. Tennis, hiking, lounging, shopping: it's all at your fingertips during your stay at Sanctuary on Camelback, one of the Valley's premier boutique resorts.

Recommended for Boutique Hotels because: Travelers looking for a luxurious boutique stay in Scottsdale will revel in the grand vistas and posh amenities at the Sanctuary.

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Formerly known as Kimpton's Firesky Resort, The Scott is one of the newer boutique resort offerings in central Scottsdale. The recently updated hotel boasts a unique Spanish Revival meets Bauhaus design, and it brings a dash of tropical chic to Scottsdale's crowded pool scene. It boasts an impressive indoor/outdoor lobby, with rattan furnishings and lots of greenery, which was inspired by the porches of Old Havana. As of 2017, guest rooms are in the process of being renovated to include private outdoor patios and balconies, as well as updated bathrooms. What hasn't changed, however, is the resort's killer location, which is convenient to both Old Town and North Scottsdale.

Recommended for Boutique Hotels because: With a unique Spanish Revival meets Bauhaus design concept, The Scott delivers a chic boutique resort experience in a convenient location.

Read more about The Scott Resort & Spa (formerly FireSky Resort) →

Paradise Valley

The Hermosa Inn, a boutique hideaway that was once the home and studio of Western artist Lon Megargee, features 34 hacienda-style accommodations and casitas on more than six acres of attractive desert landscaping. Each room and suite is decorated in an elegant and warm Southwestern style. Fireplaces, secluded patios, and vaulted ceilings are some of the amenities you'll find here. Most rooms also offer newly remodeled bathrooms featuring Waterworks fixtures, antique pedestal tubs, and luxe bedding. Complimentary high-speed wireless Internet is offered throughout the property. For some of the best dining in the Valley, reserve your seat at the Hermosa Inn's on-site restaurant, Lon's at the Hermosa.

Recommended for Boutique Hotels because: The Hermosa Inn offers a beautiful, Southwestern respite to weary travelers.

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If you're looking for a boutique hotel in downtown Scottsdale, the Bespoke Inn offers a distinctive stay with luxury touches. The small, bicycle-themed inn only has four rooms, each decorated with unique decor and well-appointed with Kings Down mattresses, luxury bedding, 38″ flat-screen TVs with expanded channel selections and small refrigerators. The three bottom-level floors have high ceilings and French doors that open up into a courtyard featuring mature olive trees and lots of cozy sitting nooks. The signature suite has reclaimed wood floors with French doors opening to a wrap-around balcony. All rooms have private baths. There is also a rooftop garden, 43-foot-long infinity pool, and Pashley bicycles that you can borrow to ride around downtown. One of Scottsdale's best restaurants, Virtu Honest Craft, is located on-site.

Recommended for Boutique Hotels because: Bespoke Inn is a four-room inn loaded with character and luxury amenities, making this one of the best boutique stays in Scottsdale.

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The Saguaro is the newest addition to Scottsdale's thriving boutique hotel scene. Bright, vibrant, and bold, The Saguaro is inspired by the contemporary architecture of Mexico and the Southwest. The hotel is designed to highlight the color and light of the surrounding desert landscape. Every guestroom is accented by the color of a native desert flower, creating a bold visual spectrum throughout the hotel that is undeniably appealing and energizing. Room furnishings feature contemporary and natural wood and leather tables and chairs, with several hand-crafted pieces imported from Mexico. The Saguaro Hotel is also home to Distrito, one of Scottsdale's hottest new restaurants, featuring Mexico City-style street food, over 100 varieties of tequila, and a full menu of specialty cocktails.

Recommended for Boutique Hotels because: For hip downtown boutique stay, book a room at the colorful, vibrant Saguaro Hotel, located within walking distance to the excitement of Old Town Scottsdale.

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Art District

Where is the hippest place to stay in downtown Scottsdale? Although others may be vying for the title, Hotel Valley Ho continues to be Scottsdale's preeminent hip hotel. Built in 1956 and reopened in 2005, the hotel has a long and storied history as a destination for young and stylish travelers. Back in its early days, the hotel attracted a cadre of young celebrities, including Bing Crosby and Tony Curtis. Today, locals and travelers gather at the Valley Ho to mingle at the oh-so-cool ZuZu Lounge, relax at the VH Spa, or enjoy one of the spacious suites in the seven-story Tower, the elite hotel within a hotel featuring generously sized signature guest rooms.

Recommended for Boutique Hotels because: The historic Hotel Valley Ho continues to draw stylish travelers to downtown Scottsdale.

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Meet Patricia Escarcega

Patricia Escarcega works as a writer and editor in Phoenix.