Think of the family-owned Smoke Tree Resort and Bungalows (7101 E. Lincoln Dr., 480/948-7660, www.smoketreeresort.com , $150–175 d) as a Scottsdale-style bed-and-breakfast—in other words, a mini-resort. Smoke Tree is the longest-running independent hotel in Paradise Valley, and it’s no wonder. The charming Arizona decor of the 26 recently remodeled private bungalows feels like you are staying in a friend’s cozy guesthouse or at an exclusive retreat. There are one- and two-bedroom villas, some with small, full-service kitchens.
For more amenities, consider the Frank Lloyd Wright–inspired Doubletree Paradise Valley Resort (5401 N. Scottsdale Rd., 480/947-5400, www.doubletree.com , $125–175 d). The two large pools with whirlpools, racquetball and tennis courts, health club, and nine-hole putting green are fun for families and business travelers who would like a few distractions in between meetings. The spacious rooms are clean and bright, though a tad dated.
The charming Hermosa Inn (5532 N. Palo Cristi, 602/955-8614, www.hermosainn.com , $180–225 d) quietly exudes a taste of old Arizona. Cowboy artist Lon Megargee built the hacienda as his home and studio, and it was a converted into a small inn in the 1930s. Today, the intimate 35-room boutique hotel features authentic furnishings and artwork painted by Megargee, and guests should expect the quirks that come with a historic property, like small bathrooms and limited space for a pool and other amenities you’d find at the big resorts. The meticulously landscaped grounds, stunning views of Camelback Mountain , and prime location near Phoenix ’s Camelback Corridor can’t be beat, though.
The Scottsdale Cottonwood Resort and Suites (6160 N. Scottsdale Rd., 480/991-1414, www.scottsdalecottonwoods.com , $160–180 d) offers quite a bit of size for its relatively small price: a huge pool, big suites, and sprawling, well-maintained grounds. The budget resort could use an update—inside and out—but its convenient location next to the Borgata and Hilton Village shopping centers makes it a worthwhile option.