At the Crowne Plaza Phoenix Airport, concierge Jason Minzey offers advice on what to do, eat and see in Arizona’s capital and largest city. Here he offers expert tips for business travelers.
What should business travelers pack when visiting your city?
Arizona has 360 days of sun per year, so bring sunscreen, a hat and lightweight clothing in light colors. Pack a light sweater or jacket for winter or nighttime.
What are your top restaurant recommendations for a business lunch or dinner?
El Chorro (5550 E. Lincoln Drive; Paradise Valley; Ph: 480-948-5170) serves Southwestern cuisine with a contemporary flair and great views. It’s in a historic building overlooking Camelback and Mummy mountains. The Stockyards (5009 E. Washington St., Phoenix; Ph: 602-273-7378) dates back to the early 1900s, when it was a meeting place for local cattlemen. Durant’s (2611 North Central Ave., Phoenix; Ph: 602-264-5967) has a mid-century Frank Sinatra vibe. You enter through the kitchen to a traditional steakhouse. Avanti (2728 E. Thomas Road, Phoenix; Ph: 602-956-0900) has served up Italian and continental cuisine for 40 years.
What’s something that surprises guests about your city or hotel?
We’re just across the street from a 1,500-year-old Hohokam archeological site and pueblo. This Native American landmark is part of the Pueblo Grande Museum and Archaeological Park.
If business travelers only have a few hours for leisure, what must they see?
The Desert Botanical Garden offers a fine collection of plants from deserts around the world. Stroll trails that crisscross the site, and stay late enough to watch the desert sunset. The Heard Museum is one of the best places to learn about the myriad of cultures that shaped the Southwest, as well as see some incredible art from American Indians of the region.
What’s the best option for outdoor exercise?
Mountain trails for hiking and biking surround Phoenix, located in one of the most colorful deserts in the world. In the spring, vibrant blooming cactuses and wildflowers add to the palette. The Valley of the Sun—the Phoenix metropolitan area—also is home to more 250 golf courses, which are warmed by the sun all winter.
Concierge Jason Minzey’s top tips for getting business right in Phoenix:
Tip 1: Business casual is acceptable attire for meetings and dining out, so leave your necktie at home.
Tip 2: Your local colleagues and clients will appreciate it if you know a little about the diverse cultures of the metropolitan region.
Tip 3: Stay hydrated! The extreme heat and low humidity affect visitors very quickly. Make sure you’re drinking enough water to keep yourself healthy and business-ready.