Ask a concierge: Phoenix

At the FOUND:RE Phoenix, concierge Rachel Crissinger is the in-house expert on what to see and where to dine in Arizona’s capital city. Here she draws on six years of experience to offer guidance to business travelers visiting this desert metropolis.

What should business travelers pack?

Comfortable walking shoes are a must for getting around downtown Phoenix and enjoying the Roosevelt Row arts district. You can supplement your walk by hopping on and off the city’s light rail, which runs past office buildings, galleries, shops, boutiques and restaurants.

What are your top restaurant recommendations for a business lunch or dinner?

Of course we want people to know about our own MATCH Cuisine & Cocktails (1100 N. Central Ave. Phoenix; Ph: 602-875-8080). Outside the hotel, you can’t go wrong with an old-school power lunch at Durant’s (three martinis optional). You’ll find the classic steakhouse at 2611 N. Central Ave.; Ph: 602-264-5967. And dinner at Hanny’s (40 N. First St.; Ph: 602-252-2285) is a great way to people watch in a very cool setting—a former department store.

What’s one thing that always surprises guests about your city?

People continue to be surprised by the funky, artistic edge to be found in and around downtown Phoenix. Local arts, music and foodie culture thrive here.

If business travelers only have a few hours for leisure, what must they see in your city?

You can’t go wrong with a visit to the Phoenix Art Museum, accessible via the light rail line. Aside from the stunning permanent collection, there are always very cool rotating exhibits at the museum. A little-known must-see is the Orpheum Theatre. You can tour this former movie house—now a performance space—for a time-traveling trip back to early 20th century Phoenix.

What’s the best option for outdoor exercise in your city?

Hiking Camelback Mountain is a fun and accessible way to get your exercise in, and see some glorious desert scenery while you’re at it.

Business know-how

Concierge Rachel Crissinger´s top tips for getting business right in Phoenix:

  1. Phoenix weather ranges from balmy to super hot—ties are generally optional.
  2. Traffic and parking can make driving downtown a pain. Give yourself little extra time to get to your downtown appointments. Or take the light rail, which is just US$2 per trip.
  3. Phoenix is a laid-back, open city. Expect people to say hello and smile, even during casual encounters; our friendliness will make you want to give a smile in return.

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