Royal Palms Resort and Spa is a luxury Phoenix, Arizona resort.

Travel Bag Bites: August 2017

Written by Craig Outhier Category: Adventures Issue: August 2017
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As editors of a city lifestyle magazine with a travel section that covers locales far beyond our beloved Phoenix Valley, you can imagine that we get pitched A TON about new and exciting travel offers around the country. Of course, we can't fit everything into a 200 page monthly magazine that only allots five of those pages to regional travel. Sigh... 'tis the nature of publishing.

But it pains us too much to kill all of our darlings. So each month, we scrape a few travel tidbits off the cutting room floor and bring you Travel Bag Bites – bite-sized travel-related goodies (special offers, activities and deals) to snack on while planning your next great escape.

“Daycation”? A startup called ResortPass is bringing some healthy disruption to the staycation industry. Designed for locals who want to drink up the resort pool scene without booking a room, the service contracts with top resorts to sell resort passes – currently $35-$60 in the Phoenix area – to daycationers. Current Valley participants include Royal Palms, Westin Kierland and Hyatt Regency. More information at

Higher Learning. The newest hotelier in the Valley is not Marriott or Starwood – it’s Grand Canyon University. The privately owned college recently renovated a low-rent hotel near its West Valley campus, outfitting the structure with an on-site restaurant, Canyon 49, plus a swank pool complex and classy porte-cochère. Find more information about the GCU Hotel at

The new America. One of Flagstaff’s most beloved flops – the Little America Hotel, where legions of families have shacked up during Polar Express visits – is getting a makeover. The resort’s “complete reimaging” begins with 124 remodeled rooms, slated to open this summer. The new amenities include plush down bedding, granite vanities and in-room artwork. More information at