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best arizona vacations – 33 summer getaways
Things To Do
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Things To Do
Best Arizona Vacations – 33 Summer Getaways
June, 2011, Page 106
Water, Water Everywhere
JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort & Spa
3800 W. Starr Pass Blvd., Tucson
It’s no Colorado River, but JW Marriott’s Starr Canyon River is enough to lure water babies back to this luxurious Tucson resort summer after summer. The 177,000-gallon lazy river takes guests on a relaxing six-minute tube float around two sizeable islands, cooling them off along the way with 22 misting fountain jets.
For a more active aquatic adventure, the Monsoon Falls water slide rises 16 feet above pool level and stretches 110 feet long for an explosive splashdown. There are also four separate pools, including an adults-only pool at the Hashani Spa. Adding to the fun, the resort hosts dive-in movies, featuring family-friendly flicks every Friday evening.
When all that soaking has you feeling raisin-y, retreat to the comfort of your room while still enjoying a taste of the outdoors – each of the resort’s 575 spacious guestrooms and 35 suites features a private patio or balcony.
: The new “Family Fun” package (through September 5) offers daily recreation credits, including $150 toward spa services or golf, $50 toward meals and $50 for the new Blur Teen Lounge (featuring access to Apple iPads, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 Move games, and HDTVs) or the Rising Starr Kids’ Club (activities for children ages 4 to 12). Cost is $299 per night for up to two adults and two kids.
Photo courtesy of Forever Houseboats
Antelope Point Marina Houseboats
537 Marina Pkwy., Navajo Route 22B, Page
Don’t let Arizona’s lack of oceans dampen your plans to get wet this summer. Instead, head to Lake Powell, where vermilion sandstone cliffs and mazy canyons tower above deep blue waters. Nestled along a pristine peninsula on the lake, Antelope Point is a virtual village on a floating platform, complete with a restaurant, lounge, luxury shop and salmon-colored sandy beach.
Book a floating houseboat, which range in size from 59 feet (four bedrooms) to 75 feet (six private staterooms), and are tricked out with multiple flat-screen satellite TVs, state-of-the-art kitchens, canopied decks (some with hot tubs), a waterslide, gas barbecues and wet bars.
The Marina sports concierge will hook you up with water toys such as ski boats, kayaks, pontoons and custom charters to nearby Rainbow Bridge National Monument.
: Lease a luxury boat for $950 to $2,114 per day plus fuel (some require multi-day rental); check website for special events such as live music performances and wakeboarder/wakeskater competitions.
Briar Patch Inn
3190 N. State Rte. 89A, Sedona
This quaint mid-1940s B&B sprawls across nine acres on the serene banks of Oak Creek, with 19 cottages serenaded by the lyrical trickling of the creek’s cool waters. Cabins come family-style, with full kitchens, cozy bedrooms and spacious living rooms – or as romantic, intimate retreats for two.
Ike and JoAnn Olson purchased the property in 1983 (and run it today with their son, Rob Olson), upgrading the accommodations to rustic Southwestern elegance, featuring wood floors, lodge pole furniture and fireplaces. The real attraction, however, is the timeless spring-fed creek.
Enjoy breakfast on the creekside patio, nap in hammocks on the creek’s lush banks beneath sun-dappled oaks, and refresh with a dip in the inn’s private swimming holes.
Or settle into a leisurely afternoon of fishing; through September the creek is stocked with rainbow trout, which join the native German brown trout. Just remember to pack your own pole and bait; the inn does not provide them.
: From June 1 through August 31, guests staying two nights receive 15 percent off regular rates of $219 to $395 per night. Check the website for rotating specials on spa treatments.
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