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October 6, 2009

Scottsdale Luxury Round-Up For October

By Pardhasaradhi Gonuguntla

The highlight of Scottsdale Fashion Square’s expansion will culminate with the debut of Barneys New York on Oct. 15. The Manhattan-based specialty retailer makes every fashionista’s day with a 5,000-square-foot shoe salon for footwear fiends, a shop for fine leather goods, Barneys CO-OP and Fred’s restaurant, the infamous brasserie serving Italian-American cuisine using local ingredients. Other new-to-market retailers include Michael Stars , Ed Hardy and Love Culture, the new concept from the founders of Forever 21. In honor of the expansion, a new art exhibit, The Mannequin is Our Muse, will be on display throughout the mall featuring works of art created by local artists and celebrities.

Shaking things up on the steakhouse scene is Modern Steak , opening Oct. 26 in the new Barney’s wing. Executive Chef Andrew Ashmore, who previously served under culinary legend Michael Mina, will serve dishes like smoked salmon tater tots with horseradish aioli and caramelized Brussels sprout leaves with applewood bacon. The restaurant’s selection of meat – the real star of the menu – includes antibiotic and growth hormone-free beef, free-range chicken, lamb, pork and line-caught sustainable fish. The restaurant also will boast a concierge to assist with Scottsdale travel needs, a “walk-up” menu and window for on-the-go shoppers and an extensive drink menu with approximately 300 bottles of wine.

A multi-million dollar renovation is underway at Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain Resort and Spa and is expected to be complete in fall 2010. The resort will remain open during the duration of the project, but a transformation will take place behind the scenes in the elements kitchen which will expand to double its current size. The restaurant’s menu will evolve and introduce new concepts and flavors. Also in development is private dining room XII, which will feature a wine corridor exhibiting 800 bottles and a sommelier station. Sanctuary’s Sunset Patio also will be reincarnated, offering an outdoor dining experience with views of Camelback Mountain and Paradise Valley.

Take an unforgettable journey through the vivid first nations of Arizona and North America with the eighth season of Native Trails, presented by the Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation and produced by the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts . Taking place most Thursdays and Saturdays from Jan. 21 – April 10, 2010, the series of free festivals inspire attendees with memorable musical performances and traditional dances. Tribes represented include Zuni, Salt River Pima-Maricopa, Hopi, Yavapai, Apache and Diné (Navajo). The event celebrates Native American society and focuses on the individual cultures of these Southwest tribes. Performers present their history, pottery, textiles and more to introduce attendees to the diverse lifestyles. Native Trails is held in downtown at the Scottsdale Civic Center Mall and performances end in an audience-participation round dance that draws in the crowd and completes the educational journey.

Spa Avania at the Hyatt Regency Scottsdale Resort and Spa at Gainey Ranch has rolled out its Metabolic Boot Camp program in partnership with Lobo Fitness. The program corresponds with the spa’s time-of-day concept to produce three 55-minute classes that change for morning, midday and evening. The morning format fires up your metabolism to prepare for the day ahead and combines athletic drills, sports-simulated moves, plyometrics and isolation of major muscle groups. You will detoxify your body while building muscle and burning significant calories. Body shaping is the focus of the midday class which revolves around awareness, core activation, strength and power. Exercises also increase flexibility and provide balance with the incorporation of bozu and medicine balls as well as mat workouts. Finally, the evening class emphasizes stretching and deep breathing to help achieve muscle relaxation and tension release while restoring your mind, body and spirit. Cost is $18 per person for group workouts and rates are available for private, one-on-one training.

Desert Botanical Garden is once again hosting its unique Southwest holiday tradition, Las noches de las luminarias, beginning Dec. 3 and culminating on Dec. 30. The Garden’s distinctive and world-renowned plant collection is the ideal setting to enjoy more than 7,000 hand-lit luminarias that line its trails, buildings and courtyards. The new Berlin Agave Yucca Forest , opening Nov. 21, will be lit for the first time. Follow the sounds of Valley musicians throughout the Garden trails and enjoy intimate gathering areas to sit and enjoy a musical performance, warming fire, cup of cider or glass of wine.

For another must-see winter celebration, be sure to visit the Phoenix Zoo for the annual Zoolights tradition Nov. 27 through Jan. 11, 2010. As the sun goes down, the Zoo transforms into a brilliant display of more than 2.5 million lights and this year its all about orangutans as the Zoo builds an all-new exhibit. A larger-than-life lighted orangutan greets you at the entrance while other primate light displays swing through the trees right above your head. The Zoo continues its tradition of eco-friendly practices with LED lights that consume less energy than standard light bulbs and the event also is powered by SRP EarthWise Energy.

Holidays at the Heard returns to the Heard Museum Dec. 26 through Jan. 3, 2010 with exciting performances and artist demonstrations that introduce visitors to traditional and contemporary American Indian music, dance and art. And be sure to try some fry bread, a crowd favorite! Trying to find a way to work off those holiday pounds? Experience the Early Christmas Present for You! trek with Take a Hike Arizona on Dec. 23 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Additional hikes will be available throughout the holiday season where you can traverse the Sonoran Desert landscape with professional guides.

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