Scottsdale, Arizona MAST Conference
May 4-9 2017
Known as the "West's Most Western Town", Scottsdale is also referred to as the "desert version of Miami's South Beach" because of the chic and urban vibe of the downtown area with trendy restaurants, upscale shopping areas, luxury boutiques, and hip nightclubs. Yet Scottsdale has also retained it's small town cowboy image of the past in its Old Town area.
Our days were filled with educating and familiarizing ourselves with various companies, as well as Scottsdale. The excursions we were able to go on are as follows:
Taliesin West Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin West is Scottsdale’s only National Historic Landmark. It serves as a prime example of Wright’s organic architecture in that the structures are built of the rocks and sand of the Sonoran Desert and melds to the lower McDowell Mountains. Set amid a Sonoran Desert Preserve of 491 acres, Taliesin West tours wind through provocative terraces, landscaped gardens and walkways commanding dramatic views of Camelback Mountain and the Valley of the Sun. The guided tour include visits to the Cabaret Theater, Kiva, and Wright’s private office which highlight the dramatic beauty of Taliesin West’s landscaped grounds and desert masonry structures. We were also treated to the Wrights’ private quarters and living room, the gracious Taliesin West “Garden Room”, and the drafting studio.
Musical Instrument Museum
MIM displays more than 6,500 instruments collected from around 200 of the world’s countries and territories. Most displays are enhanced by state-of-the-art audio and video technologies that allow guests to see the instruments, hear their sounds, and observe them being played in their original contexts—performances that are often as spectacular as the instruments themselves. What’s more, you can play instruments from around the world in the Experience Gallery. You will also see instruments from music icons such as John Lennon, Taylor Swift, Elvis Presley, Carlos Santana, and many more in the Artist Gallery. After a one hour guided tour, we were able to explore the museum and play the instruments.
Food Tour of Old Town Scottsdale
Scottsdale is known for its unique, diverse culinary scene – from fun western saloons to authentic ethic cafes. Visit some of the Old Town’s best known venues during a tour specifically designed to give you a true Scottsdale gastronomic experience.
Places we visited were:
The Rusty Spur Saloon
5th and Wine
Desert Botanical Gardens - Garden Tour and Taste of the Southwest
Enjoy a private guided tour of the garden emphasizing ethnobotany (the scientific study of the traditional knowledge and customs of a people concerning plants and their medical, religious, and other uses) and how native plants are used for food, tools and shelter. We were then led to a private dining location where we learned how the food is prepared and then savored every bite of a locally sourced garden fresh meal.
Hummer Tour of Sonoran Desert
Apache legend claims that the entrance to the underworld lies somewhere in the Superstition Mountains. Other myths allege that deep in the heart of this craggy range lies a gold mine full of treasure. Come with us to find out whether that’s true on the Bulldog Canyon trail, which winds through the Sonoran Desert, offering panoramic views of the Superstition Mountains. The land in this part of Arizona is wild and untamed, but rugged landscape is no problem when you’re in the backseat of a Hummer H1. Sit down, buckle up, and hang on for nearly 20 miles of breathtaking desert vistas. One of the most beautiful characteristics of the Sonoran Desert is its versatility: One minute you’ll be hurtling along a dusty desert trail, only to find yourself fording a 2.5-foot-deep river the next. Don’t worry, the Hummer H1 isn’t afraid of a little water. Are you?
Museum of the West
Scottsdale’s Museum of the West boldly immerses its guests in the unique story of the Greater Western region, illuminating the past to shape our future. The Museum’s bold, dramatic, authentic, experiential, and participatory exhibitions and programs present Western art and culture through images, narrative, and multimedia. After a docent led tour, explore Old Town Scottsdale. “The heart of the city”, Old Town Scottsdale is a Western-tinged quarter that celebrates the city’s past while still remaining a lively point of destination for locals and visitors. Whether you’re shopping for hand-crafted jewelry, dining at a hot new gastropub, or stepping behind the red velvet rope at a downtown nightspot, this lively, pedestrian-friendly zone is one of the most popular and unique neighborhoods in Scottsdale and the Phoenix Metro area. Shop, view the galleries or relax in one of the cafes – this is your free time to explore.
LDV Winery Tasting and Exploration of Old Town Scottsdale
Sample some of Arizona’s finest wines and then browse the unique shops and art galleries of Old Town Scottsdale. Voted Scottsdale’s Best Tasting Room in 2015, LDV Winery’s Wine Gallery brings a bit of the vineyard to Old Town Scottsdale. It showcases the artistry of winemaking and grape growing while providing a unique venue for Arizona artists and crafts people to be discovered. “The heart of the city”, Old Town Scottsdale is a Western-tinged quarter that celebrates the city’s past while still remaining a lively point of destination for locals and visitors. Whether you’re shopping for hand-crafted jewelry, dining at a hot new gastropub, or stepping behind the red velvet rope at a downtown nightspot, this lively, pedestrian-friendly zone is one of the most popular and unique neighborhoods in Scottsdale and the Phoenix Metro area. Shop, view the galleries or relax in one of the cafes – this is your free time to explore.
The mission of the Heard Museum is to educate visitors and promote greater public understanding of the arts, heritage and life ways of the indigenous peoples of the Americas, with an emphasis on American Indian tribes and other cultures of the Southwest. Dedicated to the sensitive and accurate portrayal of Native arts and cultures, the Heard is an institution that successfully combines the stories of American Indian people from a personal perspective with the beauty of art. Through innovative programs, world-class exhibitions and unmatched festivals, the Heard Museum sets the standard nationally for collaborating with Native people to present first-person voices. Partnerships with American Indian artists and tribal communities provide visitors with a distinctive perspective about the art and cultures of Native people, especially those from the Southwest.
Thanks, MAST for taking us on this wonderful trip to learn!
More photos to come... soon!
Posted by: Starship Travel
May 24, 2017