Guest Editorial: Scottsdale Is Far From Dead In The Dead Of Summer

By Jessica Troy —

It seems oxymoronic to associate summer vacation and travel with Scottsdale.

Arizona is infamous for its heat and in the past that has led to plenty of summer vacation escapes and a seasonal slowdown for tourism and local consumer spending.

That is increasingly a thing of the past.

Just check out Old Town and downtown Scottsdale. There are still tourists, especially in the mornings checking out the Scottsdale Waterfront. Restaurants, bars and shops are seeing customers and visitors especially on weekends and evenings.

Some of the summer activity in Old Town and downtown is born from Scottsdale’s diverse employment base. Technology workers from the likes of Indeed and Yelp are now part of the jobs mix along with artists and creatives. They go to lunch, grab coffee, shop and have happy hours in Old Town now. That includes during June, July and August.

Tourists are also still coming to visit our beautiful city for everything else we have to offer, despite the heat.

‘It’s a dry heat’ repeats consistently through every Arizonans mouth yet it is affirmed through visitors’ experiences here.

Resorts, shopping destinations,  the arts, restaurants and our beautiful and differing nature all increase Scottsdale’s desirability. With the desert landscape prominent in fashion and art around the globe, Arizona has become the new hip place to visit. This trend seems to be confirmed with it being the new holiday spot for all the Kardashians.

We need to be aware that despite the summer heat Scottsdale is still a destination beyond the air conditioning of Scottsdale Fashion Square.

There is no doubt to tourism’s huge economic impact for Scottsdale and the state. In 2017 visitors, through their local spending, created an annual economic impact of $2.4 billion in just in Scottsdale. The city attracted 4.5 million overnight visitors and 4.4 million ‘day trip’ visitors in 2017.

Tourism is one of Scottsdale’s largest industries and integral to the sustainability and growth of the city. One in every eight jobs in Scottsdale is directly related to tourism.

Scottsdale just ranked second in the U.S. for summer jobs behind only Orlando, according to a Wallet Hub study.

Arizona and Scottsdale tourism has been marketed to the likes of Chicago, Denver and New York domestically and international markets such as Germany, France and the U.K.

International tourists have long been fascinated by Arizona’s desert landscape as well as cowboy and Native American heritages. Some of them actually want to see and experience a desert summer first-hand.

Summer rates can make for extended stays and broaden the customer base at five-star resorts.

Locals might lament the onset of the summer heat. But there is a global surge in tourism with more and more travelers looking for unique experiences.

The desert, hiking and Scottsdale’s amenities (ranging from resorts, art and bars to a blossoming culinary and wine scene) can put us more on the summer travel map.

All that coupled with the growth of jobs in Scottsdale makes the city far from dead even in the dead of summer.