After taking advantage of the 4PM checkout at the Arizona Biltmore, I drove to the Hyatt Regency Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Gainey Ranch, where I’d booked a king room for $99.
The driveway was expansive, with large palm trees and plentiful parking.
The lobby was open and spacious, with a modern rustic theme.
There were once again no queues for check-in, though it still took several minutes to process the reservation and receive keys. I asked about the hotel’s occupancy, as I’m somewhat fascinated by the off-season hotel market, and was told they were less than 20% booked. The associate confirmed it was my first stay at this property, and then said “great, then let’s make this a special stay.” He assigned me a room on the second floor and gave me information about the club lounge.
Given the low occupancy and what I thought was the associate hinting at an upgrade, I was somewhat surprised to not receive any upgrade beyond the room category I’d booked. Then again, at this property the main difference between the base room and the higher room categories seems to be the view, which wasn’t a concern for me on this trip.
The room itself was modern and comfortable, and fairly typical of domestic Hyatt’s.
The balcony was small, but had comfortable furniture, and a nice view over the lagoon and cactus garden.
The bathroom was decently sized, and well laid out.
I particularly appreciated the shower, as the controls were on the opposite wall from the showerhead, making it possible to adjust the temperature without getting wet (yes, I probably stay at hotels too much given that I notice this).
The bath amenities were KenetMD, which I far prefer to the old
Porticrap Portico amenities.
As a Gold Passport Diamond member I had access to the Regency Club, which had offerings throughout the day.
The club was fairly large, with plentiful seating and floor-to-ceiling windows. Oddly, an entire section of the lounge was designated as “Adults Only”, which made more sense once I saw the quantity of children swarming the dessert buffet.
There was an assortment of beverages, including sodas, juice, coffee, tea, and water, and alcoholic drinks were available from the lounge staff for a fee.
The food spread was better than average for a domestic lounge, and the staff was great about replenishing items and keeping things tidy.
I spent a few hours working in the lounge, at which point the dessert spread was brought out. There were an assortment of cakes, candies, and cookies, which while beautiful and more than you’d usually get at a domestic Regency Club, weren’t especially tasty.
The oddest part of the dessert buffet had to be that half of the spread was packaged candy in jars.
Breakfast the next morning was served in the Regency Club as well, though the spread was somewhat disappointing in comparison to the selection offered in the evening.
After breakfast I spent some time exploring the resort, which was beautiful.
The lobby exited on to a large courtyard promenade, which was lined with restaurants and had several seating areas.
At the far end of the courtyard was the pool complex, which was awesome.
There were several different pool areas, and tons of seating, along with a waterslide and a sandy beach zone.
I would have loved to spend more time at the pool, but was oddly unable to get a late check-out. It’s not a guaranteed benefit for Diamond members at resorts, so I’m not complaining, but given the low occupancy I was surprised my initial request was denied. I was eventually granted a 2PM check-out, which puzzles me even further. If a 2PM check-out is possible, then it seems 4PM should be as well, in my opinion… especially at less than 20% occupancy!
Overall, the Hyatt Regency Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Gainey Ranch was a nice resort, and I wouldn’t hesitate to stay here again. It’s certainly not as lucrative as the Arizona Biltmore for a summer stay, but despite the mediocre elite recognition the resort as a whole is much nicer and newer, and the facilities are infinitely better.