Review: Hyatt Regency Scottsdale Resort & Spa At Gainey Ranch

Arizona Biltmore (Waldorf Astoria Resort)
Hyatt Regency Scottsdale Resort & Spa At Gainey Ranch
Aloft Phoenix Airport


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.

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Resort entrance

The driveway was expansive, with large palm trees and plentiful parking.

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Resort driveway

The lobby was open and spacious, with a modern rustic theme.

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Lobby

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Lobby and Concierge desk

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.

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Check-in area

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Hallway to room

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Interior atrium

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Room entrance

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.

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Floor layout

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Entryway

The room itself was modern and comfortable, and fairly typical of domestic Hyatt’s.

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King bed

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Desk

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Chair and lamp

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Guestroom

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TV and luggage stand

The balcony was small, but had comfortable furniture, and a nice view over the lagoon and cactus garden.

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Patio seating

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View of lagoon from balcony

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View from balcony

The bathroom was decently sized, and well laid out.

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Bathroom

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Toilet

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).

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Shower

The bath amenities were KenetMD, which I far prefer to the old Porticrap Portico amenities.

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Toiletries

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Sink and vanity

As a Gold Passport Diamond member I had access to the Regency Club, which had offerings throughout the day.

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Regency Club hours

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Regency Club entrance

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.

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Regency Club

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Regency Club seating

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Regency Club “Adults Only” seating

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Regency Club

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Regency Club patio

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.

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Chilled beverages

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Fruit and Ice

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Water and cookies

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Tea and coffee station

The food spread was better than average for a domestic lounge, and the staff was great about replenishing items and keeping things tidy.

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Regency Club buffet

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Crackers, cheese, and crudités

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Pasta salad and antipasti

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Eggrolls

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.

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Dessert buffet

The oddest part of the dessert buffet had to be that half of the spread was packaged candy in jars.

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Candy buffet

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Dessert

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Cookies

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.

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Breakfast cereals

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Jams and breads

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Assorted pastries

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Cold cuts

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Egg scramble

After breakfast I spent some time exploring the resort, which was beautiful.

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Lobby bar

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Lobby

The lobby exited on to a large courtyard promenade, which was lined with restaurants and had several seating areas.

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Courtyard seating

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Terrace

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Resort view

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Terrace seating

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Resort exterior

At the far end of the courtyard was the pool complex, which was awesome.

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Pool

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Water feature

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Pool

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Pool seating

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Pool

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Jacuzzi

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Pool

There were several different pool areas, and tons of seating, along with a waterslide and a sandy beach zone.

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Waterslide and cabanas

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Water polo net

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Beach-entry pool

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.

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Comments

  1. Water polo or water volleyball?:))
    Joking. Great review!
    We’ve stayed there 3 times and it a great location from which to explore Scottsdale/Phoenix.
    And you’re spot on with regard to prices in the summer. Very very good.

  2. I think that’s worth a mention, it’s a pretty unique thing. I believe dinner at one of the restaurants on property comes with 2 passes, that’s how we found out about it.

  3. Hmmm…the welcome message on the TV doesn’t look like your name. Perhaps a Lucky friend.

    How could they not have upgraded you or given later check-out given 20% capacity? Gheesh!

    Ahhh…the pools look inviting. Nice review!

  4. We love that place. LOVE. It might be my favorite domestic Hyatt.

    You didn’t say that you tried the spa. Did you try the spa? The free amenities in the spa (hot tub, cold dip, sauna, steam room, snacks, co-ed mineral pool, and outdoor showers [omg!]) are unparalleled, IME.

  5. Late checkout: Probably only a few housekeepers on duty with the low occupancy? Want them to be done with work by a certain time?

    There is a reason Scottsdale hotels are so inexpensive in the summer, as you highlight… I just could not bring myself to take advantage of these deals when it means being stuck inside with AC much of the day.

    Meanwhile, Seattle / Bellevue is generally sold out these days (summer) and finding rates under $250 (even for Courtyards and HGI’s) is difficult!

    Can I rent your apartment from you while you are on the road? 🙂

  6. @ Lark — That was my thinking as well, though don’t get why they couldn’t just service the room the next day. Guess they value going by “the book” more than they do giving a Diamond guest what they should reasonably get, in my opinion.

  7. Ok, so call me a pervert, but that painting behind the buffet just looks like triangles and penises. Every single photo made me snort with laughter.

  8. Best Kept Secret of this Property:

    If the Adult pool is too full or you just want peace and quiet away from where alcohol just might be being served in abundance at the Adult Pool….then, visit the Spa – get a Day Pass (free with Regency Club). Aside from the separate men’s/women’s areas there is a co-de pool in the middle that is quiet and peaceful – mineral pool – no smell of chlorine and you can order from a short list of food and beverage items including lunch!

  9. Andaz Scottsdale is now open for reservations from Nov 01, 2016 on-wards. Rates are not attractive and as of today (31-MAY-2016), the site shows neither a award night availability nor a revenue suite availability to use with DSU.

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