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I’m starting a new trip report today! I’m way behind on our travels, and we took this particular trip back in February for my birthday. (That’s kind of become a tradition for us now. Traveling on our birthdays and anniversary).
This year’s trip was to Tucson, Arizona. I had originally thought of taking a nice relaxing spa-like vacation to Scottsdale, Arizona, but for some reason, I can’t view vacations as “relaxing” time. I always want to be on the go. So, I opted for Tucson instead, mostly because it seemed like there were a lot more activities and things to do in that area, compared to Scottsdale.
We flew American Airlines nonstop from DC to Phoenix. We booked the tickets in cash (as opposed to free seats using points and miles), and actually booked first class, since first class was only marginally more expensive than coach. Once we arrived in Phoenix, we rented a car and drove to Tucson. It was a 1.5 hour drive or so, and I thought that would be easier than having to take a flight connection to get to Tucson. (There were no nonstops between DC and Tucson).
Once we arrived in Tucson, we checked into our STUNNING hotel, and that’s what I’m covering here in this post.
Catalina King Room at Hacienda del Sol
We booked a “Catalina King” room at the Hacienda del Sol. I booked the hotel using the “Amex Extra Night Offer” that was available directly through Hacienda del Sol’s website. It essentially was a “buy three nights get one night free” deal. The rooms at Hacienda del Sol definitely aren’t cheap (although there are certainly more expensive hotels in Tucson), so the free night was a great deal!
So, let me just start with the bottom line here. This room was perfect. Frankly, the entire hotel was perfect. I feel like I have never said that about a hotel before in my life. Even the crazy “fancy” hotels we’ve stayed at, like the Park Hyatt Moscow, the Andaz Fifth Avenue, and the Casa Marina Waldorf Astoria were never “perfect.” But this one was damn near perfect. (Already sold on the idea of staying there? You can book it now at Booking.com.
When you first walked into the room, there was a decent sized closet on the left, and next to that there was a barn door on the left leading to the bathroom, and the bedroom down the hall.
The bedroom area was spacious and had a king size bed, a chair with ottoman, desk, and a small “sideboard” type dresser that housed the miniature fridge.
From the bed, there was an enormous sliding glass door that led onto the balcony.
I’d just like to talk about these balcony doors for a second. First, there was a fully integrated screen so that you could enjoy the desert winter air without all the bugs. I’m pretty sure we even slept one night with the screen letting in those nice breezes.
The balcony itself was quite spacious and had a small table and two chairs, along with a lounge chair and a side table.
And, because they really did think of every detail, there was a small curtain on the one side of the balcony. I only noticed it after the sun was shining so brightly from that side the one afternoon. I was like, “dang, if only there was some sort of shade over there.” Sure enough, I glanced over, and there was a curtain that had been previously tied back out of view. So I untied it and closed it when that afternoon sun was shining through the side.
The bathroom in the Catalina King was also just about perfect.
There were two sinks PLUS a vanity area which is a huge bonus for me to have a spot to put my makeup and skincare stash while on vacation. Seriously, vanities are so rare in hotels.
The shower had a rain shower head, and the shower was enormous and had a great bench. But here’s why I say the bathroom was “just about” perfect. And it’s all because of a personal preference of mine. The shower didn’t have a door. I love taking crazy hot showers and letting all the steam build up. When there’s no door, all that steam escapes, minimizing the comforting feeling I get from a hot shower.
It’s worth noting that Ken does not share my affinity for scalding hot showers and had zero complaints that the shower did not have a door.
The toilet was behind a separate door in the bathroom, which is always a huge plus for hotel rooms. (It’s just on the other side of that barn door)
The closet was also a decent size, and had a tall chest of drawers, some hangers, and housed the room safe.
The Hacienda del Sol is a sprawling property, with a handful of rooms in each building “unit.”
We were in room 103, which somewhat confusingly, was on the second floor of one of the building units.
You had to walk up a small flight of stairs to get to the second floor, but it’s worth noticing the bellhop service was great, so we never even had to carry our bags up or down the stairs. I also loved that the stairs were decorated with local tiles.
And here is just a smattering of other building units to show how sprawling the property is.
Hotel Grounds at Hacienda del Sol
This hotel had such a unique design and layout. The desert landscaping made the entire area cozy.
There was also a number of art pieces throughout the grounds which added a lot of visual interest.
And as I mentioned earlier, I loved all the local tiles!
Pools and Lounge Spaces at Hacienda del Sol
There were two pools, along with hot tubs. (Although we never got a chance to use them! We were so tired by the end of our sightseeing-filled days!)
There were also outdoor lounging and seating areas, some with firepits, that Ken and I definitely took time to enjoy during our stay (Although apparently I was enjoying the firepit so much that I didn’t take any photos when we were sitting around it!).
There were a few outdoor kitchen and bar-type areas, but I never saw them open. I’m guessing that’s because we were there at an off-peak time of year?
And watch out for wildlife! (We never actually saw any of these things, but we appreciated the signs!)
Entrance and Lobby Area of Hacienda del Sol
The entrance to the Hacienda del Sol is off a relatively quiet road, and it is well-marked.
There is a parking area, followed by a small “traffic circle” where you can unload your bags with the bellhop, utilize valet if desired (we did not), and walk to the registration and check-in area.
The check-in area is in this building, just past the main archway-type entrance.
Indoor Common Areas at Hacienda del Sol
There were some restaurants and bars at Hacienda del Sol too, and we ate at one on our first night there. It was fine, but nothing too memorable.
Remaining Miscellaneous Photos
And just because I want to share other photos from the hotel that might not fit in any of the above categories, I leave them here …
Needless to say, I highly recommend this hotel if you’re looking for an amazing place to stay in the Tucson area.
Have you been to any hotels recently that have just completely blown you away?