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Canyon Villas or Westin kierland?

m61376

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We're looking for a December trip, hoping for a flexchange trade. Which location/resort do people prefer and why? Any other suggestions in the area which we should also consider?

How is the weather there that time of year? Things to see/do? We love to sightsee, shopping is always a plus ;) , but we're not golfers. Is a day trip to the Grand Canyon practical or is it too far?

Since it is kinda last minute and things have been hectic around here, I'd appreciate any input you might offer for us to try to plan something last minute (and hopefully I will have some availability).

Thanks!!
 

erm

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Although both properties are very nice and I'm sure you'd be happy at either one, I prefer Westin Kierland Villas. It has nicer amenities, landscaping and proximity to shopping and restaurants. Both have access to the amenities of the sister hotel on property. Not sure what the weather will be like, but check historical data on weather.com. We have been twice at the end of October and twice mid April and had good weather.
 

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we go to Phoenix most December and will do so again this year in mid December. The weather for us Canadians is great. It is mostly sunny and temp. in 60s during the day time and have often experienced temp. in 70s.
We normally stay at the Canyon Villas. The adjacent JW Dessert Ridge is a great resort to which we have access during our stay. There is a small mall within 5 minute walk with a few restaurants and shops and larger malls are within a 15 minutes drive...
As the previous post said, you can not go wrong with either of the resorts. We have stayed at the Westin also but we for some reason prefer the Canyon Villas..
It has been a looooong time since we did Grand Canyon so do not remember the driving times etc. however Sedona is definitely doable on a day trip.
Hope you are able to find a unit during flexchange. You may also want to keep an eye on getaways..good luck.
 

EKniager

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Although both facilities are quite nice, I like the location of Kierland better. Weather could get cold at night. wunderground.com has historical daily highs and lows so you can check your dates for the last 3-5 years and draw some conclusions. We have been to AZ >20x and never been to the Grand Canyon, but I do not think it is a comfortable day trip. Then again, it depends on how long you want to spend there. I don't think you can go wrong with either resort.
 

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Just to note: If you are going to get a 1br unit, be aware that Westin Keirland has both the full size 1-br units and the smaller 1-br units that are in lieu of a studio.

We had a 2-br unit with both sides. If I had just the smaller side, I wouldn't have liked it if I was expecting a full size 1-br. If I was expecting a studio, I would love it.
 

Enrico

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The studio portion of the 2-bedroom at Kierland is maybe the nicest I have ever stayed in....very roomy, quality throughout.
 

m61376

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Was about to book a unit but am a little wary of the weather in early December- will it be too cold to enjoy ourselves?
 

dougp26364

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Was about to book a unit but am a little wary of the weather in early December- will it be too cold to enjoy ourselves?

We were at Westin Kierland in January. While it might have been a little cool for us to enjoy laying out by the pool, we considered the weather quite lovely. The day temps are plenty warm enough and it cools down enough to be able to sit by a fire pit and enjoy the evening.

Click the link below to see a photo album from our Westin Kierland trip in 2008.

 

dvc_john

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The studio portion of the 2-bedroom at Kierland is maybe the nicest I have ever stayed in....very roomy, quality throughout.
I agree, IF you are expecting a studio.
However, if you are expecting/exchanging for/paying for a 1-br, and get the small side, then not so much.
 

LAX Mom

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I've only been to Phoeniz/Scottsdale once in Dec. We stayed at the Fours Seasons and loved it! We visited both the Marriott Canyon Villas & Westin Kierland and were impressed with both properties.

However we had a lot of rain the week we were there. It must have rained half the days during the week. We still had a wonderful time, but it was definitely cooler & wetter than I was expecting.
 

cgeidl

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We stay every December

Weather is always good during the Day but cools down fast. Prefer the westin
And the location and units. Grand Canyon much too far for a day trip. We will arrive on the ninth and the big one bedroom is much better.Not enough natural light in the small unit. Always easy to get and this will be our 5th December in a row. We arrive the ninth and love Scottsdale and the Xmas decorations and festivities. Shop til ya drop.
 

m61376

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Weather is always good during the Day but cools down fast. Prefer the westin
And the location and units. Grand Canyon much too far for a day trip. We will arrive on the ninth and the big one bedroom is much better.Not enough natural light in the small unit. Always easy to get and this will be our 5th December in a row. We arrive the ninth and love Scottsdale and the Xmas decorations and festivities. Shop til ya drop.

What temperatures during the day can we expect-60's? 50's?

Doug- Are there fire pits scattered on the grounds? That's nice in the evenings.

I was initially hoping it was in the 60's and 70's, so am not sure if we'll regret going in December. 60's during the day is still real enjoyable, but 40's to 50's starts to get bit chilly for outdoor sightseeing. From looking at seasonal weather I'm not sure what to expect.
 

dougp26364

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What temperatures during the day can we expect-60's? 50's?

Doug- Are there fire pits scattered on the grounds? That's nice in the evenings.

I was initially hoping it was in the 60's and 70's, so am not sure if we'll regret going in December. 60's during the day is still real enjoyable, but 40's to 50's starts to get bit chilly for outdoor sightseeing. From looking at seasonal weather I'm not sure what to expect.

It's been since 2008 so my memory is a bit rusty. I recall one large fire pit on grounds and several large chiminea's (sp?) around the outdoor bar area.

Edit: in looking through my own photo album, I see there is one fire pit area and one large outdoor fireplace in addition to the large outdoor chiminea's around the outdoor bar.
 
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4Reliefnow

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If you are concerned about weather, I would nix the December trip. I was there in 2009 for Presidents Day in February and in 2007 for Christmas. It was around 60 daytime and 45-50 nighttime in December and it rained 3 days. February weather is 70-80 daytime and 60 at night.

I think Westin Kierland has nicer grounds and a central location. Central might mean busy to you it is on a main street and adjacent to a giant mall.
 

Gophesjo

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Weather in December

I go to Phoenix in December every year for about a week at Christmas. I am a competitive Masters Swimmer, training six of seven days every week, and almost every training pool in Phoenix is outside. I have not had to give up a training day that I can remember due to it being too cold. Sure, the pools are heated, but I still have to get to and back from the pool and the locker room, and it has not been too cold for me to do so.

What's sometimes (well oftentimes, actually) worse than the temperature is the wind. The deserts are windy and if it is cooler and wet, too, that can be miserable. Mostly, however, I much prefer Phoenix in December to where I live in the piedmont of North Carolina.
 

pwrshift

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Grand Canyon is a 4 hour drive...add in a minimum of 3 hours to view the GC from different points and you've had a very long day. Also, in Decenber to April there's probably snow there, sometimes lots of it. The first time we went it was the first week of May and left Phoenix at 105 to find it snowing at the GC...so at least pack warm clothes.

Sedona should be a little warmer than the GC. Not high season for anything there and the weather in Phoenix will be a lot cooler than you'd fine in Florida at that time of year.

If you can add a day on to your trip I suggest you drive up and stay a night in El Tovar on the south rim.

My pref would be the Westin...I own at Canyon Villas and love it and the JW, but have been there so many times I'm bored with it. There is a very large mall a few minutes south of CV called Desert Ridge mall with a ton of high end stores and restaurants. The JW has great fire pits off the lobby where they play music and serve drinks.
 

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My favorite resort in the Phoenix/Scottsdale area, by far, is Four Seasons Scottsdale. It's absolutely gorgeous with pueblo architecture and a spectacular setting in the desert foothills. It is so relaxing. I love that resort. Trades do happen for weeks in early December, so you might be able to get in.

If you can't get the Four Seasons, then either Marriott's Canyon Villas or the Westin Kierland are very good choices. The Marriott has larger grounds and feels more spacious and spread out. The Westin is slightly more upscale and definitely more urban/hip...albeit with smaller grounds.

I personally prefer the Marriott over the Westin, but it's really just a matter of personal taste. If the immediate area is important to you, the Kierland Commons shopping center near the Westin is much more upscale and more elegant than the Desert Ridge Marketplace near the Marriott.

As for the weather in early December, it varies. Three years ago, we had a sunny week with highs in the low 80s in December. Another year, it was much cooler with a couple of days of rain. Typically, it is nice during the day and chilly at night. It's certainly much warmer than where I live in Utah! I think it is worth the trip.

Steve
 

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We have also stayed at both. Both are very nice. Be aware that in the full 1 bdrm side there is no regular oven. We were very surprised. The microwave is different that a regular microwave. It worked well as a microwave, but not so well as an oven alternative. If you don't plan on cooking in the villa, this would not be a big deal, but if you like to cook, this would be a deal breaker for me. Again I'm not talking about the smaller 1 bdrm side, but the true full kitchen side.

We felt like the tall buildings at the Westin gave it an apartment complex feel. I thought we would prefer the Westin because of the contemporary feel and proximity to Kierland Commons, but I don't think I would stay there if I had the choice of both. It really is subjective to individual preferences.
 

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My favorite resort in the Phoenix/Scottsdale area, by far, is Four Seasons Scottsdale. It's absolutely gorgeous with pueblo architecture and a spectacular setting in the desert foothills. It is so relaxing. I love that resort. Trades do happen for weeks in early December, so you might be able to get in.

Steve

We stayed at the Four Seasons several years ago and scored another week coming up in mid Janauary. Looking forward to it. We also have two weeks at the Canyon Villas.....
 

EKniager

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What temperatures during the day can we expect-60's? 50's?

Doug- Are there fire pits scattered on the grounds? That's nice in the evenings.

I was initially hoping it was in the 60's and 70's, so am not sure if we'll regret going in December. 60's during the day is still real enjoyable, but 40's to 50's starts to get bit chilly for outdoor sightseeing. From looking at seasonal weather I'm not sure what to expect.

Here's data from December 2010-
http://www.wunderground.com/history/airport/KSDL/2010/12/1/MonthlyHistory.html
 

cgeidl

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Four Seasons is the best

We have eaten there but do not have a strong enought trader to get the Four Seasons but can always get the Kierland Westin.Have fun. The nights can get down into the high 30,s when the sky is clear but by 9:00 you can go out in shorts. Can chill down fast in the desert when the sun sets.
 

windje2000

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We're looking for a December trip

How is the weather there that time of year?

Thanks!!

Here's another site to check historical/projected weather and temperatures for US and many international locations

weatherspark

Play around with the tabs, buttons, etc.
 

irish

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we have stayed at both.. we like the westin kierland property better, however both are nice.
 

pwrshift

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We have also stayed at both. Both are very nice. Be aware that in the full 1 bdrm side there is no regular oven. We were very surprised. The microwave is different that a regular microwave. It worked well as a microwave, but not so well as an oven alternative. If you don't plan on cooking in the villa, this would not be a big deal, but if you like to cook, this would be a deal breaker for me. Again I'm not talking about the smaller 1 bdrm side, but the true full kitchen side.

We felt like the tall buildings at the Westin gave it an apartment complex feel. I thought we would prefer the Westin because of the contemporary feel and proximity to Kierland Commons, but I don't think I would stay there if I had the choice of both. It really is subjective to individual preferences.

If you're saying Canyon Villas doesn't have stoves with ovens, any time ive stayed there they did.
 
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