fbpx

Scottsdale Architecture Spotlight: Hotel Valley Ho

Arizona, and particularly Scottsdale, has long been a hotspot for architectural innovation, blending the region’s natural beauty with groundbreaking design. From Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin West to Paolo Soleri’s Acosanti, the state is home to a variety of remarkable structures that push the boundaries of architectural thought. One standout example is the iconic Hotel Valley Ho, a mid-century modern masterpiece nestled in the heart of Scottsdale. Today, we’re exploring the hotel’s fascinating history, stunning architectural features and commitment to preservation and sustainability. 

Nestled in the heart of Scottsdale, the Hotel Valley Ho opened its doors in 1956. The hotel was designed by Edward L. Varney, a prominent mid-century modern architect and a student of Frank Lloyd Wright, the hotel sought to combine the glamor of Hollywood with the natural beauty of Arizona. Over the years, the Hotel Valley Ho has hosted numerous celebrities and undergone multiple renovations to maintain its charm and relevance. 

The Hotel Valley Ho stands as a shining example of mid-century modern architecture. Its sleek, minimalist design is characterized by clean lines, flat planes, and expansive glass walls that seamlessly integrate indoor and outdoor spaces. The hotel’s iconic cantilevered roof lines and butterfly roofs give it a futuristic appeal while providing shape and protection from the elements. 

The rooms and pool at Hotel Valley Ho. Photo: C.C. Chapman, 2011, Flickr Creative Commons CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0 Deed

One of the most striking features of the Hotel Valley Ho is its use of materials, including concrete, steel, and native Arizona stone, which all pay homage to the state’s desert landscape. Additionally, the interior boasts vibrant colors, geometric patterns, and custom-designed furnishings that embody the essence of mid-century modern design. 

Beyond its architectural prowess, The Hotel Valley Ho offers luxurious amenities to cater to every guest’s needs. The property is home to two separate pools: The OH Pool, which features a lively atmosphere complete with a bar and cabana, and the more serene OHasis Pool, perfect for relaxation. Guests can also enjoy the award-winning VH Spa, a state-of-the-art fitness center, and exceptional dining options, including the ZuZu restaurant, which serves inventive American cuisine. The hotel’s central location provides easy access to Scottsdale’s vibrant art galleries, shopping and outdoor activities. 

Hotel Valley Ho lobby. Photo: C.C. Chapman, 2011, Flickr Creative Commons CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0 Deed

In addition to its luxurious accommodations, the Hotel Valley Ho has demonstrated a commitment to preservation and sustainability over the years. A comprehensive restoration project in 2005 revitalized the hotel’s historic features and expanded its footprint. Modern amenities and sustainable practices, such as energy-efficient LED lighting, solar panels for heating pool water and a robust recycling program have been incorporated throughout the property. This commitment ensures that future generations can experience the magic of this mid-century modern masterpiece. 

The Hotel Valley Ho truly offers an unforgettable experience, seamlessly blending luxury, history and sustainability. Its timeless design and dedication to preserving its heritage make it a must-visit destination for architecture enthusiasts and travelers alike.

Architectural Treasures of Phoenix & Scottsdale

From Taliesin West to Arcosanti, Arizona is filled with some of the country’s most stunning architecture. However, many people don’t realize that there are plenty of local architecture gems that often go unrecognized, even closer to the Scottsdale area. Forever inspired by the architecture surrounding us, we’ve been out and about to spotlight a few of the many architectural treasures found around Phoenix and Scottsdale.

Tovrea Castle at Carraro Heights

Built from 1929 to 1931, Tovrea Castle is one of Phoenix’s most recognizable landmarks. The castle is named after the structure’s architect, Alessio Carraro, and former owner, Della Tovrea. Thanks to its unique Italianate Architectural Style, the building is known locally as the “Wedding Cake Castle”. Its construction includes a four-tier fashion, with each level utilizing materials such as granite block, pine wood and stucco. 

Intricate details, including parapets on each tier’s roof, Art Deco lighting and over 5,000 cacti, add to the castle’s extravagant character. Originally planned as a centerpiece for a destination hotel, the castle instead became a private residence after its completion and was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1996. Thankfully today, even if you don’t tour the castle yourself, the stunning building is easily viewable to any passer-by thanks to its grand design.

Gammage Memorial Auditorium

Gammage Memorial Auditorium

Acting as Arizona State University’s performing arts center for nearly 60 years, Gammage Memorial Auditorium stands as one of Arizona’s most dramatic architectural works and one of the largest exhibitors of performing arts for universities around the world. Considered one of Frank Lloyd Wright’s last commissions, the structure stands 80 feet high and measures 300 by 250 feet. Wright based his design on a Baghdadi opera house that he had previously conceptualized for the city but never built. 

Twin arch buttress walkways jut from the north and east sides of the auditorium while fifty rose-colored, “marblecrete” columns encompass the exterior, supporting the circular roof. Besides the round roof, the theme of circles are found nearly everywhere throughout the interlocking circular arcs of the building. Its shapes, colors, textures and materials all pay tribute to the surrounding Arizona landscape, and it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1985. 

Rosson House Museum

Rosson House Museum at Heritage Square

More than 125 years old, Phoenix’s Rosson House shares a story of Arizona’s territorial past. Designed by San Francisco architect A.P. Petit, the 1895 home mainly displays a Queen Anne Victorian style. However, unique French and Chinese architectural elements are found throughout the home. Because of the home’s style, Petit utilized fired brick and wood for the home, shifting from the standard building material of the time and location, adobe brick. 

Standout design elements of the house include the Victorian Era gold-infused ruby glass windows, a Chinese-inspired half-moon arch on its veranda and a French-inspired octagonal turret at its peak. After being added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1971, the historic house, now owned by the City of Phoenix, is a museum and remains a popular destination for architecture lovers today. 

There’s no better way to celebrate the robust and compelling architecture of Phoenix and Scottsdale than by getting out and discovering the treasures yourself. Stay tuned as we continue to explore more of our community’s remarkable art and architecture!

person name goes here

Maintenance Supervisor

Glencoe, IL





    Acceptable file types: *.pdf | *.txt | *.doc, max-size: 2Mb