Highlights: Miraval Arizona Resort & Spa, Tuscon
For the most part, the Miraval Arizona Resort was a great trip. Decompressing, relaxing time, complimented by good service, food, and hotel activities. Highlights include the two dinner packages, and an amazing deal – two nights in all-inclusive Miraval for just 65,000 Hyatt points! Retail rates were ~$1100-$1300 per night, so this is an amazing deal. Compare that to the flagship Park Hyatt NYC at 30,000 points for a very nice hotel but no additional benefits! Unfortunately, our departure was marred by some significant issues but they were resolved.
My standard hotel reviews include a breakdown by the following topics. Feel free to skip to whichever section you find most interesting.
- Hotel Space / Ambiance
- Food & Drink
LOBBY & CHECK-IN
If you’re flying, arrange complimentary pick-up by Miraval vans who will give you a booklet of that week’s activities and excursions. What nice service! Our driver and other Miraval employee regaled us with stories of the Tuscon area, and how the area has changed over time, during our leisurely drive to the property.
We were welcomed to the property with an ice-cold fruity beverage, which was quite sweet but nonetheless delicious. Next we were directed to a table with our names and itinerary, before pointing us to the desk. Check-in with smooth, although there were no upgrades available, nor benefits for Hyatt Explorist. However, our attendant was kind enough to inform us about the property (and its no-cell-phone, please disconnect mantra) as well as show us quickly to our rooms.
Through the Hyatt program we got a “Dreamcatcher King” in the 300s villages, which was not too far from the main buildings. It’s a larger room, albeit I had to jury-rig a desk out of a long couch and round table. We did appreciate the spacious bathroom and water filter in the refrigerator – as you may imagine, the Arizona desert is quite hot and dry..
HOTEL SPACE / AMBIANCE
I did not realize – having only done research on what activities to do – that this is a predominately female clientele. I did see some men on their own, hanging out late at the Coyote Moon Bar & Lounge, but for the most part it was women in pairs or groups, or couples. Also, the guests are overwhelmingly white, which I did not notice until a bit into my stay. There is a room with a piano across from Palm Court that is available for guests.
Miraval has plenty of attractions available for guests, both paid and free, such as fitness classes, spa services, hikes, nutrition, yoga, physical activities like obstacle courses and ziplining, and many more. Great selection.
FOOD & DRINK
We ate quick juices or snacks at Palm Court, which were quite delicious. They are small portions, designed for on the go between or before hotel activities.
We also had breakfast at Cactus Flower Restaurant, which also serves lunch and dinner. Unfortunately, their offerings were pretty standard, nothing to crow about. They do have an interesting topic where they only serve one item at lunch which rotates each day, in addition to their standard buffet offerings.
Coyote Moon Bar & Lounge was most helpful in filling the hunger gaps, with their decently tasting burger – got it twice over the weekend! The pool also serves some additional items such as frozen fruit on a stick. Before 2pm, however, you’d have to eat elsewhere. However, Coyote is open late, serving food until 9pm or so I believe.
The lady enjoyed herself at the pool, and they have a full fitness center in addition to the spa available for guests. We availed ourselves of their 6am hike offering – I’ve never woken up that early for a hike before, but I know it’s something the lady would appreciate and enjoy. Hearing about the foliage of Tuscon was a very interesting experience. This hike, included in your stay, requires sign up, and you travel with two experienced guides, who provide additional equipment such as water packs, bottles, and climbing poles.
Miraval is an all-inclusive, no-tipping resort. Just my style! This weekend stay for 65,000 points was a fantastic, summer-only (June-August) deal that I missed last year, so I was determined to make it this year. At Miraval you also get complimentary airport transportation as mentioned, a $175 per person, per night resort credit, good for any of their activities or offerings. We chose to use it on their dining options. However, it does not include tax (which is additional, and not something that was mentioned previously).
I noticed an error in billing which I mentioned both at check-in and at check-out, as the Chef’s Table dinner is $195 when booking, but listed at $185 in their welcome packet. I was assured it would be fixed, but found it still at $195 at checkout.
They fixed it quickly, however they also gave me a couple sheet saying that I’d be responsible for $850 per person room charges, totaling $1,700. I spoke with a front desk manager who said it was an error and would be fixed. Poor taste when leaving.
Of course, I checked in a couple days, and it wasn’t fixed, with a ~$1,900 charge to my credit card. I called and emailed and they refunded me immediately, but this always makes me think about companies with customers who aren’t as financially diligent, who may get away with overcharging, so it was a very frustrating experience.
All in all, I’d certainly come back – especially with Southwest Companion Pass – during the summer. Perhaps next time I’ll check out Miraval Austin.
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