From spring sports to Arizona desert blooms, here are six reasons to get on a plane this month.
New desert hotels in and around Scottsdale
Consider staying at one of two new resorts to make the most of the spring bloom in the desert.
Mountain Shadows (formerly the Marriot Mountain Shadows Resort built in 1959) opens in March in the town of Paradise Valley, just outside Scottsdale. Located just below Camelback Mountain, this resort features an 18-hole golf course and two outdoor pools. Look out to the flowering cacti from the patio at Hearth ’61, the hotel’s restaurant and bar. Or, experience the resort’s peaceful surroundings on your own on two hiking trails accessible from the hotel.
Andaz Scottsdale Resort & Spa, which opened in Scottsdale in December, is a mid-century modern masterpiece. Each bungalow-style guest room features artworks produced on a nearby artists’ compound as well as a private terrace with a mountain view. Hotel amenities include a full-service spa and salon and three outdoor pools. There are also plenty of desert trails nearby at Pinnacle Peak, Camelback Mountain, the McDowell Sonoran Preserve and the Desert Botanical Garden.
Art Souterrain in Montreal
From March 4 to 26, take a free, self-guided, contemporary visual-arts tour of Montreal’s Underground City. This subterranean network of interconnected buildings includes shops, galleries, hotels, restaurants and bars. The only event of its kind in North America, Art Souterrain is part of the Nuit Blanche arts festival and features the works of more than 60 Quebecois, Canadian and international artists. Look for signs along the six-kilometre exhibition trail to guide you through installations, photographs, live performances and interactive video displays that reflect this year’s theme, “Play and Distraction.” New this year, reserve a “focus visit” led by a curator for just $10.
Spring Training in Florida and Arizona
Sunnier days mean baseball season is almost here, which also means spring training is on from now until the end of March. To catch these pre-season exhibition games, head south to Florida and Arizona. Watch teams such as the Toronto Blue Jays and Chicago Cubs play ball for as little as US$14.
Watch March Madness at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas
Get ready for March Madness, college basketball’s biggest tournament, Vegas style. During Hoops & Hops on March 16 and 17, the Belmont Ballroom at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas will be transformed into a 40,000-square-foot basketball hub and sports lounge. Watch the games live on 12 stadium-style screens, place your bets at an on-site sports book, practice your free throw on a regulation hoop, play free arcade games and sip beer at the open bar. Stadium-style foods such as chicken wings and Philly cheesesteak hoagies will be available for purchase.
New foodie experiences in Vancouver
If you’re in Vancouver with a group, consider the new Long Table Canadian Supper packages at Timber for just $30 per person. Book anytime (minimum 15 people) to enjoy family-style Canadian comfort food like elk tourtiere and bannock with maple butter, play a game of cribbage, dress up at the Canadian-themed photo booth and make s’mores around a campfire.
Combine a little sightseeing with your meal on Off The Eaten Track’s new culinary walking tour, “Sip, Savour, Shop on Main Street.” Visit eight shops along Vancouver’s most popular street, sample fish tacos and Brazilian pastry, sip local kombucha, learn to make buttons at a stationary shop and enjoy a private honey tasting.
JUNO Week in Ottawa
This year, the JUNO Awards will be held in Ottawa on April 2 in honour of Canada’s 150th anniversary. Tickets to the awards show are on sale now, but tons of musical programming will be presented at Capital Hill and throughout the city during JUNO Week, March 27 to April 2. Expect to see local talent busking in the streets. Check out live concerts and participate in workshops.