Talking Stick Resort Rating: 4.0 Pearls
Scottsdale, Arizona, United States

Oyster Review Summary

Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators

Pros

  • Many entertainment options including gambling, live shows, and golf
  • Spring training baseball games at the Salt River Fields at Talking Stick
  • Free covered valet parking, self-parking, and Wi-Fi
  • Free premium movie channels on 42-inch flat-screen TVs
  • Great views from The Orange Sky restaurant and The Spa
  • 10-minute drive to Scottsdale Old Town

Cons

  • Guests must walk through the smoky casino to access rooms
  • Some complaints of subpar service
  • Pool feels isolated

Bottom Line

Talking Stick Resort is a luxury high-rise offering the Vegas experience -- a big casino, two golf courses, three pools, live music, restaurants, a nightclub and theater -- on the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Reservation near Scottsdale. Rooms are stylish and modern. But you’ll need to walk through the smoky casino to reach your room, unlike at the Radisson Ft. McDowell Resort, where the casino and hotel buildings are separate.

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 Scene

An upscale casino resort with desert views

The Talking Stick is a four-pearl, 15-floor, 497-room casino resort that opened in fall 2010 on the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Reservation. Rooms are spacious and contemporary, with a mix of Southwestern style and modern chic. The Spa and Orange Sky restaurant are likewise elegant.

However, the main pool and Jacuzzi area behind the resort, while spacious, is plainly designed and feels isolated -- be prepared for a several-minute walk from the front entrance to reach it. The pool at the nearby Scottsdale Conference Resort, by comparison, is smaller but feels much livelier due to its central location.

 Location

On an Indian reservation just east of Scottsdale

The Talking Stick is located on the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Reservation, which is adjacent to Scottsdale, just east of the city off the 101 Freeway. The Talking Stick is isolated (surrounded largely by desert), so a vehicle is necessary to explore beyond the resort. However, Old Town Scottsdale is only 10 minutes away, and so are shopping areas such as Scottsdale Waterfront and Fashion Square. Shuttle service is not offered.

  • 5-minute drive to Salt River Fields at Talking Stick for Diamondbacks spring training baseball games
  • 10-minute drive to Old Town Scottsdale
  • 10-minute drive to Fashion Square shopping mall and Scottsdale Waterfront
  • 10-minute drive to the Scottsdale Center for the Arts
  • 10-minute drive to Scottsdale’s trendiest nightclubs
  • 20-minute drive to McDowell Mountain Preserve, a popular hiking area
  • 20-minute drive to Scottsdale Airport
  • 20-minute drive to Sky Harbor International Airport

 Rooms

Modern and stylish with comfortable beds and up-to-date tech features

The Deluxe King
The Deluxe King

The room decor blends contemporary style with Southwestern flair (think: clean lines and dark wood furniture, but locally-inspired patterns on the red bed throws). Sleek marble-tiled bathrooms have glass showers with rain showerheads and separate soaking tubs. The latest tech features are all here, and so are great views of the surrounding desert (best views are from the "golf" side of the resort, not the "city" side).

All rooms include:

  • 42-inch flat-screen HDTV with interface for using TV as computer monitor
  • Premium movie channels
  • iPod docking alarm clock
  • Free Wi-Fi and wired Internet
  • Bathrobe
  • Coffeemaker
  • Empty mini-fridge
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Hairdryer
  • Rain showerhead
  • Safe Room types:
  • Deluxe King or Deluxe Two Queen: 500 square feet; king or two queen beds; king and two queen rooms can be reserved together with a connecting suite
  • Signature King or Signature Two Queen: 500 square feet; king or two queen beds; first or second floor with patio or balcony
  • Executive King: 500 square feet; king bed; better views
  • Club King or Club Two Queen: 500 square feet; king or two queen beds; located on the private 12th and 13th floors; better views
  • Two-Bay Suite: 1,000 square feet; king bed; separate living room; 1.5 baths; large balcony or patio accessible by both bedroom and living room
  • Three-Bay Suite: 1,500 square feet; king bed; separate living room; two baths with bathtub; wet bar; Murphy bed; large balcony or patio accessible by both bedroom and living room

 Features

Casino, two 18-hole golf courses, and many restaurants and lounges

The Spa
The Spa
  • 240,000-square-foot property including over 900 slot machines and smoke-free poker room
  • Two 18-hole golf courses
  • The Showroom is a 650-seat theater
  • The Pool at Talking Stick Resort Stage offers poolside concerts
  • Four lounges including Shadows Cigar and Martini Bar, and The Degree 270 nightclub on the 14th floor
  • Heated pool and Jacuzzi with cabanas and lounge chairs; location feels isolated
  • Lounge pool with immersed lounge chairs adjacent to main pool
  • The Spa, a 13,000-square-foot spa on the 14th floor that includes a large balcony
  • Salon, barber shop, and shoe shine
  • Car rental service
  • Cultural Center with Native American art and history on display
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • 24-hour: fitness center, business center, and concierge
  • Free covered valet or self-parking
  • Laundry facilities
  • 100,000 square feet of meeting space
  • No resort fee

 Food

Eight restaurants, including the open-air Orange Sky, with great mountain views

Orange Sky Restaurant
Orange Sky Restaurant

Talking Stick has a whopping eight restaurants. The resort’s top dining experience is the Orange Sky, located on the 15th floor, an open-air restaurant with views of the surrounding mountains.

  • Orange Sky serves American cuisine for dinner. Menu items include Pan Roasted Scallops ($30) and Char-Broiled Rib-Eye Steak ($38). Entrees range from $24 to $65.
  • Wandering Horse Buffet serves a variety of international foods in a buffet setting. Prices range from $10 for breakfast to $25 for weekend dinner.
  • Blue Coyote Cafe is open 24 hours and serves American and Asian food. Prices range from $8 (French Toast) to $27 (Filet Mignon).
  • Black Fig Coffee and Bistro is open 24 hours. Menu items include soups, salads, pizzas, and sandwiches.
  • Ocean Trail serves seafood and specializes in traditional Creole cuisine. Menu items include the Louisiana Gumbo (prices vary). Entrees range from $12 to $19.
  • 24-hour room service
  • Many dining options are available in nearby Scottsdale

 Bottom Line

Talking Stick Resort is a luxury high-rise offering the Vegas experience -- a big casino, two golf courses, three pools, live music, restaurants, a nightclub and theater -- on the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Reservation near Scottsdale. Rooms are stylish and modern. But you’ll need to walk through the smoky casino to reach your room, unlike at the Radisson Ft. McDowell Resort, where the casino and hotel buildings are separate.

Things You Should Know About Talking Stick Resort

Address

  • 9800 E. Indian Bend Rd., Scottsdale, AZ, 85256, US

Room Types

  • 2-Bay Suite
  • 3-Bay Suite
  • Club Room
  • Deluxe Room
  • Executive King Room
  • Signature Room

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Hotel Features

Number of Rooms: 497
Pool: Yes
Fitness Center: Yes
Spa: Yes
Internet: Yes
Cribs: Yes
Casino: Yes
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Hotel Information

Location: Scottsdale, Arizona
Address: 9800 E. Indian Bend Rd., Scottsdale, AZ, 85256, US
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