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Premier upscale shopping in the Cambelback corridor   by Andrew Regan

As the sixth largest city in the United States, Phoenix has always been a major destination for both Americans and foreign tourists. For starters, it is the largest state capital in the country; at over 3 million people, its population is even larger than Washington D.C.. Phoenix is also home to some of the best entertainment in the southwest: in the Navajo language, it is known as Hoodzo, often translated in a modern context as 'this place is hot'. But perhaps most excitingly, it is home to one of the most important landmarks of America's favourite passtimes: shopping.

The famous Biltmore Fashion Park is perhaps the most conveniently located shopping center in Arizona: at the confluence of Scottsdale and Paradise Valley, it is an essential stop-off site for all tourists in the area. It is also one of America's premier luxury shopping destinations, boasting more than seventy boutiques and stores, including: Cartier, Escada, Gucci, Ralph Lauren, and Apple Computers, as well as a variety of shops completely unique to Phoenix. It possesses a diverse and high quality range of restaurants, including The Cheesecake Factory, California Pizza Kitchen and Steamer's Genuine Seafood.

As one of the south-west's most exclusive shopping destinations, the Biltmore Fashion Park has always tried to offer its guests a distinctive shopping experience: for instance, every week it hosts a live jazz night, as well as live ESPN broadcasts and regular children's events. It also offers its customers an electronic service that provides all registered customers with a weekly newsletter, keeping them up to date with all the latest deals and exclusive offers. By registering for specific stores and restaurants, customers will receive a weekly bulletin that allows them to view special offers before they decide to shop. It also offers gift-guide and gift-reminder services as well as a special section for out of town visitors.

However, after more than forty years at the center of entertainment and fashion in Arizona, 2006 saw the emergence of a plan for redevelopment. At the center of this is a new architectural design, which will be characterised by distinctive open outdoor spaces and a redesigned pedestrian area, which aims to transform its existing streetscape and ease its flow of traffic. These plans seem to promise an even better service from one of America's premier shopping destinations. The beauty of Biltmore Fashion Park is that a walk through its fantastic gardens, landscaped sidewalks and attractive fountains will be enough to restore your sanity after a hectic day's shopping; these gardens alone are worth a visit, even if shopping is not on your agenda. A nearby attraction is the legendary Waldorf Astoria Arizona Biltmore Resort and Spa. Often considered to be one of the most spectacular of its kind in the world, is it sometimes referred to as "the jewel in the desert" and has been a favourite destination of a variety of celebrities, from Fred Astaire to Michael J Fox, and every American president since its opening since 1929.

About the Author

Andrew Regan is an online journalist who enjoys socialising at his local Edinburgh cricket club.

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