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History

Opened in 1976 as the Scottsdale Conference Center, the Scottsdale Resort at McCormick Ranch was the first conference resort in the country. Our brilliant facility is found in the master‐planned residential community of McCormick Ranch, recognized for its stunning lakes, greenbelts and golf courses. 

Nestled between the dramatic beauty of the pristine Sonoran Desert and the burgeoning shopping, restaurant, gallery and club scene of Scottsdale and nearby Phoenix, the resort was designed for anyone desiring hotels with a tranquil ambiance beneficial to conducting business. Since its inception, the Scottsdale Resort has provided the very best in meeting facilities, weddings, special events, and guest amenities surrounded by 36 holes of championship golf.

The Scottsdale Resort at McCormick Ranch reopened on Sept. 8, 2015, after completing a massive renovation that transformed the resort and revitalized our amenities. As part of our $10 million transformation, the resort boasts two restaurants and a bar, a transformed main pool, significant outdoor meeting and event space, enhanced guest rooms, and a more open, welcoming feel throughout The Scottsdale.

Following the 2015 renovation many of the resorts new spaces were named in keeping with the rich history of the Resort and the Scottsdale area.

BAR SIX40

In the early to mid 1880's, U.S. Army Chaplain, Winfield Scott, visited the Salt River Valley and was impressed with the region, and its potential for agriculture. Returning in 1888 with his wife, Helen, he purchased 640 acres for the paltry sum of $3.50 an acre for a stretch of land that is currently bound by Scottsdale Road to the West, Hayden Road to the East, and Indian School to the South. 

Winfield and his brother, George Washington Scott, became the first residents of the town, which was then known as Orangedale, due to the large citrus groves planted by the Scott brothers, who were known as adept farmers, capable of cultivating citrus fruits, figs, potatoes, peanuts and almonds in the desert town. Many of the community's original settlers, recruited by Scott from the East and Midwest, were educated and had an appreciation for cultural activities. The town's name was changed to Scottsdale in 1894, after its founder. 

Bar SIX40 is named in honor of those first 640 acres that were to become what is now modern Scottsdale AZ.

McCormick Building and Paradise Park Lawn

In 1921, the Jolly family built a ranch and home on 160 acres located at what is today the corner of Scottsdale and Indian Bend roads. This was purchased by Merle Cheney in 1942, who not long afterwards sold it Fowler and Anne McCormick. Between 1942 and 1954, Anne and Fowler had begun to purchase parcels of land all around the Jolly/Cheney parcel. The ranch was primarily used as a winter home by the McCormicks, as they admired the warmer climate.

Fowler was not a stranger to money. His maternal grandfather was Nelson D. Rockefeller, while his paternal grandfather was Cyrus McCormick, the inventor of the mechanical reaper, which would form the foundation for the company later known as International Harvester. Fowler would later go on to be President and Chairman of the Board for International Harvester. 

Anne McCormick was a lover of Arabian horses. In the mid-1950s, she devoted 150 acres of the northern part of her ranch near what is today the intersection of Shea Boulevard and Pima Road as an equestrian center devoted to Arabian horses, and called it Paradise Park. The Arabian Horse Association of Arizona held their annual show at Paradise Park from 1956 (its second year) through 1968, when it was moved to Westworld. The Arizona Arabian Horse Show was the first of its kind dedicated to Arabian horses.

After Anne McCormick's death in 1969, a portion of the McCormick's land, about 4,236 acres, was sold to Kaiser-Aetna in the summer of 1970 for a purchase price of $12.1 million. The development was incorporated in 1972, and according to real estate websites for the area, it has two championship 18-hole golf courses (McCormick Ranch Golf Club's Palm Course and Pine Course), more than 25 miles of bicycle paths, parks, public tennis courts, and 130 acres of man-made lakes (7 lakes total). 

Stillman Building

Guy Stillman, the son of James Stillman and Anne Urquhart Potter, was born in New York, New York on November 7, 1918.

His father, James Stillman (left), was the president of National City Bank of New York (now Citibank). His mother and father divorced and Anne eventually remarried a Mr. Fowler McCormick whom was the last remaining grandson of John D. Rockefeller. Fowler's Grandfather was Cyrus McCormick, the inventor of the Reaper, which changed forever the way the world harvested grain. After graduating from Princeton, Fowler McCormick went on to become the Chairman of the Board at International Harvester.

In 1967, the Fowler McCormick's donated 100 acres of McCormick Ranch to the City of Scottsdale stipulating that it be used as a park for all to enjoy. At that time the land value was $1 million. Their hope was that the gift would encourage others to give as well as to make Scottsdale a better place to live for succeeding generations. The area circled in red on the map was known as "South Ranch".

The original location of the park was to be on 50 acres on the west side of Scottsdale Road. Complaints arose from the town of Paradise Valley so, to avoid difficulty, it was agreed to move across the street, wholly within, Scottsdale city limits. 

Bennie’s Courtyard

Premiere architect Bennie M. Gonzales of Scottsdale provided the architectural design and décor for the original Scottsdale Conference Center and Resort Hotel when it originally opened September 4th, 1976. Through his world- renowned expertise, the Scottsdale Conference Center and Resort Hotel captures the rich and rustic heritage of the Southwest with native building materials, mission tile, wood-beamed ceilings, paintings and wall hangings and an abundance of live plants and trees. A hand-crafted Spanish tile water fountain graces the main drive and entrance ellipse.

Gonzales also designed Scottsdale City Hall, Scottsdale Center for the Arts, Public Library and The Boulders Resort.


Winfield & Helen Winfield & Helen Scott - Scottsdale Founders
Paradise Park The Arizona Arabian Horse Show at Paradise Park
Bennie Gonzales Bennie Gonzales - Scottsdale Resort Architect, 1976
True To Our Place, Diverse By Design

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