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May 17, 2007 05:54 PM

Another Scottsdale Institution- Closing

Just read in the AZ Republic that the Marquesa Restaurant @ the Scottsdadale Fairmont Princess is closing.
It was always a place we enjoyed for special occaisions......the only 5 Diamond Rated Restaurant that was truely worth the rating.
They offred one of the best Brunches in the City.
IMarquesa was unique in it's Catalan inspired cuisine and the room was beautiful.......
I hope the Fairmont Princess doesn't go the corporate route as Camelback INN....and others.
Does anyone know what the space will become?

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  1. Just saw this, too. I hope Fairmont doesn't give us another steakhouse or a celebrity-chef-phoning-it-in restaurant.

      1. re: Molto E

        Are you serious?
        How will that fare w/ the Grill @ the TPC?
        Or are they changing that Concept as well?

        1. re: ciaogal

          I had heard that Mina was doing at steak place at the Princess a couple of weeks ago and had not thought much about it until todays' story. Mina has restaurants in Atlantic City, Las Vegas and California so if he does a Phoenix spot then his presence here will be limited.

        2. re: Molto E

          That leads to these questions:

          1) Where will Mina spend his time? Here or Vegas? Or will he be another Emeril and be an absent landlord at one or the other?

          2) Will he alter his menu prices?

          12 oz of skirt steak for $36.00 in Phoenix?

          1. re: Molto E

            I don't know if Molto E's comment is facetious or serious, but it does make me think: What seems to be happening here is the Las-Vegasification of the established Scottsdale / Paradise Valley / Phoenix resorts. These resorts probably see Vegas as their greatest competitive threat and are trying to compete with Vegas on Vegas terms with restaurants like BLT Steak. The wisdom of that strategy seems dubious. Most people visit Las Vegas for a gambling / dining / entertaiment experience that is completely divorced from the desert context of the city. Visitors to this region, however, seem to be looking for a more natural experience -- even if it's only a round or two of golf. With that would come, I think / hope, a little more interest in regional cuisine, but maybe that's just wishful thinking on my part. In any case, any attempt to out-Vegas Vegas will fail since no matter how good the restaurants are, the absence of casino gambling and a 24-hour lifestyle will always differentiate the Phoenix area from Vegas.

            1. re: silverbear

              The sad thing is that something like Stripsteak's arrival does more harm to the Phoenix dining scene than the resignation of Bradford Thompson at Mary Elaine's.

                1. re: Seth Chadwick

                  As a non-Phoenix resident, my observation is that even when I stay at the Phoenician, the avarage traveler, families at the pool and even businessmen are not looking for a meal at a restaurant like Mary Elaine's or any of the other fine dining places you mention. They will, unfortunately patronize a place that a cleb chef opens...even if the chance of him being there is marginal

                  1. re: nyfoodjoe

                    You are correct, which makes the situation even worse. Mina will do well here, but, I can't see Stripsteak doing much past its initial peak at opening.

                    I wonder what Mina will do with 6 oz. cuts of Kobe beef for $195 (according to the menu link I listed above) when its 118 F degrees and the snowbirds are all back home in other lands. As silverbear said, Phoenix is not Vegas. We don't have the year round drawing power that Vegas does because of its 24-hour lifestyle, gambling, etc.

                    But even that draw is tempered by reality. If you read the comments by our friends up in Vegas, the places that get recommended the most are Lotus of Siam and Rosemary's, two great restaurants not on the Strip nor charging skyhigh prices for a cut of beef.

                    Of course, I should never underestimate the power of celeb, but I can always dream.

                2. re: silverbear


                  This is what was mentioned to me a couple of weeks ago, I am not kidding around. It would not surprise me though as right now the two popular choices are steak and I will ask about this tomorrow.

                  Molto E

                  1. re: Molto E

                    Today's Republic also says that VU @ The Hyatt Gainey Ranch has also closed....I am soooo confused.
                    I hope someone can explain what's going on in this town....

                    The Princess is supposed to announce their plans for Marquesa today!


                    1. re: ciaogal

                      Vu closed because the Hyatt is revamping their Italian concept and the Breakfast, Lunch Dinner restaurant at the hotel. The only restaurant space that was available for guests during the re-model period was the Vu so they closed it during this period to accomodate the guests.

                      1. re: Molto E

                        Farewell Marquesa :(

                        That was the first "big girl/big ticket" dinner I took my family to when I started making some money. We had such a great time.

                        And the brunch....I need to tell my mother-in-law about this. She's been talking about going for a few months.

                        1. re: mamamia

                          This is a major bummer. I like Vegas but in Vegas. Not here!

              1. No word on the new restaurant, but a little more detail about the decision to close the Marquesa: