The city of Prescott, Arizona, has a lot of good things going for it, and the Yavapai-Prescott Indian Tribe owns a big part of that positive action. Billed as “Everybody’s Hometown,” Prescott, a Mile High City that was the first Territorial Capital of Arizona, is nestled in the midst of deeply-dissected mountain ranges that lead to the Mogollon Rim at the boundary of the Colorado Plateau --- which is to say that the natural surroundings in the nation’s largest continuous forest of Ponderosa pines are beautiful.
No big surprise then that the tribe has made some wise moves in developing its 1,414 reservation acres, starting with it’s initial motto --- “From Humble Beginnings Come Great Things” --- to what the Center for American Indian Economic Development today notes: “The tribal enterprises serve as some of the areas largest employers with community employment compensations totaling over $9 million annually.”
Chief among these revenue generators are the 6-acre Prescott Resort and Conference Center and its adjacent Bucky’s Casino to a second nearby gaming outlet, the Yavapai Bingo and Gaming Center. Bucky’s offers up 300 slot machines as well as poker, blackjack, and bingo while the Gaming Center just down the hill adds another 175 slots, more blackjack, and video poker capabilities.
Add to the hospitality/gaming options, some major commercial developments that have helped transform a former mining/ranching economy to a tourism/retail sales and service marketplace. These include a 250-acre Frontier Village Shopping Center with over a million square feet for lease to the 12-acre Sundog Industrial Park with planned expansion to 60 acres.
The Resort was built by Grace Hospitality in 1987 (then sold to the tribe who turned around and made Grace its third party managers). “Grace originally owned the bricks and mortar of the entire destination,” says long-time employee Jody Harwood, “and for several years the tribe leased the casino. Now the tribe owns and operates Bucky’s Casino, while they own, but we contract manage, the Resort.”
All 160 rooms in the 5-story facility were recently renovated in a style that embellishes the culture and spirit of the Yavapai Prescott tribe, a three year project that just concluded, according to Richard Emmerling, National Sales Manager for Grace Hospitality. “Resting on a hilltop referred to as ‘The Top of the Rock,’ Prescott Resort is the choice hotel for those seeking a luxurious getaway in Northern Arizona,” he says.
Deluxe guest rooms and suites come with different sleeping options that include quality linens, comforters, and down blankets. Deluxe guest rooms have private balconies with mountain or city views as well as work desks for visitors who can’t leave business at home. Suites incorporate separate parlor areas with flat-screen TVs and a sleeper sofa.
Whether guests arrive for a business meeting or a getaway weekend, there are a variety of amenities from gift shop and gallery to gym, pool, and Jacuzzi and a variety of special programs like a Relaxation or Sweetheart Package to a Casino and/or Golf Package. Two museums, the Smoki Museum and the Phippen Museum of Western Art, display Native American artifacts from the region as well as traveling exhibitions of a broad variety of Western Art.
The resort Conference Center offers 16,000 square feet of banquet or catering space that will hold crowds of up to 500 and staff has done it all from formal black tie parties to business luncheons to major theatrical-themed social events. There are 13 meeting rooms and plush conference suites for smaller events.
And no one goes thirsty or hungry. Promotional materials advise: “The Thumb Butte Room serves an exquisite array of selections morning, noon, and night (while) Eagle’s Nest Lounge offers spectacular views to enjoy live entertainment or watch sports events.”
Prescott, itself, is a city rich in history with its own Whiskey Row attractions or opportunities to explore in-town museums and antique shops.
Prescott Resort and Conference Center, 1500 Highway 69, Prescott, Arizona 86301
www.PrescottResort.com, (928) 776 1666
Prescott Resort reservations, (800) 967 4637
Bucky’s Casino, www.buckyscasino.com, (800) SLOTS-44, (928) 778 7909