Husband + Wife Storytellers

One of our favorite wedding vendors in the valley is Kelly Gilchrist –  the Catering Sales Manager at The Saguaro, a Joie de Vivre hotel.  Radiant, full of color and charisma – this hotel is cool. The resort nestled in the heart of Old Town Scottsdale boasts the amazing Distrito restaurant – fresh, delicious Mexican cuisine coupled with great drinks, lots of ambience and fun decor. Oh and after dinner, don’t forget to stop at Old Town Whiskey for a nightcap.

I love this place. If you are looking for a great spot for a wedding (several beautiful options), rehearsal dinner (think al fresco dining) or a corporate event (love the ability to host a huge crowd with yummy food and drink by the sparkling pool) – this is your spot. And the best part is – the hotel is a great option for your wedding party and out of town guests!

After an amazing lunch at Distrito (yes, the above pictures were actually eaten by myself and Keith – I know, it’s a tough job, but someone has to do it!) – so when I say amazing – I really, really mean it! I heart the guacamole so much – and that was just the first course.

I asked Kelly a few questions and here are her answers.

What do you want everyone to know about The Saguaro / Garces group?  For starters, all of our Food & Beverage here on property is created by Iron Chef Jose Garces!  Having been a huge fan of Jose’s since he was on the Next Iron Chef of America, I feel honored to be a part of his team and to represent such an amazing food product!  I love to see the looks on guests faces when they are experiencing his cuisine for the first time.

Another thing that sets The Saguaro aside is that we have created an open environment where we encourage the local community to come and join us in all the fun things that we have to offer!  We have monthly events geared toward the local community, including Whiskey School, “Cook Like an Iron Chef” Classes, and Swim Social weekends, which will include Happy Hour by the pool on Fridays, and a DJ and playing 60’s themed music on Saturdays!  Guests can sign up for the Saguaro Smoke Signal for updates and special events at:

What is your favorite item on the menu at Distrito? I truly love everything on the menu, so this is a tough question.  I would say that my ultimate favorite is the Tacos de Mahi Mahi, closely followed by our freshly made Guacamole and our variety of Ceviches!

There is a lot of competition in your field…..why should I have my event at The Saguaro?  Here at the Saguaro we have  fabulous locations to host events that are different than your everyday meeting or banquet rooms. Each private room has vibrant and fun colors that help to create a wonderful environment for any type of event for up to 200 guests, including corporate dinners, weddings and social occasions!!  My favorite is the Zocalo Room, which has its own bar, restrooms and patio with a fireplace.  It’s the perfect location for receptions or dinners- with a view of the Scottsdale Civic Center and Marshall Garden right on your own private patio!

Also, our location puts guests in walking instance to all Old Town Scottsdale, which is full of shops, museums, bars and restaurants.  So…this also makes The Saguaro an ideal place to stay for some fun Scottsdale….especially for wedding weekends!

And did I already mention the amazing food???

What is your philosophy?  How people treat you is their karma…but how you react to them is yours!!

If you could take today off of work, what would you wish that you could be doing?  Laying in a cabana by the pool at the Saguaro, eating Chips and Guacamole and sipping on Sangrias!

Thanks Kelly!