So Scottsdale September 2020

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Feasting in Flagstaff Arizona Restaurant Week’s refresh Elevated comfort eats


Local business and community leaders under 40


B E G I N N I N G S Lauren Raih shares the wild ride that took her from Bravo’s “Summer House” to Scottsdale and what she’s working on now




Face & Neck Lift Blepharoplasty Rhinoplasty Brow Lift Chin Implant Otoplasty

PERFORMED BY DR. HECHT: • Botox • Dermal Fillers


Laser Treatments Chemical Peels Eyelash/Brow Treatments Medical Grade Skin Care

SO SCOTTSDALE EXCLUSIVE: 20% OFF your Hecht MD Aesthetics service! New patients only, space is limited! Offer expires 9.30.2020

480.374.2935 | 20201 N. Scottsdale Healthcare Dr. Suite 250 | Scottsdale, AZ 85255













Carve Out Some Fun This Fall Season. Join the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess with family and friends as it transforms for its first annual spooktacular event, Pumpkin Nights #ATTHEPRINCESS!


Treat yourself with seasonal favorites including homemade pie and hot cider, as you relax in socially distanced seating areas. Let the fall spirit continue, and pick a pumpkin to bring home.


Navigate through a multi-acre labyrinth hay maze, as thrill seekers ride on a Yo-Yo swing chair. Warm up at a fire pit and toast a gooey marshmallow for your little one’s first s’more.


Light up the night every Friday and Saturday at 9PM, with a spectacular fireworks display.


Celebrate fall’s harvest at all the resort’s award winning restaurants with plenty of pumpkin spice, fresh picked fruits, root vegetables and game. Pick up new tips for fall entertaining at the festival’s series of culinary classes, offered by our executive chefs. Don’t miss Brewfest, at The Plaza Bar with a bounty of German beers and Oktoberfest foods.


Watch Princess Plaza glow Friday and Saturday nights as you share your personal message of hope, strength and gratitude during this season. Launches from the Princess fountain in the heart of the resort.


Enjoy fall favorites on a large inflatable screen. Bring your boo for a feature film on Fridays, or join us for Family Fright Nights every Saturday.


• SELF-PARKING & ADMISSION $40 includes 4 wristbands • VALET PARKING & ADMISSION $60 includes 4 wristbands • VALET PARKING & ADMISSION Complimentary with $60 minimum spend at one of the resorts signature restaurants • GENERAL ADMISSION $10 per person for all walk-in guests, including Rideshare Additional wristbands can be purchased at $10 each. Admission includes Pumpkin Patch, Jack-o-Lantern Lawn, Chair Swing Ride, Hay Maze, Lantern Launch & Fireworks Show.

For festival information please visit:


Guest safety and wellness is top-of-mind and an integral part of Fairmont Scottsdale’s ALLSafe initiative.

For those who seek an exceptional life Only one real estate brand gives you that feeling. The feeling that you’re in the presence of the world’s best. Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty achieved $3.88 billion in sales volume in 2019. With 950 Real Estate Advisors and 14 offices throughout Arizona, there is Only Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty. | 480.502.3500 | Scottsdale, Arizona | MLS 6073286

Josie Pakula



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On 20 Acres is Private Gated Bar Artfully Designed for the Best A Equestrian Training Facility Luxury Living in Estancia!

Bring the Horses, Fishing Rods & the S’mores to Bar W Ranch!

Remodeled main house, 2 additonal homes, 1450 sq ft & 1015 sq ft, stunning sunrises & sunsets with majestic views of Pinnacle Peak!

Private circular driveway, 4 car garage, elevated golf course lot, negative double edge pool, exercise room, panoramic views everywhere.

Luxury log home, 60 acres in Show Low, 2 acre stocked lake, 4 stall barn, rustic touches, 1 bedroom apartment in back of home.

$4,000,000 / 6183 SQ FT / 8 BR / 8.5 BA

$3,450,000 / 5779 SQ FT / 4 BR / 4.5 BA

$2,890,000 / 6648 SQ FT / 5 BR / 4.5 BA

JOSIE PAKULA 480-223-3633

JOSIE PAKULA 480-223-3633

JOSIE PAKULA 480-223-3633

Exquisite Hillside Estate in Sonoran Mountain Ranch

Enjoy Endless Views & Nature Incredible 17 Acre, Completely While Celebrating the Good Life! Fenced Horse Facility!

Architecture & desert living at it’s best, custom built using the finest finishings, chef’s kitchen, detached 1 bed/1 bath guest house.

Almost 12 acres situated in a beautiful river valley, horse amenities, multiple pastures, arena & turnouts, breathtaking views!

120x120 covered cutting area, 50’ round pen, custom breezeway barn, mare motel, 6 large turnouts, 3 bed/3 bath modular guest house.

$2,691,800 / 8462 SQ FT / 5 BR / 7.5 BA

$1,395,000 / 2664 SQ FT / 5 BR / 3 BA

$1,100,000 / 2800 SQ FT / 3 BR / 3 BA

JOSIE PAKULA 480-223-3633

JOSIE PAKULA 480-223-3633

JOSIE PAKULA 480-223-3633



Crown Jewel Piece of Land Adjacent to Oak Creek

Stunning Horse Property in a Peaceful Setting on 5 Acres

An Absolute Gem Right in the Heart of Sedona

Huge sycamores, cottonwoods & blackberry bushes line the shady banks of the private beach, hear the rush from the river rapids.

Beautiful single story, vaulted ceilings, salt water pool, barn has 4 stalls with multiple turnouts, tack, feed rooms, endless trail riding.

Custom home with jaw dropping views of the red rocks, gourmet kitchen, built in bar and wine cooler, spacious patio and balconies.

$1,200,000 / 10.34 Acres / 4 Lots

$1,095,000 / 3301 SQ FT / 4 BR / 3 BA

$950,000 / 2600 SQ FT / 3 BR / 3 BA

JOSIE PAKULA 480-223-3633

JOSIE PAKULA 480-223-3633

JOSIE PAKULA 480-223-3633

Single-Level Fairway Condominiums State-of-the-Art Features Priced, fully-loaded, from $1.4M

simplify life. Live life with no worries in an amazing new condominium with incredible custom features and a stunning golf course view! And with the opening of the No. 7 at Desert Mountain™ golf course, play 18 holes in 2 hours and save the afternoons for a hike or a ride on the trails. The Retreat at Seven Desert Mountain offers the perfect low-maintenance, resort lifestyle where residents enjoy exclusive dining and clubhouse amenities, just a 7-iron away.

Three Amazing Models Schedule Your Private Tour Today! 602-708-7300

Rare Gem Overlooking Desert Mountain Cochise Golf Club

Elegant and Timeless in Silverleaf Upper Canyon

Your Dream Home in Desert Highlands!

Desert contemporary, seemless indoor/outdoor living, awe-inspiring sunset & city lights, resort like expansive patio.

This home is a singular work of art with classic european influences & unobstructed mountain views from every single room.

One of the best lots with Pinnacle Peak, city lights & desert views. Indoor/outdoor living, roof deck, pocketing doors, 1,000 wine cellar.

$5,900,000 / 5429 SQ FT / 6 BR / 5 BA

$4,895,000 / 9000 SQ FT / 5 BR / 6.5 BA

$2,995,000 / 6,500 SQ FT / 4 BR / 5.5 BA

JOANIE BARREIRO 480-235-2776

KATHLEEN ‘KATIE’ LANE 480.489.2655

HILLARY GURLEY 602.463.3359

Paradise Valley Camelback Country Estates

Hillside in Paradise Valley

Immaculate Paradise Valley Home in Great Neighborhood!

Spacious house with updated gourmet kitchen, expansive casita, 5+ car garage Pool/Spa/Waterslide on private 1.28 acres.

Timeless design in Tatum Canyon, stunning mountain views, 3 large bedroom suites, exercise room, oversized garage.

Private lot with lush landscaping, Pool with water features, large entertaining kitchen, vaulted ceilings, french doors to back yard.

$2,700,000 / 7822 SQ FT / 5 BR / 5.5 BA

$2,259,000 / 5020 SQ FT / 3 BR 4 BA

$1,770,000 / 4442 SQ FT / 4 BR / 4 BA

SUZI MILLER 480-695-3003

SUE SHAPIRO 602.809.9242

JANE BLACKER 480-283-3009

Incredible Location in Paradise The Enclave in Valley Gainey Ranch

2 Story Contemporary Gem in Historic Southwest Village

Hallmark location, acre + lot, great views split master bedroom, pool, BBQ, firepit bonus room, 3 car garage.

Picturesque setting on the golf course, single level, beautiful home, courtyard entry 2 fireplaces, family room.

Spectacluar mountain views, lux materials throughout, connecting balconies, lavish 1st floor master, 3 car garage, exp. mid Sept.

$1,480,000 / 4824 SQ FT / 4 BR / 3 BA

$1,300,000 / 3083 SQ FT / 2 BR / 2.5 BA

$1,295,000 / 3506 SQ FT / 5 BR / 5 BA

SUE SHAPIRO 602.809.9242

SUE SHAPIRO 602.809.9242

PAT CARLETON 602-885-2404

the Jonas collection

a new twist on an old classic

We’ve introduced our classic Jonas series of chairs, stools and benches, in a stunning new, black paper cord, woven seat. This fresh take on a classic look, will bring you years of carefree use. Available from stock in both solid teak or solid walnut. Beautifully simplistic, our version features slightly tapered legs for a more refined look. This classic design has and will continue to endure the test of time. Also available in natural color cord. As part of our 50th Anniversary Specials Collection, the Jonas series is priced like never before. $ $ 56� Bench: Teak reg $289 Now $215 / Walnut reg $299 Now $245 $ $ Dining chair: Teak reg $179 Now $139 / Walnut reg $199 Now $159 $ $ Barstool with back: Teak reg $259 Now $195 / Walnut reg $279 Now $209 $ $ Backless counter stool: Teak reg $235 Now $179 / Walnut reg $265 Now $199 $ $ Dining stool: Teak reg $129 Now $99 / Walnut reg $139 Now $109

fifty years of great design and strong value SCOTTSDALE 15804 N. Scottsdale Rd. (South of Bell) 480-367-6401 PHOENIX 1701 E. Camelback 602-266-8060 TEMPE 2346 E. Southern (at 101) 480-838-3080 TUCSON 3660 E. Fort Lowell 520-795-0316



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W W W. G O O C H I E G O O.C O M

*Private Shopping Appointments & Curbside Pick-Up Available Call us at (480) 659-2964

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Contents Escape the real-world hustle by booking an appointment with your favorite Scottsdale color expert and master stylist, Rodney Gentry. Kick back and relax in Rodney’s private salon suite while he works magic on your hair, taking the utmost care with your beauty and your health. Look gorgeous and feel fabulous this summer! For an appointment, please call 480.639.2000, or visit for more information.

ON THE COVER: Lauren Raih. Photo by Claudia Johnstone.

Features 36 NEW BEGINNINGS Lauren Raih shares the wild ride that took her from Bravo’s “Summer House” to Scottsdale and what she’s working on now

40 GENERATION NEXT Local business and community leaders under 40

"Who Did Your Hair?" Scottsdale’s Hair Color Guru, Rod Gentry, is the go-to expert for coloring your tresses

Hair color is tricky. Ensuring the perfect shade, finishing the process with hair that is still healthy, creating the perfect look—there are not many who can do it all or who are known as the go-to expert in color. But now Scottsdale has a color guru. Rod Gentry, one of the industry’s color experts, has relocated from Chicago— where he spent 24 years working in the field—to Scottsdale.

HIS WEALTH OF KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERTISE WILL ALLOW THEM TO ACHIEVE THE LOOK THEY WANT; AND THAT THE COLOR WILL BE PERFECT, EVERY TIME. His clients know four main things about Rod: They’ll receive undivided, personalized attention at their appointment (no double booking!); he’ll use only the top and best products to ensure their hair stays healthy; his wealth of knowledge and expertise will allow them to achieve the look they want; and that the color will be perfect, every time. Rod approaches hair color differently than others, first working with a client to determine the look they want, and then taking into account the client’s complexion and lifestyle to make sure that the end result will be something that is both flattering and workable. One of his main focuses is always on the health of the hair, and so he uses only high-end, enzyme-based

developers (rather than peroxide-based ones) so that hair is left in a better condition, and extremely shiny. He also always finishes a color process with a conditioning treatment as part of the color service. “You can have long hair and great color, but if it’s damaged, it won’t look as good,” he explains. He relentlessly pursues education to stay at the top of his field, traveling worldwide to learn about the newest innovative techniques, products and knowledge, training in such places as London and New York. “I really think that education is the key to success,” he explains. Rod’s services include single process color, highlights, color gloss, color paneling, ombre, extended conditioning, color correction, color removal and more, as well as cuttingedge haircuts. “I guarantee my work. Period,” he says.

Hair color specialist Rodney Gentry is located in a private studio at Sachi Studios, 10201 N. Scottsdale Rd., Suite 10, Scottsdale, AZ 85258. For an appointment, please call 480.639.2000, or visit for more information.

Contents Now 67 HOT TICKET Sonoran Sippin’ at Desert Botanical Garden

68 LOWDOWN Specials and news to know

72 OUT Feasting through Flagstaff

74 OUT Arizona Restaurant Week

76 CULTURE Artists Nancy and Mark Dabrowski

Pulse 25 UP CLOSE Vivian Valenty and Silva Nahabedian are revolutionizing the nail industry through Dazzle Dry

28 BEAT Kaitlyn Wolfe creates one-of-a-kind spaces reflecting minimalistic and modern aesthetics

30 BEAT Mike Homco empowers individuals with intellectual disabilities

32 HIS STYLE Meet Dustin Wilson

34 HER STYLE Meet Erin Elizabeth


So Scottsdale! September ‘20




( 4 8 0 ) 367- 1717

(480) 705-4191

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Contents Style 79 MUST-HAVE Colorful cuffs

80 ALLURE Barely there

82 DWELL Retro revival

84 SHOP Butterfly effect

85 SHOP Great lengths

86 FASHION Fashionably distant

Luxe 95 INDULGE Wine time

96 WHEELS 2020 Cadillac XT6

97 WANT Wilson Creek Manor

98 HAUTE Relaxing retreat

100 PLACES Tucson’s top resorts


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

Which Do You Want To Be After Divorce?

How divorce treats you can come down to whether you have a most innovative law firm on your side. Started by one woman nearly twenty years ago, it has grown to nearly fifty attorneys and employees today. Google us. We know you will like what you see, and the difference we make, especially when it comes to our Family Law Department, headed by Kaine Fisher. 480.505.393 6 | 7144 E Stetson Drive, Su ite 300, Scottsdale, AZ 85251 | i Asset Protection/Estate Planning • Class Action • Corporate • Cyberbullying • DUI • Elder Care • Elections • Employment • Equine • Family/Parenting Rights Government Relations/Lobbying • Homeowners Associations • Intellectual Property • Internet Fraud • Land Use • Litigation • Medical Cannabis • Online Defamation/ Cyber-Reputation Management • Real Estate Transactions • Renewable Energy • Special Needs Planning • Tax • Water/Environmental • Zoning

Contents The Rest 1 14 NEW IN TOWN Francine

Taste 102 DRINK New-to-market Arizona beers

103 DISH Pasta Primavera at Sophia’s Kitchen

104 CHEERS Ranch Romance at Liberty Station

105 CUISINE In the kitchen with Christopher Smith of Merkin Vineyards

106 FOOD FILES Elevated indulgences

108 DINING GUIDE Restaurants to know


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

Deb Capaldi

Founder & Owner

HAPPY ANNIVERSARY PUCCI! 29 YEARS. “It’s all because of my Amazing team and our Dedicated clients. THANK YOU!”


480.443.3030 7293 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale, AZ 85253



Publisher Bill Richman

Vice President of Operations Stacey Richman

Creative Director

Let us help you clear, smooth, and enhance your skin with the latest technology and techniques in the industry. LASER & AESTHETIC SERVICES INCLUDE: • Microneedling • PRP Microneedling

Anthony Cox

Editorial Staff Kaylor Jones, Adrienne Kalehuawehe, Gabby Leighton, Chelsea Young

Contributing Writers Alison Bailin Batz, Angel Fuchs, Mandy Holmes, Heather Lynn Horvat, Kaylor Jones, Neyda Melina, Jim Prueter

Photographers Claudia Johnstone, Beverly Shumway, Debby Wolvos

• IPL Skin Rejuvenation • Venus Viva RF Fractional Skin Resurfacing • RF Skin Tightening • Laser Hair Removal

Advertising Art Director Lalo Reyes

Advertising Coordinator Stacey Richman

• Tattoo Removal • Laser Vein Treatments • Customized Facials

Contact Us

• Dermaplaning


• Chemical Peels

• Cryoskin Slimming & Toning • Cryo Facials

Advertising 480.229.3122


602.373.8145 10900 N Scottsdale Rd Suite 105 Scottsdale, AZ 85254 22

So Scottsdale! September ‘20

P: 480.229.3122 10632 N. Scottsdale Road Suite B-215 Scottsdale, AZ 85254 © 2020, RICHMAN MEDIA GROUP, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.


TYPICALLY, THE WINTER months are when the Arizona housing market is in full swing. However, right now is actually the BEST time to buy a home. Just recognized as Top 10 Realtors for Volume sold in Arizona by REAL Trends, Realtor Lisa Roberts tells us why we should consider buying now. The real estate market is very hot right now. Home prices are regaining— and surpassing—pre-COVID levels and won’t be decreasing any time soon. Super low mortgage rates are motivating buyers, increasing demand. There is no way of knowing if interest rates are going to stay low. Right now, although prices have increased over the past few years, interest rates are even lower than before. The amount of interest people are paying is less and, therefore, are paying less over the life of the loan for the home at today’s values than they were a year or so ago. If interest rates rise—and prices rise—people may not be able to buy as much home, therefore pricing themselves out of the market. If the incredibly low interest rates are not enough to sway you, consider the investment. Buying is a good investment—either for your family or as an actual investment property. People are moving here from all over the country and worldwide. Many from California, Washington, Texas, Illinois just to name a few. Rental prices are way up, so buying as an investment is a good ROI—return on your investment. A property that is 1,100 square feet used to rent for about $1,000

monthly back in 2011, but now prices are closer to $1,700. Statically since 1950, if someone purchased a property and held it for 10 years, it was worth more than when they purchased it 10 years later, whether purchasing in an up or down market. Being stuck at home the past several months has people reconsidering what they want in a home. And where they want to quarantine. The Valley is one of the most desirable areas in the country for many reasons: great weather

all year round makes it a natural choice for outdoor lovers and golfers; restaurants, culture, and lots more to see and do; and let’s not forget about low taxes. And for anyone wanting to know what the market is like currently— remember back in May when you were looking for toilet paper? Yeah, the market is like that. Call Lisa for more info! Contact Lisa Roberts at 480.232.3291 or

Find Yourself.

4151 N. Marshall Way, Scottsdale AZ 85251 www. 480-423-5000 800-677-6821 PROUDLY MADE IN THE U.S.A. CUSTOM DESIGNS AVAILABLE


U P C L O S E / B E AT / H I S S T Y L E / H E R S T Y L E



Vivian Valenty and Silva Nahabedian are revolutionizing the nail industry through Dazzle Dry

Vivian Valenty and Silva Nahabedian are the dynamic duo behind Dazzle Dry, an innovative nail polish system that air-dries nails in five minutes while eliminating smudging – and potentially harmful ingredients. “I was intrigued by nature, having been exposed to the use

of local plants as medicine as a child in the Philippines,” says Valenty, Dazzle Dry’s founder and president. Valenty’s interest in medicinal plants inspired her to become a bio-organic chemist, receiving a doctorate in bio-organic chemistry from Penn State University. Valenty then got her start in the

So Scottsdale! September ‘20


Pulse UP CLOSE nail industry by inventing the first UV-curing topcoat that dried on any freshly-applied traditional polish in just six minutes. She sold this topcoat, along with 20 other nail care products, as a private label for 15 years before launching her own brand, complete with the four-step Dazzle Dry system, in 2007. “Dazzle Dry is the only polish system that air-dries in five minutes, rivaling the longevity of UV gel polishes without the harmful effects of UVA exposure, potential allergies from reactive chemicals, or the need to soak in pure acetone for removal,” Valenty says. “I believe that what we put on our bodies has an impact on our health. By developing the system components from scratch, I was able to select ingredients that are nonallergenic, nontoxic, and not animal derived.” Nahabedian, a celebrity nail care specialist who has worked on movie sets and made celebrity house calls, first experienced Dazzle Dry in 2014 after moving from Los Angeles to Arizona. “As a perpetual student of my craft, I was intrigued to learn more about Dazzle Dry and why it was so different from any other nail lacquer on the market,” Nahabedian says. “When I experienced the product and all of its benefits, I couldn’t believe that it truly held up to its claims. The results were astonishing!”

Teaming Up A self-described super-fan of Dazzle Dry, Nahabedian was determined to help spread the word. In 2015, Valenty hired Nahabedian as the company’s director of education, a position which allows her to travel across the country with a team of Regional Education Ambassadors (REAs) to train professionals at resort spas and salons on how to properly use the product. “The ‘must-have’ product is the Dazzle Dry System, consisting of four steps and Revive,” Nahabedian says. To start, the Nail Prep cleanses and moisturizes while infusing nails with Provitamin B5 and calcium. The second step, the Base Coat, prevents premature chipping with flexible rubber polymers that allow the nail to expand and contract with water absorption. Third is the Lacquer, available in over 150 shades. Lastly, the high-gloss, long-lasting Top Coat seals in the color and protects the nails from abrasion. The additional step, Revive, is a thinner that reconstitutes the Lacquer and Top Coat without impacting the performance or pigment. Dazzle Dry can be found across the Valley, including at the Well & Being Spa at Fairmount Scottsdale Princess and can also be purchased online for at-home use. The system not only addresses many of the complaints regarding traditional polishes, and particularly at spas, it helps improve efficiency and the customer experience. “When at a spa, you can enjoy the pool, sauna and other amenities immediately after getting a manicure or pedicure without fear of ruining your newly polished nails,” Valenty says. These remarkable results are thanks to Valenty’s expertise and attention to detail. “Because we have to formulate from scratch, we checked every ingredient in the polish for health-related issues and avoided those known to cause allergies and any that are endocrine disruptors or have been called out by


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

consumer groups and other organizations as toxic. We also decided to avoid animal-derived ingredients such as carmine from cochineal beetles, guanine from fish scales, and animal fat-derived stearic acid.” For Nahabedian, sharing information about what she calls the most revolutionary nail lacquer system on the market is just part of what makes her role so rewarding. “My favorite part of my job is coaching and inspiring my team of REAs and all manicurists I encounter to bring out their natural strengths,” she says. “I love being able to enhance people’s confidence and self-esteem by providing them with results-oriented manicures and pedicures.”

Paying it Forward Valenty and Nahabedian also use Dazzle Dry to give back. For every online retail order, the company plants one tree in support of WeForest’s reforestation projects – in two years, Dazzle Dry funded the planting of 79,086 trees in India and Zambia. Additionally, a portion of proceeds from the popular Mini Kits are donated to Black Girls Code and A Call to Men. Dazzle Dry has also made donations to Girls Opportunity Alliance and Wildlife Victoria, and once the coronavirus pandemic began, a portion of manufacturing was converted to producing hand sanitizer for donation. Supporting these causes has been influenced by Valenty’s family and her own commitment to being part of creating positive change. “My parents have instilled in me the value of education from an early age, and I ascribe my accomplishments to the education that I’ve managed to get,” she says. “It’s therefore not surprising to those who know me that we chose nonprofits relating to current social issues to support the journey toward long-term solutions for not only the U.S., but the whole of humanity.” For a list of Scottsdale spas and salons – as well as to purchase products for home use – visit


Q: Why do my feet hurt? A: Everyone experiences an ache or pain in their feet once in a while. However, if the pain persists, it’s your body’s way of telling you it needs attention. Injury and repetitive stress, mechanical imbalances, inherited conditions, and early signs of a systemic condition can all interfere with your everyday activities. Q: What are some of the most common foot problems? A: Chronic foot pain, bunions, heel pain, tendinitis, ingrown and fungus nails are typically what cause people to seek care for their feet. Subtle changes like new shoes or, at this time when we’re spending more time at home, going barefoot, or increased activity can all lead to pain.

Q: What’s new in how you take care of conditions? A: There are so many new ways to diagnose and treat problems which are less invasive, have fewer side effects and offer better outcomes than ever before. Regenerative medicine, which activates the body’s own healing response, has had the biggest impact on how I care for my patients. It’s given me the potential to initiate a regenerative, restorative response to help repair tissues.

Q: What’s the best advice you can give to someone sufferingfrom foot or ankle pain? A: There is no benefit to waiting to see a doctor. I believe it’s best to make an appointment at the first signs of a problem. But it’s never too late to ask for help.

Q: What’s your approach to treating foot pain? A: Instead of just treating symptoms and trying to stabilize a condition, I identify the underlying problem. The goal is to not only alleviate pain as quickly as possible, but to also treat the condition that is causing it.

DOES FOOT PAIN HAVE YOU LIVING LIFE ON A SHORT LEASH? Do you wish you could walk farther with your furry friend? Are you being treated for neuropathy with no relief? It’s time to start asking questions…there is hope. Contact our office today to see how our team of uniquely trained doctors can help.

(602) 954-0777 AZFEET.COM

Dr. Kerry Zang, Podiatric Medical Director Dr. Shahram Askari • Dr. Daniel Schulman • Dr. Joshua Cady Dr. Kimberly Leach • Dr. Barry Kaplan • Dr. Jeffrey Weiss


Pulse BEAT


Kaitlyn Wolfe creates one-of-a-kind spaces reflecting minimalistic and modern aesthetics

As the owner and principal designer of Iconic Design + Build (, Kaitlyn Wolfe is on a mission to transform outdated spaces with fresh, modern details that are equally beautiful and functional. At a young age, Wolfe was instilled with an appreciation for design after her family moved to Elham, England, a small village outside of London. “The experience of living and traveling abroad left me inspired by the character and history of European architecture,” Wolfe says. After earning her MBA and working with a variety of notable architecture and design firms, Wolfe started her business in 2016 with the goal of combining her expertise in construction with distinctive design and unrivaled customer service. At Iconic Design + Build, Wolfe takes each client through a collaborative six-phase process, determining the project scope and budget, designing the home, managing the construction, installing furnishings, and coordinating the final photographs. Her unique aesthetic is a mix of minimalistic Scandinavian design with a dash of Frank Lloyd Wright’s desert-inspired style. “Every project I execute has its own personality, which is driven by the project’s architecture and history combined with my client’s needs and lifestyle,” Wolfe says. “We’ve become known for our modern designs, with clean lines and simple silhouettes. I love experimenting with warmer tones and mixing materials like terrazzo, concrete, steel and natural stone.” For those looking to revamp their space during quarantine, Wolfe emphasizes the importance of curating an overall vision with a specific goal in mind. “Create an action plan organized by priority and budget. Start with the spaces that are used most, whether the office, family room or kitchen,” says Wolfe, who also offers an e-design service that includes a virtual consultation, project vision boards, 3D renderings, and an action plan to help you revamp your home no matter where you live. “Invest in comfortable seating, rugs, hardware and lighting and think about what makes you happy.” Much of Wolfe’s happiness is found in the natural world, and she uses that to influence her designs. “I gather my inspiration from traveling and visiting famous hotels and restaurants,” she says. “In my spare time, you might find me hiking or camping in a national park!”


So Scottsdale! September ‘20





When toning muscles is your goal, take yourself further with Strengthen, Tone and Firm the Muscles of the ABDOMEN BUTTOCKS THIGHS Photos courtesy of Dr. David Rapaport, Rapaport Plastic Surgery



Photos courtesy of Dr. Amir Moradi, Moradi, MD





Shed the Quarantine 15 with a CoolTone™ and CoolSculpting® combo. CoolTone™ is the latest FDA-cleared, non-surgical body contouring device. This innovative technology uses magnetic muscle stimulation (MMS) to tone and strengthen the underlying muscles in the treated area. The MMS technology causes involuntary contractions in the targeted muscles, passing through the skin tissue and fat layers. These contractions improve muscle conditioning by triggering your body to reinforce the associated muscle fibers. CoolTone™ results provide firm muscle tone and definition.

CALL US NOW! 480.536.7640 ARIZONA AESTHETICS CENTER 7450 E. Pinnacle Peak Road #258 | Scottsdale, AZ 85255 CoolSculpting® is FDA-cleared to treat visible fat bulges in 9 areas of the body. Some common side effects include temporary numbness, discomfort, and swelling. CoolTone™ is FDA-cleared to strengthen, tone, and firm the abdomen, buttocks and thighs. Common side effects include muscle, joint or tendon pain, muscle spasm, and skin redness.

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ONE STEP BEYOND Mike Homco empowers individuals with intellectual disabilities

In 1981, Arizona native Mike Homco was born six weeks early, weighing just 2 pounds, 10 ounces. Despite being a preemie, Homco hit all of his early development milestones quickly, both walking and talking early. “To hear my mom tell the story, I was a miracle baby,” Homco says. “But in reality, she deserves all the credit.” Homco’s mother raised him and his younger brother on her own while working full time as a speech pathologist. From a young age, Homco marveled at the impact she had on people’s lives. By 17, he started on his own path to impacting others, teaching himself how to fix the various devices his mother used to help treat her clients with language disorders. “I set a goal to work with people with intellectual diasblities just like her,” Homco says. In 2003, Homco met Mimi Rogers, who was about to launch One Step Beyond, Inc. (OSBI), a nonprofit focused on empowering adults with intellectual disabilities to be independent, effectively seek and maintain employment, and achieve greater social participation in their communities. “I became her first employee that same year,” says Homco, who worked for the organization until 2011, when he left to pursue his formal education in the field and gain additional experience by working for Arizona’s Division of Developmental Disabilities and as a speech and language pathology assistant. Homco rejoined OSBI in 2016 as executive director. Over the past several years, he’s helped the organization grow in both Arizona and California. He has also been busy after hours, working toward his master’s degree in clinical speech-language pathology and – with his wife – raising their daughter, Mackenzie, and new baby, Avery. “Our team has also been working for years toward the launch of a campus in Scottsdale, which we opened in January,” Homco says. The campus offers vocational and prevocational programs, life skills courses, performing and fine arts programs, culinary training, health and wellness services, recreation and socaliazation programs, and even ice hockey. “Amid COVID-19, we are offering both virtual and on-campus programming, in addition to in-home support,” Homco says. “I know our work is making a positive impact by helping each person grow, gain skills, and work toward independence.”


So Scottsdale! September ‘20


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ACCOUNTING FOR STYLE When it comes to fashion, it’s all in the details for Dustin Wilson BY MANDY HOLMES / PHOTO BY BEVERLY SHUMWAY

Scottsdale boasts plenty of sunshine for Dustin Wilson’s urban, West Coast style. By day, Wilson works in public accounting as an auditor but when the sun sets, he pulls a complete wardrobe change by transitioning to a blend of designer brands and basics that complement one another. “I like to pair a Louis Vuitton belt with a pair of Joe’s Jeans with a rolled cuff and a V-neck or button-down from Ted Baker, Burberry or Banana Republic,” he says. Staying active and living a healthy lifestyle are important for Wilson, so he often relies on stylish athleisure pieces from Lululemon and Banana Republic like slim-fit performance shorts with a Frenchtucked V-neck shirt paired with Tom Ford sunglasses. For Wilson, comfort and versatility aren’t just for the weekends. “I like to have well-fitted pants that move with me, which is why I tend to choose Lululemon pants and a dressier top,” he says. With a love for shirts that have something classic or some sort of visual appeal – like a subtle, colorful cuff or a pop of color inside the collar – Wilson notes he’d happily trade closets with David Beckham given the chance.

What is your must-have fasion item? I love a performance chino because you can dress it up with a nice button-down and sports coat, or dress it down with a V-neck and casual button-down. What is the most prized possession in your closet? My Christian Louboutin shoes. Not only are they comfortable, they make me feel suave! How does your career influence your style? My style is a representation of my work. I am a very detail-oriented person and that comes through in my work and my everyday style.


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

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Local blogger Erin Elizabeth keeps her style colorful, confident and creative


If you’re looking for a dose of style inspiration, fashion and lifestyle blogger Erin Elizabeth of Wink and a Twirl (found on Instagram @wink_and_a_twirl) has more than enough to share. From everyday outfit tips to a detailed how-to on traveling in style, the 30-something influencer is an open book from her style to her life, even documenting her journey through miscarriage, IVF and now surrogacy. Inspired by fellow bloggers like Emily Rose Hannon and Caitlin Covington, Elizabeth keeps her everyday wardrobe colorful and affordable. “My signature look consists of a classic pair of denim shorts or jeans; a colorful top; some dainty, gold jewelry; and the perfect nude lip,” she says. From statement tops with puffy sleeves to floral prints and all things color, Elizabeth flexes her style and taps into her natural ability to get creative. “Just because you may have always stuck to one style, doesn’t mean you can’t experiment with trends and discover a love for something new. There are no barriers when it comes to fashion,” she says. Although her closet is bursting with the latest looks, Elizabeth says confidence is the most important element to any outfit. “Walk with your head held high, a smile on your face, and the knowledge that you are amazing and beautiful.”

What’s your go-to item right now? A pair of clear, slide heels. They go with everything! Tell us about your work-from-home look. My workday attire usually consists of athleisure post-workout. On weekends, you’ll find me in a cute dress or a pair of jeans, shorts, a fun top, and white sneakers. What would someone say if they looked in your closet? That I love all things color! Color makes me happy, and the world needs a little more happiness.


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

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Lauren Raih shares the wild ride that took her from Bravo’s “Summer House” to Scottsdale and what she’s working on now


So Scottsdale! September ‘20


So Scottsdale! September ‘20


For years, audiences got a glimpse into Lauren Raih’s life during her time as a regular cast member on Bravo’s “Summer House.” A founding cast member of the cable reality TV series, Raih (formerly Wirkus) lit up the screen for the first two years of the show’s run. However, the real show for the California native started earlier this year when she moved to Scottsdale to be with then-fiance David Raih, the wide receivers coach for the Arizona Cardinals. Promptly upon moving to Scottsdale in March, COVID-19 effectively shut down the state. “Thankfully, I’d already had a lesson or two in life taking unexpected turns,” Raih says. Born and raised in San Diego, Raih is part of a big family, which includes an identical twin sister (Ashley), an older sister, and five half-siblings. “Our parents divorced when we were young and married their current spouses a week apart from each other,” says Raih, whose siblings range in age from 15 to 33. “We are all extremely close, especially Ashley and me.”

IN IT TO TWIN IT The twins loved two things growing up: math and fashion. “We were good with numbers from the time we were in diapers,” Raih says. “And our mom helped us find ways to resell our clothes to make room in our closets for new looks pretty regularly, so we got that bug early as well.” After graduating high school in 2005, the twins studied managerial economics at the University of California, Davis. They also joined Delta Gamma sorority. In a surprise to no one who knew her, Raih led its finance committee at just 20. By junior year, the twins were interning at Morgan Stanley’s Northern California office, working toward what they assumed would be full-time positions. “Due to the Great Recession, there was a hiring freeze just as we graduated in 2009,” Raih says. “We were stunned but didn’t let it keep us down.” Together with her twin, Raih set her sights on the Big Apple, in part for the adventure and in part because it felt like the only place hiring in finance at that time. “Through a family contact, we secured


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

an interview with Daymond John at his Empire State Building office,” Raih says. “People would know him best as founder of FUBU and as an investor – or ‘shark’ – on ‘Shark Tank.’” Impressed with their motivation, he offered them each an internship in 2010. “Those first few months sharing a tiny apartment with friends weren’t exactly the New York we’d seen on ‘Sex and the City,’ but I wouldn’t trade those memories for anything,” Raih says. By 2012, both twins locked down fulltime jobs – Lauren with a private equity firm and Ashley with a real estate developer. They also started spending summer weekends in the Hamptons. “We grew up on a beach, but it took moving to the East Coast, where beach season is only a few months, for us to really appreciate it,” Raih says. “We became regulars everywhere from Southampton to Montauk.” Not long after summer wound down in 2015, on a whim, Raih went with friends to a casting call for young professionals who summered in the Hamptons. “When Ashley and I walked in and saw nearly all of our friends in the room, we knew it could be a natural fit to be part of the concept,” Raih says. “We started filming that next summer. Little did we know just how big the show would be.”

FROM SHOWBIZ TO SCOTTSDALE The show began as a spinoff of sorts from Bravo’s already established hit series “Vanderpump Rules,” which follows 20- and 30-somethings’ business and personal lives while working at a popular West Hollywood seen-and-be-seen hot spot owned by Bravo megastar Lisa Vanderpump. “The first episode was a crossover, where girls from the Vanderpump cast visited us in the Hamptons,” Raih says. “This then led right into our second episode, which introduced our cast of characters in a similar vein.” A cult hit at first, “Summer House” climbed in the ratings each week, especially in the coveted 18-49 demographic. Studio executives were so impressed that it was renewed for a second season almost immediately. Raih – who still worked her full-time

LOOKING AHEAD, RAIH CONTINUES TO BUILD HER LIFESTYLE BRAND, NOW FOCUSED ON EMPOWERING WOMEN AND OFFERING TIPS ON EVERYTHING FROM FASHION TO FINANCE TO FINDING LOVE. IN THE LOCAL COMMUNITY, SHE’S EXCITED TO BEGIN VOLUNTEERING WITH CARDINALS CHARITIES, WHICH SUPPORTS PROGRAMS THAT HELP IMPROVE THE QUALITY OF LIFE AND ENHANCE OPPORTUNITIES FOR CHILDREN, WOMEN, AND MINORITIES IN ARIZONA. job and launched a lifestyle brand under her maiden name on Instagram while filming – was a standout on “Summer House” for her larger-than-life personality and unbreakable bond with Ashley. Together, the two were often nicknamed “The Wirkus Circus.” However, the circus had one issue: Ashley was married and wanted to spend more time with her husband in her native California, so the two planned a move. “After the first season, Ashley was living full time back in San Diego and though she still filmed a bit, it wasn’t the same. After season two, we both decided it was time to move on,” says Raih, who returned to San Diego in 2019 assuming she would

get back to her normal life while continuing with her thriving lifestyle brand. However, it seems Manhattan had other plans for her. “But not the Manhattan you think,” Raih says. In 2019, she met David Raih during a Fourth of July celebration on Manhattan Beach near Los Angeles. “I’d known of him for years as his brother is a close friend of mine. In fact, this friend talked about David prior to me, but when I was in New York, the meeting never happened. All that changed when we locked eyes on that fateful day. It was love at first sight. Corny, but true,” Raih says. “Just seven months later, he proposed, and I made plans to move to Scottsdale after we got married.” However, seeing as the pandemic took hold of the nation just two weeks later, the couple moved up their plans. She moved to Scottsdale in March, just days before the shelter-in-place order took effect. During that time, the two made plans to get married in June. “The plan was always to marry before football season started, but what was going to be a massive, multiday celebration transitioned to a family-only affair in Santa Monica on June 27,” Raih says. “And now, real life – not reality life – truly begins.” Looking ahead, Raih continues to build her lifestyle brand, now focused on empowering women and offering tips on everything from fashion to finance to finding love. In the local community, she’s excited to begin volunteering with Cardinals Charities, which supports programs that help improve the quality of life and enhance opportunities for children, women, and minorities in Arizona. “Since its inception, Cardinals Charities has distributed more than $9 million to hundreds of worthy charitable organizations on behalf of the Arizona Cardinals and the National Football League,” Raih says. “I am so honored to be a part of it, especially when it comes to all the work they do with children’s charities, which is a passion of mine.” Speaking of children, babies are also on the newlyweds’ brains. “Our focus moving forward is faith, football and family, including starting one of our own here in Scottsdale,” Raih says. “Ashley and her husband have a 16-monthold son, so we need to catch up!”

So Scottsdale! September ‘20



Local business and community leaders under 40

Whether you believe leaders are born or made, there is one thing that’s undeniable: It takes a certain type of person to stand out as a leader. Those in positions of leadership are tasked with inspiring and encouraging others, making tough decisions, and creating change for the better, both at work and in the community. Here, we share the stories of five local leaders whose dedication and drive are shaping the Valley.


So Scottsdale! September ‘20



Executive Vice President: Corporate Risk & Broking Market Leader AZ, Willis Towers Watson

As an executive vice president at Willis Towers Watson, Nicole Johnson has made a career out of being a team player. After leaving her small town in California, where she was a competitive athlete, Johnson attended the University of Arizona to study elementary education. “After a couple of years in Tucson, I knew it was time to spread my wings and head to Phoenix for more opportunity,” says Johnson, who decided to take the leap from education to the insurance industry, where she was thrown right into sales and cold calling for leads. “It was the best decision I made – I learned some serious grit, and that ‘no’ just means you’re one step closer to a ‘yes!’” After 12 years of sales roles, board positions, and community involvement, in 2019, Johnson took on a leadership role managing the Arizona arm of Willis Towers Watson, the third-largest global insurance brokerage firm in the world. In her current position, she manages nearly 100 employees across 10 teams, spearheading innovation within the company while building relationships with clients. The mom of two has also served on the board of directors for Make-A-Wish Arizona and committees for Children’s Museum of Phoenix and Valley of the Sun United Way’s Women United, in addition to co-founding a women’s networking group. “I hope to be known for passionately mentoring women in business to grow and excel,” Johnson says. “I want people to see me as a collaborator and a leader who empowers all voices and opinions to be recognized to create a stronger team.” For future business leaders – and to the students she mentors as part of the GCU Advisory Board – Johnson stresses the importance of rooting your choices in positivity. “Positive intention and attitude can open doors for you to grow not only in your career, but in your personal development,” she says. “You get out of life what you give, so give big!” So Scottsdale! September ‘20



THOMAS BARR Executive Director, Local First Arizona

As executive director of Local First Arizona – a nonprofit celebrating independent, local businesses – Thomas Barr leads the largest coalition of local businesses in North America, with over 3,500 members. “We advocate for a strong local business community through entrepreneurship programs, small business activism, local food initiatives, sustainability, urban development and community building,” Barr says. An Arizona native who earned his bachelor’s degree from Arizona State University in 2010, Barr initially worked in data consulting, leading him to New York City and then Houston before moving home in 2012. “I was actually working at the Phoenix Zoo when my life changed forever.” The then-chair of Local First had a speaking engagement at the zoo, inspiring Barr to connect with its founder, Kimber Lanning. “Her passion for Arizona’s small and independent businesses touched me and took me back to my freshman year in college,” Barr says. “During that time, the Great Recession took hold of Arizona’s economy, impacting my friends and my own family in a devastating way.” Inspired by the organization’s mission to help and proactively protect the Arizona business community, Barr took a job in membership for Local First in 2013. “It opened my eyes to all of the Arizona organizations doing their part to affect positive change,” says Barr, who joined the boards of directors for Young Nonprofit Professionals Network Phoenix and Equality Arizona as a result. In 2018, Barr was named executive director of Local First. He also got involved on the board for Phoenix Legal Action Network and graduated in Valley Leadership Class XL last year. Looking ahead, Barr and his team are focused on COVID-19 assistance. “We are trying to build a resilient economy, and we cannot do that without a strong small business community,” Barr says. “Arizona needs our dedicated help to rebuild, recalibrate and recover.”


So Scottsdale! September ‘20


RACHEL EGBORO Director, The Whole Story

Rachel Egboro, director of The Whole Story, has cultivated a space to elevate and celebrate Black narratives through personal storytelling. A daughter of Nigerian immigrants, Arizona native Egboro launched The Whole Story in January 2017 as racial tensions continued to rise throughout the country. “With three years of experience in Phoenix’s storytelling scene, I approached Phoenix Art Museum with my idea to create a space for Black people to share and celebrate their experiences,” says Egboro, noting the show debuted to a sold-out crowd. Since then, every quarter, Egboro coaches five individuals from the Black community on crafting and developing their stories for the 300-person audience. Egboro and The Whole Story, which is currently holding virtual shows and has plans for future live events, have received recognition from Phoenix New Times, Phoenix Business Journal, and Phoenix Magazine. Egboro has also incorporated personal storytelling into programs at Prevent Child Abuse Arizona, Arizona Community Foundation, and Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Phoenix. Part of her goal is to emphasize that there is never a single story about a place or a people, and that it’s up to everyone to listen and learn from others. “We’re all connected through our shared experience as human beings – this is a connection deeper than the skin,” Egboro says. “We mustn’t get caught up in initial impressions or assumptions but, instead, know that there is more to someone’s story than meets the eye.” Egboro hopes that through her work, she can leave a legacy of authentic connection between people who have the courage and vulnerability to share their failures, the lessons they’ve learned along the way, and their plans to move forward. “Speak for yourself. Your voice matters. Your perspective matters. You are enough,” Egboro says. “No matter how young you are, what you have to say matters.” So Scottsdale! September ‘20



JESSIE BUSTAMANTE Chief Advancement Officer, ACCEL

As chief advancement officer for Arizona Centers for Comprehensive Education and Life Skills (ACCEL), Jessie Bustamante leads fundraising and community outreach efforts for the nonprofit organization, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary serving individuals with developmental disabilities, including autism and those that are behavioral and cognitive. “The seeds for advocacy were planted in me at the University of Arizona,” says Bustamante, who found a flyer in her mailbox for Blue Chip as a freshman in 2002. Blue Chip offered opportunities for students to volunteer citywide, which appealed to Bustamante as she relocated from Chicago and was seeking ways to give back in her new city. “My passion was – and is – helping people who might not be able to help themselves,” she says. By the time Bustamante earned her bachelor’s degree in 2006, her philanthropic efforts led UArizona’s Center for Student Involvement and Leadership to create an award in her honor. By 2012, at just 27, she was tapped by the American Lung Association to serve as executive director in San Diego. She eventually made her way back to Phoenix in 2016, and in 2018, accepted the role of vice president of development at American Heart Association. “In 2019, I made the decision to come to ACCEL as it gave me the chance to empower those with developmental disabilities through access to technology, education and evidence-based treatment, thereby realizing my passion,” says Bustamante, who also holds a leadership role on the UArizona Alumni Association Governing Board and is an alumni committee volunteer for the American Express Leadership Academy in her free time. “Amid COVID-19, much of my time in recent months has been focused on delivering supplies to families across the Valley with Jewish Family & Children’s Service and volunteering with ACCEL’s SOS Committee,” Bustamante says.


So Scottsdale! September ‘20



Partner and Arizona Chair, Quarles & Brady LLP Real Estate Practice Group

In response to COVID-19, Valley residents – including Jason Wood – have worked together in an effort to help vulnerable populations across the state. “Arizonans are resilient, but now, more than ever, those of us who can need to lend a helping hand,” says Wood, a member of the Thunderbirds, which recently donated $1 million in emergency funding to assist Arizona charities, including Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley, St. Mary’s Food Bank, and St. Vincent de Paul. The attorney, who is a partner at Quarles & Brady LLP as well as chair of its Arizona Real Estate Practice Group, was taught resilience and leadership by example from his mother. A one-time homemaker, she went back to school, earned her MBA and became a successful financial adviser after her husband passed away when Wood was just 2. This lesson has carried Wood, an Arizona native who grew up in Tucson, through much of his life. After earning his bachelor’s degree from the University of Arizona in 2003 and a law degree from the University of Texas at Austin in 2007, Wood set his sights on practicing real estate law in his home state of Arizona. “Nothing like launching a real estate career during the biggest economic crash in our lifetime,” Wood says. “There were some rough moments, but ultimately it was a blessing in disguise, as I found my greatest passion was helping my clients create something tangible that would benefit our community.” Woods began to seek out opportunities to help outside of the office as well. He began volunteering for various local charities and eventually joined the boards of directors for both Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona and the Foundation for Senior Living, positions he holds today while – along with wife, Anna – raising three boys under 6. “My mom taught me to lead by example,” Wood says. “I want to do the same for my kids.” So Scottsdale! September ‘20





Carmen Rayis, PA-C is passionate about helping people. She utilizes her medical training as well as her cosmetic training to deliver balanced, beautiful, and healthy results. Skin cancer—while an extremely important part of primary care—is often neglected. Carmen is now performing yearly skin exams at Scottsdale Medical Center and is very comprehensive in her personalized approach. Carmen graduated Summa Cum Laude in Biology/Chemistry from the University of Arizona, and completed her Master’s degree in Physician Assistant Studies from Arizona School of Health Sciences in Mesa. Carmen is licensed to practice medicine in Arizona and is board certified with the National Commission of Certification of Physician Assistants. She is also a licensed aesthetician with the Arizona State Board of Cosmetology and laser certified. An advanced injector of neuromodulators and dermal fillers, she specializes in facial aesthetics, cosmetic dermatology, and skin care. Her dermatologic surgical skills are reflected in her gentle approach with patients. Carmen is also an aesthetic clinical trainer on injectable products and procedures. Carmen believes in delivering natural looking results for her patient — her thorough approach to facial rejuvenation begins with consideration to overall facial balance, providing customized solutions to optimized natural beauty.


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There’s no doubt that Scottsdale and Paradise Valley have the most sought-after real estate in the Valley of the Sun. Whether you’re ready to sell, purchase your first home, or are a seasoned homebuyer, the area has experienced real estate agents well-qualified for the task. From honing in on the fine details of selling and purchasing to helping you close the deal, each realtor is an expert in the field. Here, meet the best in the business – the Valley’s Real Estate Superstars.


Kathy Reisdorf and Cindy Metz with Reisdorf Metz & Partners at Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty Kathy Reisdorf and Cindy Metz are the Valley’s Dynamic Duo when it comes to the real estate market, earning the phrase: “Together we are stronger.” With an almost 30 years of combined experience, these veteran Realtors are once again in the top 1% for 2019. Their business is almost completely referral driven, speaking volumes to their clients’ satisfaction. “Our clients’ kids are now buying and selling homes with us. We attribute this privilege to the fact that we constantly strive to exceed expectations,” says Kathy. Clients and their referrals are the backbone of the Dynamic Duo’s success; every decision is made in the best interest of the client. With tremendous integrity and loyalty, the team is committed to connecting their clients with the right home to fit their lifestyle and needs. The client is always #1 with Cindy and Kathy. “We will always do our best to do the right thing, at the right time, for the right reason,” Kathy says. “Agreed,” Cindy says. “No one works harder for their clients— we treat them like they are our family and always do what is in their best interest.” These powerhouse Realtors have many prestigious accomplishments and awards, including Best of The Valley 2020 Winner for Top Producing Realtor by Arizona Foothills Magazine and the Excellence Award from US Directory of Real Estate 2020. Additionally, they were named #22 for Medium Groups from RealTrends and Top Units for 2018 and 2019 by Scottsdale Women’s Council of Realtors. The Dynamic Duo is often asked to do remote previews for clients via FaceTime, which has been a very effective way to show properties. Virtual open house events and showings are a popular way to social distance while still shopping for a dream home. They also utilize professional videos to help buyers in other states understand the flow of a home. “It is not our intention to be the biggest, we simply want to be the best. We understand that moving can be stressful under the best of circumstances. Because of this, we work very hard, to ensure that our clients have a positive real estate experience with our team. We build long term relationships with our clients,” says Cindy. “We have a great working relationship and sincere admiration for one another—and we have a lot of fun working together,” Kathy says. To contact Kathy Reisdorf call 480.797.4977; to contact Cindy Metz call 602.803.2293 or visit


Michael Banovac, Managing Partner at RMB Luxury Real Estate, specializes in residential sales, remodeling, and new home construction in Paradise Valley and Scottsdale. “The pandemic has caused a unique shift in the market. High priced homes in the $3 million dollar plus range are moving like we haven’t seen in years because of record low inventory paired with record low interest rates,” Michael explains. Whether it’s buying, selling, remodeling, and/or building from scratch Michael and his team can help you every step of the way. In fact, over the last 8 years RMB has acquired, built, remodeled, and/ or sold over 125 homes with a value in excess of $100,000,000. “One of the things that makes me and my team at RMB Luxury Real Estate unique is that we touch every part of residential real estate. We’re licensed commercial and residential contractors, we have an amazing interior designer, Debra Richardson, who assists our clients if they choose to use her talents, and we have access to some of the best furniture available to stage your home,” Michael says. Armed with extensive market knowledge and a huge rolodex of contacts, Michael’s primary goal is to serve his client. “I always ask my clients what is most important to them, and then I do everything in my power to realize that goal in pursuit of their success.” Michael’s drive and passion for real estate has put him at the top! In 2015, he was the youngest primary listing agent in the State of Arizona to have successfully closed a residential property for just under $3,000,000. Michael was named a 2018 and 2019 honoree for 40 Under 40 by the Scottsdale Association of Realtors for his business success, professional leadership, community engagement, and industry involvement. Additionally, Michael has been featured in a variety of local and national media outlets including CNN, TIME, Fortune, Yahoo Finance, and The Street. He was named, as well as served, as a 2017 Tour Director and the 2020 Co-Chair of the Paradise Valley Luxury Home Tour. “I love to infuse fun in my work because the home buying or selling process can be stressful, but it can also be exciting. The art of how every element blends into an elegant masterpiece—from the furnishings, the photography, and the ad copy—all of it should stimulate the senses and make the buyer and seller excited about the process,” Michael says. To contact Michael Banovac, call 602.571.4888 or visit


Lisa Roberts with Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty No one will work harder for your real estate needs than Lisa Roberts. A Certified Luxury Home Designation Specialist (CLHMS), she is also a Certified Residential Specialist (CRS), among the highest designations a Realtor can hold. The keys to Lisa’s success are communication with her clients and education. She stays up to date with the crazy real estate market week to week and educates herself daily on trends and innovative thinking. A self-coined over-communicator, Lisa holds herself to the highest standards. “I work to be one step ahead of my client at all times. I answer my phone and don’t go to bed until everything is taken care of for the day,” she says. Lisa’s tenacity and hard work for her clients is why she is in the Top 10 Individual Realtors in Arizona. She was recently recognized as a Top 10 Realtors for Volume sold in Arizona by through RealTrends in the Wall Street Journal and Newsweek. Additionally, she was named a Top 16 Women Realtors in Arizona three years in a row by Women’s Council of Realtors. Lisa treats her clients with the utmost respect, truly caring about their happiness and wellbeing. “Helping clients with one of the most important financial decisions is something I do not take lightly.” Each transaction—whether she is assisting a buyer or seller— Lisa treats as her own personal home. “I make the process as seamless as possible. Everyone knows it’s such an important financial decision when buying or selling a home and working with an agent who will be responsive and has the proven track record is key.” “Currently, there is very little inventory, and people from out of state are coming to AZ. Now that people can work remotely, coupled with taxes and interest rates being so low, they realize that Arizona has so much to offer. Over 50% of the closing sales are buyer coming from out of state. We have over 1,000 more properties under contract compared to this time last year, with far less inventory,” Lisa explains. To learn more about Lisa Roberts, other homes she has sold, and reviews from past clients please go to https://www.zillow. com/profile/lisaazhomes/. Call Lisa and mention So Scottsdale to receive $1,000 credit back on the buy or sell of your next home! To contact Lisa Roberts, call 480.232.3291 or


*Marketing Outstanding Real Estate Kim Leinweber, Tracey Gray, and Laura Ingram with Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty Ranked among the top performing teams at Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty every year since 1999, The Team with MORE is a top choice in the real estate market. As sisters and founding partners of The Team with MORE, both Kim Leinweber and Tracey Gray were awarded Russ Lyon “Rookie of Year” their first year in the business. With new team member, Laura Ingram, The Team with MORE delivers results with unparalleled customer service. “We’re all about action. While there are many Realtors in the Valley, we differentiate ourselves by our attention to detail and our willingness to jump in and get things done. We will do everything in our power to make sure our clients have a first-class experience— from getting to a showing a bit early to making sure beds are made and the patio is swept, to previewing all potential homes prior to taking out a buyer.” Prior to real estate, Kim worked in sales and marketing in the tech industry. Tracey has an MBA in finance, working in mergers and acquisitions. Laura is an experienced entrepreneur and was previously recognized as a “Top Woman in Business” by the Promotional Marketing Industry. “Real estate allows us to use our business principles to deliver highly specialized service to our clients.” The Team uses analytical tools to assist clients in making factbased decisions with the most current market data. “The market is extremely active right now, albeit with record low inventory in all price points. Information is key in this quickly changing market; we bring bank-grade analytical tools to help clients make the most informed decisions.” Corporate relocations—where time is of the essence—are a specialty for the Team. Buying or selling, they handle all the details, whether it’s getting a home ready to sell or coordinating school visits, physician referrals, and contractors to help buyers get settled. “From our first meeting until the keys are handed over, we take care of every intricate little detail so our clients don’t have to.” One of the Team’s past clients sums it up: “The Team with MORE took the weight off our shoulders and made buying and selling our homes a breeze.” Contact Kim Leinweber at 480.980.1427 or Tracey Gray at 602.980.2243 or Laura Ingram at 480.205.4855, or visit


Christine Espinoza of RE/MAX Fine Properties Christine Espinoza works with buyers and sellers not just locally, but nationally and worldwide. A Realtor for over 23 years, she has earned numerous designations and awards due to her experience, hard work, and loyalty to her clients. Christine’s experience is extensive—not only is she a Valley native, but she has been around the real estate business all her life as her father owned several real estate brokerages. Her connections to the community make her a valuable resource for much more than simply finding the perfect house and neighborhood. As a Master Certified Negotiation Expert—a designation that only a small percentage of Realtors have—Christine has spent hundreds of hours learning, practicing and honing her negotiation skills. And she stays on the cutting edge of real estate with numerous designations and certifications, going above and beyond of the required yearly educational hours. Christine has received multiple awards based on production from RE/MAX International, the last award was including the Chairman’s Club award. Also, from RE/MAX Fine Properties she received the Technology award for her innovative marketing and use of social media, internet, and video. Christine was also named One of the 50 Most Influential Women in Business by AZ Business Magazine. Christine utilizes social media to not only showcase and market her listings but also as a tool to connect her community. She interviews business owners and shoots videos at local hotspots. Whenever there’s an opportunity to help those in need, she utilizes her platform to collect donations and gather volunteers to assist local charities. “I truly care about my clients and put their needs and best interests first. I still get excited about finding my clients the perfect home or coming up with creative marketing ideas for my listings. I wake up every day loving what I do and sleep well at night knowing I’ve done my best and have helped people along the way,” Christine says. “Surprisingly, the market is hotter than ever right now. We have people from all over the country moving here, over 30% just from California,” Christine says. “Also, I’ve been selling homes to locals who have been quarantined in their homes for the last 6 months with many months ahead of working from home and they want a change—a new house to fit their new lifestyle. These factors combined with the low interest rates, and low inventory, we have a sellers’ market that is on fire!” Contact Christine Espinoza at 602.989.7492, or visit

RESPECTFUL. RELIABLE. RESOURCEFUL. Marnie Rosenthal with Team Marnie Luxury Real Estate at Launch Real Estate

A trailblazer in real estate, Marnie Rosenthal with Team Marnie Luxury Real Estate is a results-driven professional, philanthropist and former Sales Engineer tirelessly working to lift and support her community and advocate for her clients. Recently awarded Top 30 Producing Real Estate Realtor, Marnie has moved large volumes of property in the Scottsdale, Paradise Valley, Phoenix, Cave Creek and Fountain Hills areas for over 14 years. For Marnie, it is more than a profession – real estate is her true passion. Marnie’s world-class marketing systems are dynamic and adaptive in response to the everchanging nature of the market. Her keen ability to remain attuned to the complexities of the market made it possible to make quick judgement calls and adjustments to marketing. Not only does Marnie utilize her wide-reaching network of resources to stay knowledgeable of leading-edge technology, changing regulations and emerging trends in the real estate industry, she is also fluent in Spanish. With keen analytical experience and a creative viewpoint for finding unique solutions, Marnie uses her Midwest born-and-raised work ethic to set her listings apart and advocate for her client’s needs. Year after year, her drive to excel and provide superior service are why her clients entrust her to buy and sell their dream home and often refer their family and friends to her. “Not only is a referral a huge compliment,” Marnie says, “it is a veritable testament to the level of hard work and tremendous results Team Marnie achieves.” Marnie strives to give back to her community and lives by the phrase: “Your greatness is not what you have, but in what you give.” She serves on committees and volunteers to personally prepare and serve food, tutor, and acquire donations for toiletries and household items for those in need. Marnie’s philanthropic passions were ignited even further this year due to the current world events, and in turn, she has been supporting and donating to first responders, healthcare workers, and other frontline heroes. It is no surprise that with these core values and extraordinary drive, that Marnie has earned elite Realtor status. “I strive daily to be a true resource for my clients by advising them on the best path forward, and holding their hands through their emotional journey,” Marnie says. “I love my community. In all things I do, I believe my actions speak louder than words.” To contact Marnie Rosenthal and Team Marnie Luxury Real Estate, call 480.298.2971 or visit

EXCEEDING YOUR EXPECTATIONS Holly Henbest with the Henbest Team

Holly Henbest and The Henbest Team are experienced and savvy. They are experts in all aspects of the real estate business and are driven to innovate and exceed expectations. “We are results oriented from start to finish. Whether you’re buying or selling a home, you can feel confident that our goal is to ensure your goals are met or exceeded,” says Holly. Now more than ever having a Dream Team like the Henbest Team is critical, with each Team member bringing unique talents to support each client’s unique needs. “These last few months have been challenging, but the housing market has been exciting. Demand is great and inventory is at all-time lows. While results vary in different price ranges and neighborhoods, in general, homes are selling fast, and sometimes in just a few hours for over list price.” Holly explains, “We always have a Realtor available to immediately show a home to our buyers, and our Staging and Listing Team is focused on ensuring that all of our listings showcase the critical features and lifestyle of the home we are representing to result in a top sale price.” During COVID, the Henbest Team has been doing all they can to support small businesses and restaurants both indirectly by promoting them on social media and directly by purchasing products. For example, “We supported our favorite local Pizza Restaurant, Il Bosco, by taking pizza dinners to several shifts at Mayo Hospital and Target to show our support to the hospital and essential service workers.” Having fun, being excited and her competitive nature are keys to Holly’s success and why clients adore her. She invites everyone to follow The Henbest Team and Holly on social media. “We do a tremendous amount of marketing, but the majority of our clients come from referrals, which means so much to us because it shows that our clients trust us and appreciate us.” By challenging herself and her Team to make every purchase or sale better than the last, it is no surprise that Holly—a Certified Luxury Market Specialist—is in the Top Half of 1% of Realtors in Arizona, ranked #8 for Best Real Estate Social Media by Property Spark, ranked #24 by Phoenix Business Journal, and ranked a Top 10 Realtor in Phoenix Magazine Best of Valley. If you want the best representation, look no further than The Henbest Team. Holly says, “We don’t just make deals happen, we ensure they are done correctly, and you enjoy the process.” To contact Holly Henbest, call 480.266.8785 or visit


Kelly Griffin Porter of RE/MAX Fine Properties Focused on achieving exceptional results in the fast-changing real estate market, Kelly Griffin Porter does whatever it takes for her clients. “I love solving problems and finding solutions. My favorite part of this career is the negotiating—I love getting the ‘win’ for my clients!” Kelly’s vast network and her expertise in real estate gives her an advantage beyond the standard searches, allowing her to go above and beyond for her clients. “Buying and selling homes is extremely emotional for people. I like to keep everyone calm and find solutions. I always come to the conversation with a ‘fix,’” she says. Virtual showings are the new normal these days, and Kelly is savvy with technology. She assists buyers to comfortably buy without physically seeing the home. “It’s an art. You have to over give information on area, dimensions, birds eye views, and more. It’s definitely the new way of selling real estate!” For sellers, Kelly positions the home as a unique masterpiece and its own must-have brand to achieve top dollar. Her innovative mindset and in-depth knowledge of the market put her at the top. Combined with her marketing genius, great eye for detail, and impeccable work ethics, has earned Kelly 5-star reviews on Zillow,, Facebook business, and Google from both buyers and sellers. “Mindset is absolutely everything. I see the best in everything. I don’t get upset about things I cannot change. If I can change a situation, I do it. If I cannot, I move through it with a smile and positive vibes!” It is this mindset that has earned Kelly numerous recognitions including RE/MAX Big Impact award, RE/MAX 100% club, RE/ MAX Platinum club, and RE/MAX Executive club. Additionally, Kelly was named a 2018 SO SCOTTSDALE SUPERSTAR, Who’s Who in Real Estate by SCOTTSDALE Homeowner Magazine, and featured in Real Estate Agent Magazine in May 2017. As a way to give back to her community, Kelly volunteers with St. Mary’s food bank, a cause near and dear to her heart. She also helps to collect supplies—new hygiene products and clothing—for Phoenix Rescue Mission. “Success is accomplishing my clients’ goals. It’s not about me. It’s always about what my client wants!” To contact Kelly Griffin Porter, please call 602.739.5060 or visit


Wendy Ortiz with Wendy Walker Fine Properties Now, more than ever, we have information at our fingertips and news from platforms that throughout history have never been available. It’s easy to be confused with how the real estate market is doing, given all the conflicting sources out there. Arizona Real Estate is VERY STRONG contrary to what you may have heard lately. Wendy Ortiz of Wendy Walker Fine Properties — part of the #1 Team for Coldwell Banker in Arizona — gives us the straight facts. *According to NAMB (National Association of Mortgage Brokers) guess what demographic makes up for 45% of all loan applications. Millennials! For 2020-2021 National Association of Realtors has determined that buyers between 26-39 years old are in their peak buying years and wealth building. Contrary to just two years ago, the media touted that Millennials do not want to be homeowners- that is just not the case. *California had the highest out-migration than any other state in the country resulting in a healthy influx of home buyers to the Valley of the Sun. According to Sept. 2019, 200 people a day are moving to Arizona. By 2026 our population is estimated to be over 8 million. *Low Interest Rates initiates the perfect recipe for “time to buy.” Many are saving hundreds of dollars monthly by refinancing alone, much less moving from Los Angeles where a $1,000,000 home at 1000 sq. ft. including taxes, payment is approx. $5200.00/ month. Conversely, in Arizona the same $1,000,000 including tax payment would run you about $4100.00. *Inventory is historically low in Maricopa County, but showings are up 40% according to Data shows that’s an increase of 2% over last year at this time. Homes of all levels are receiving not only multiple offers but selling over asking price. We are very aware as a team, how important it to be strategic, swift and strong when wanting to buy or sell your home. These past few months have been a very real and trying experience for all of us. Not to overlook that we have been in a pandemic there is no doubt. Historically, no matter the depth of the economic fears, people will ALWAYS need a place to live. An economic downturn does not equate to a housing downfall. To contact Wendy Ortiz, please call 480.695.3709 or visit


Michelle Asterino with Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty As a Realtor for 17 years, Michelle Asterino is known for her long-term connections with lenders, title companies, inspectors, stagers and other Realtors. “Working together as a team has always been important to me. Communication is the key to a successful close of escrow.” Specializing in residential real estate, Michelle works with buyers, sellers, relocation, and investors. “We are a hot market and I think we have stayed that way through this pandemic because it is still a very desirable area to live. You can find housing at different price points in different parts of the valley; people coming from CA, WA, NY, NJ, CO and IL find it to be very affordable with an amazing lifestyle,” she explains. Michelle strives to give her clients a stress-free experience, handling many things behind the scenes so they never have to worry about the day-to-day issues that arise. Selling or buying a home is very personal and it is always emotional; I am sensitive to that. My clients know we are in this together and their best interests are my first concern. Michelle spares no expense on marketing, using only the best photographers, drone and videographers in the business. “Marketing is key. You have to capture the house at its best and highlight its features; the quality of photos is very important.” With her hands-on approach, it is no surprise that in 2019 Michelle was recognized as one of the top 3% of Realtors at Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty. No stranger to volunteering, Michelle was involved with National Charity League with her daughters, and recently became involved with Kitchen On The Street, helping kids in schools get food and hope on weekends. She also started working with 2020 Pandemic™, a local charity that sells hats and T-shirts with a large portion of the proceeds going to the true heroes, the people who work at our local Honor Health hospitals. “When I look back on my day, I hope I was able to make someone smile or bring a bit of happiness to their day.” Michelle says. “I love getting up each day and seeing what I need to do and who I can help. I love not knowing how the next phone call could be the start of a new friendship. I have been lucky to call most of my past clients my dear friends; this career has truly changed my life.” To contact Michelle Asterino, call 602.380.6420 or email

EQUESTRIAN PROPERTY SPECIALIST Josie Pakula with Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty

As a horse owner herself, luxury equestrian property specialist Josie Pakula relates to her clients on a personal level. “It’s a real passion for me because horse property real estate is such a niche market that it really takes an agent who knows everything there is to know about horses,” says Josie, who has four horses – Gunny, Owen, Janis, and Ellie Mae. Josie is above the competition, with her hardworking enthusiasm and stellar target marketing efforts to a very specific audience. She holds an advantage over others thanks to her comprehensive knowledge and ongoing relationships with horse industry contacts, including numerous elite equestrian networking groups. Doing so affords her and her clients off-market access to properties that fit all of their wish list criteria for the perfect luxury equestrian property. After earning her master’s degree in nursing and an MBA, Josie served eleven years in the U.S. Army, first as a combat medic and then an officer in the Army Nurse Corp (airborne). Returning to civilian life, she worked as a trauma nurse before becoming a stay-at-home mom. “In 2010, I had the itch to work again to basically support my horse habit. Becoming a real estate agent is the best decision I’ve ever made,” she says. Dedicated to client satisfaction, Josie works primarily by referrals and repeat business. Clients appreciate her honest, realistic advice, knowing she truly has their best interests in mind. Her tenacity and determination to help her clients are what puts Josie in the top 1% of America’s Top 100 Real Estate Agents. It is no surprise that she was voted 2019 Neighborhood Favorite Real Estate Agent by Nextdoor and awarded Top Women in Real Estate for the third time. Josie received her broker’s license in January 2019, giving her extra in-depth knowledge to help her clients. “I owe it to my clients to be more knowledgeable, resourceful, and connected,” she says. Conveniently living close to WestWorld of Scottsdale – home to some of the most prestigious horse shows in the country – Josie is the natural choice for any horse enthusiast wanting to buy or sell an equestrian property. Above all, Josie loves helping people to make the right decisions. “It’s in my DNA.” To contact Josie Pakula, call 480.223.3633 or visit


Allison Cahill of Allison Cahill & Partners Luxury Properties at Walt Danley Christie’s International Real Estate Realtor Allison Cahill possessed the experience, market insight, and adaptability to provide client-focused service. She has a deep understanding of the Valley’s luxury market, a listing agreement, the specific needs of staging a home, and all other fine points to give her clients the best in real estate services. “Prior to entering the luxury real estate market, I was a Corporate Attorney in Chicago. This taught me valuable skills in how to negotiate effectively, and quite frankly, how to spot a lie or a bad deal from a mile away. In other words, I’m very much a nononsense kind of gal,” Allison says. Allison’s business, first and foremost, is about responding to the needs of her clients. “The real estate market, while still strong, did change in response to the pandemic. My ability to adapt to changes and respond directly to the evolving demands of my clients has been a key element of my business practice, and it’s something I take great pride in,” she says. Recently, Allison has been selected to be a part of the prestigious Leadership Academy for the Scottsdale Association of Realtors, which works to shape community leaders. In addition, she is a member of the Scottsdale Chamber of Commerce, a sponsor of the Women in Leadership Series, and has been appointed to the SAAR Global Council, which incentivizes international buyers to buy in the local market. This past year, Allison Cahill & Partners has been expanding into Northern Arizona, most notably in Prescott and Show Low. Additionally, she and her team have had a record sales year—up 388% from last year. “Without positive feedback from clients and greater community awareness of my client-oriented business, this would not have been possible, and I am extraordinarily grateful for that.” “My team is well-equipped to not just navigate this buoyant seller’s market, for buyers and sellers alike, but is also prepared for what might come in the future. While I’m quite optimistic about the current market trends, I am always going to be transparent and knowledgeable to my clients about the market in which they’re buying/selling. So, in the unlikely event of a reversal of market trends, I’ll have the resources and insight to make sure my clients make the best decision they possibly can,” Allison says. To contact Allison Cahill, please call 215.262.7066 or visit


Jeffrey Serpa with Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty Truth, honor, and loyalty are the principles that has helped Jeffrey Serpa establish himself as a successful real estate agent. “There is nothing we cannot overcome or find a solution for when I am open and truthful with my clients.” Specializing in residential resale and new home purchases, Jeffrey is also a pro when it comes to corporate relocation with buyers and sellers. His experience spans the Valley with a focus on Scottsdale, Cave Creek, and Paradise Valley. Jeffrey is far from timid when it comes to negotiating the best deal for his buyers, while his understanding of the market allows him to effectively achieve top dollar for his sellers. When it comes to looking for a house in a competitive market, Jeffrey’s knowledge about highly desirable markets, hidden communities, and off-market properties is second to none. In fact, a significant portion of his business comes from buying and selling off-market inventory. “I’m not a stranger to knocking doors, pounding phones, and “shaking the bushes” as my father always said. You want to find something no one else knows about–let’s find it together! And I promise we will have fun along our journey!” Jeffrey’s hard work ethic is apparent with every transaction. In 2019, he was recognized as one of Scottsdale’s Top 40 Agents under 40 in 2019 and was also awarded Top Sales Agent and “Best Negotiator” with his previous brokerage. He regularly volunteers at Habitat For Humanity, Special Olympics, and RAPAC (Realtors of Arizona Political Action Committee). “We are blessed to live in such a robust and healthy real estate market here in Arizona,” Jeffrey says. “More interestingly, Phoenix has established itself as a beneficial corporate business infrastructure that is requiring thousands of jobs and increased housing needs that will last long into the future. Arizona relocation numbers exponentially increase year-over-year and more people are discovering the incredible lifestyle they can enjoy by living in Arizona.” Jeffrey works with seasoned real estate clients, investors, first time home buyers, and everyone in between. “Each client has specific goals they wish to achieve and if I can assist in any part of that movement, I consider myself successful,” he says. Photo credit: Odysea Aquarium. To contact Jeffrey Serpa, call 480.689.8901 or email


Bee Francis, Kathleen Benoit, Anne Morrissey & Karen Baldwin with Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty The Power of 4 consistently ranks as the top producing real estate team in the Desert Mountain community. With more than 100 years of combined experience in a variety of competitive markets, their unmatched expertise and focused attention gives them an edge over the competition. All 4 team members—Karen Baldwin, Anne Morrissey, Kathleen Benoit, and Bee Francis—are members of Desert Mountain and live on the property year-round, allowing them to show a home at a moment’s notice. “It’s a fabulous community; truly a one of a kind lifestyle,” says Bee. “When someone is looking to buy a home at Desert Mountain, they want experience, knowledge, a good listener, someone who is persistent, and is there 24/7 for them. That’s me and that’s the Power of 4,” Karen says. Previously, Karen was Senior VP of a company and responsible for their marketing and video, giving her a tremendous foundation. Bee also comes from a background in marketing. Anne began her real estate career in New York, before moving to the Valley in 2001. Kathleen served the luxury home market in the distinguished communities of the San Francisco Peninsula and Chicago’s North Shore. Prior to this, she was a marketing executive in the Dallas Commercial Real Estate community. The Power of 4 is hands on and goal oriented, helping their clients through the whole process, no matter how long it takes to find the right home or how quickly a property sells. “Putting the needs of our clients at the top of the list is paramount!” Anne says. The Team’s drive to provide exceptional service shows. They are consistently recognized as a Top Team in the Valley by the Women’s Council of Realtors and The Phoenix Business Journal. Additionally, the Power of 4 was recognized in the Top 1000 Realtors in the US in the Wall Street Journal and Top 1% of Russ Lyon Realtors. At every closing, the Team donates to the Russ Lyon Charitable Foundation whose goal is to provide meaningful and valuable service within the AZ community. “We are seeing more people become full-time residents with many younger families that work from home. People from larger cities are looking for more space and privacy,” says Kathleen. To contact The Power of 4, call 602.708.7300 or visit


Sue Shapiro with Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty Real estate comes naturally to Sue Shapiro. She grew up in AZ and her late mother—Ellie Shapiro—was one of the first female Realtors selling luxury homes in the area. “Every Sunday, for as long as I can remember, my mom held open houses. I grew up learning real estate was more of a lifestyle than a traditional job,” Sue says. Clients benefit from Sue’s extensive knowledge of the Paradise Valley, Scottsdale, and Phoenix area market trends. “It’s important to know current values in the areas you serve; it’s not just price per square foot in luxury real estate. Each property is unique and the land value, location, and many other factors can influence the market value,” she says. As someone who is devoted to helping clients with the biggest purchase of their lives, Sue has the expertise necessary to navigate the many moving parts of a transaction. She goes to extra lengths to make the transaction as smooth as possible, crediting communication and availability as two key elements. “Listening to the client is first and foremost to achieve these successful outcomes. Every client has different expectations, and if you can zero in on exactly what they want, you will be successful.” Sue keeps up with the market trends and technology. In addition, Russ Lyon Sotheby’s provides her with the most current tools and marketing materials to keep her ahead of the competition. Since the pandemic started, she uses virtual open houses and videos to help buyers make their choices, sometimes buying sight unseen. “The influx of buyers from other states has kept our market going strong despite the pandemic. If you are a buyer, I wouldn’t suggest waiting for prices to drop, as that probably won’t happen. Also the interest rates are at historic lows,” Sue advises. Sue’s passion for real estate and loyalty to her clients is evident. She has been a top producer in real estate and award winner year after year, since 1984. Currently Sue is in the top 1% of Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty, and with their resources and superior marketing materials, she stays head of the competition. 2019 was an amazing year for her, with 2020 looking to be even better. “You have to be fully committed to be successful in real estate,” Sue says. And she is just that—committed! To contact Sue Shapiro, call 602.809.9242 or visit


Jane Blacker with Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty With the highest degree of professionalism, Jane Blacker helps her clients fulfill their real estate dreams, whether buying or selling. “I listen to what people want in a home and take into account their lifestyle and hobbies to help them with finding the type of home they really want.” With 35 years in real estate, Jane has a formidable reputation and extensive market knowledge in the Scottsdale, Paradise Valley, Cave Creek, and Phoenix areas. She has consistently been a top producer since joining Russ Lyon Sotheby’s in 2001. Jane’s trustworthiness, integrity, and dedication to impeccable customer service have afforded her a vast network of resources to aid clients in any and all transactions. In fact, most of her current business comes from referrals and repeat clients. “I very much love helping people find what they are really looking for. So many of my clients become good friends.” Prior to becoming a licensed Realtor in Arizona, Jane spent 16 years in the Hong Kong real estate market specializing in relocation service for senior executives of Hong Kong based Fortune 500 international companies. She applies this experience to help clients relocate from other states and even globally. Through Russ Lyon Sotheby’s Global Networking Conference and the International Relocation Team, Jane continues to network and assist clients in moving to the Valley of the Sun. “Presently, relocation to our state is very strong, especially those moving from CA. Scottsdale was voted the best place to quarantine because of the open space, the beautiful climate, and that there is no need for public transportation,” Jane says. Jane is very much a people person, with strong ties to the community. She previously volunteered her time with the Scottsdale/ Paradise Valley Family YMCA and the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Scottsdale, having served on Board of Directors for both. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of Scottsdale Chamber of Commerce—where she has received awards for volunteerism—and is co-chair of alumni events for Scottsdale Leadership Board. “It is 100% a seller’s market right now. Even in the luxury market there are multiple offers. What they want in a home has changed. People are looking for more space due to so many now working from home and their kids learning remotely,” Jane explains. To contact Jane Blacker, call 480.283.3009 or visit

PASSIONATE & ENERGETIC Eve Treger with Launch Real Estate

Realtor Eve Treger lives by her motto: Do what you love and love what you do. “This drives me in everything I do every day. Real Estate is my passion; it’s what keeps me young and alive.” In the real estate business for 27 years—22 in Arizona—Eve has distinguished herself among the best. She is ranked in the top 100 Realtors in Maricopa county and in the top 1% of AZ agents. Eve is grateful to be a part of Launch Real Estate and was recently awarded their Billboard Award for proudly displaying their name. “I personally handle every aspect of the transaction from start to finish. I am hands on and available at all times,” Eve says. “I love the deal more than the financial reward; the pleasure is in the happiness I receive knowing I exceeded my clients’ expectations.” Eve began her real estate career in South Africa working for her uncle who now owns Sotheby’s South Africa. “He was my mentor—my teacher—and taught me at a young age the thrill of the deal. The pure joy of pairing the buyer and seller.” Eve’s listings always attract a lot of attention, sometimes 50 showings for a single listing! She takes pride in presenting the best possible product and everything that goes along with that—from repairs and touch ups, the photography, staging, and writing an eye-catching description. Through her experience and tenacity, Eve secures homes for clients by outbidding the competition. In the last 12 months, she has single handedly sold 50 homes. Always perfecting her tough negotiating skills, Eve has recently started working in with investor real estate. Buyers find Eve’s wealth of information invaluable. A mom of 3, she has thorough knowledge of every school—public, charter, and private. “It also helps that my husband is a golfer and has educated me on every golf club, private to public,” she says. “When times change you have to re-invent yourself,” Eve says. “Before the epidemic, sales were flowing, people were loving life. Then fear set in and that’s when tough, brutal real estate took over, with limited inventory and a million offers. Creativity, reputation, and experience is key in securing the deal. To have been successful through a pandemic sets me apart from my competitors.” No matter how small or large the sale is, Eve gives 100%. “My success is defined by my amazing husband and family. For me, it’s about doing what I love and loving what I do!” To contact Eve Treger, call 602.697.7663 or visit


Jean-Michel Edery with Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty Private Client Group It is no easy feat to be in the top 1% worldwide at Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty, but Jean-Michel Edery has managed just that. He knows how to listen and guide his clients to the property of their dreams. A luxury market expert and relocation specialist, Jean-Michel has been in real estate since 2003. “You can meet people in any business. What I love about real estate is that I can help people achieve things that are unthinkable,” he says. Jean-Michel’s job is to find the impossible. As a self-coined matchmaker, he works diligently to match a buyer and a seller often before anyone else even knows a home is on the market. He does not rest until his client is happy. With his excellent negotiation skills, Jean-Michel assists clients in scoring their dream home at their price point. Not only do Jean-Michel’s clients receive exemplary customer service, they also benefit from his local expertise and global connections to make any transaction—whether buying a dream home, vacation home, investment property, selling, or relocating—stress-free. With the top name in real estate—Russ Lyon Sotheby’s—behind him, Jean-Michel has the marketing resources to get the most exposure, and bring in top dollar, for a property. He represents all properties—no matter the size or price—with the same exquisite presentation and exposure that the international brand is known for. “Success is measured by how much you enjoy what you do. It is also based on who you surround yourself with; you want a team of the right people that’s why I join Frank Aazami founder of the Private Client Group it was the perfect fit for me,” Jean-Michel says. “The pandemic has illuminated the fact that Scottsdale is a better place to live and to quarantine in. People have been stuck at home and now are wanting a bigger house. Taxes are low and the weather here is always beautiful—you can live here all year round in shorts,” Jean-Michel explains. “Scottsdale is one of the country’s most affluent cities with some of the best restaurants, a golfer’s paradise, and not to mention that the first non-gaming hotel Caesar’s Palace is being built here.” Jean-Michel holds himself to the utmost integrity. He is a tough negotiator, making him the Realtor you want on your side. “I know the game and love to play it, but always by the rules.” To contact Jean-Michel Edery, call 480.747.4795 or visit

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Start your weekend with socially distanced fun at Desert Botanical Garden’s Sonoran Sippin’ events, taking place Sept. 11 and 18. Festivities will include a welcome drink, music, and the opportunity to explore the garden grounds. Plus, you’ll get an after-hours look at the garden’s art exhibit, Wild Rising, which features more than 1,000 animal sculptures made from colorful, recyclable plastic. Additional drinks will be available for purchase at cash bars, and the Patio Cafe will be open at these all-ages evenings. Online reservations and masks are required, and the garden will practice social distancing and reservation limitations. 6:30-9 p.m. Adults, $14.95; youth, $9.95; garden members, free.

So Scottsdale! September ‘20






Scottsdale Quarter’s Sol Mexican Cocina recently rolled out an all-new party pack with food for three to five people. Each pack includes guacamole; a Caesar salad with chicken; six street tacos with a choice of grilled chicken, carnitas or black bean and sweet potato street tacos; and a bottled house margarita, which serves five to six drinks. Available Friday through Monday for $65, this Baja-inspired fare is sure to bring a taste of Coastal Mexico to your dinner table. www.


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

Brunch at Maple & Ash is back, serving up luxurious spins on classic morning-time dishes every Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. For $55 per person, select an entree such as lobster avocado toast, a smoked salmon platter, or Alaskan king crab eggs Benedict to enjoy alongside shareable

plates of beignets, pancakes, and fire-roasted filet mignon. Add bottomless bloody marys, smoked palomas, or mimosas for $30 per person or take your outing to the next level with the IDGAF option ($100), which features some of the most popular menu items – plus a few

surprises along the way (think Champagne and caviar!). While you’re at it, take care of dinner by placing a takeout order for an at-home dinner with Maple & Ash’s Date Night To Go Special ($99), featuring two petite filets, a bottle of wine, and more.


On Sept. 12 at 6 p.m., ZuZu at Hotel Valley Ho will host a socially distanced Beer vs. Wine Dinner. The carefully curated meal will feature wine from Daou Family Estates in Paso Robles, California, and beer provided by Stone Brewing in Escondido, California. Executive chef Russell LaCasce will wow guests with innovative dishes like a barbecue pork bao bun and praline French toast sticks with amaretto cookie gelato. However, the real highlight will be the interactive secret vote following each course, during which attendees will decide which beverage reigns supreme. To upgrade this date night to a staycation, add a room for $99 with the special Beer vs. Wine rate. $99 per person.

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In celebration of local women musicians, The Nash jazz venue has opened enrollment for its all-female jazz musician program. Phoenix Jazz Girls Rising, open to girls ages 10 to 17 and led by saxophonist Mary Petrich and pianist Claudia Bloom, aims to provide an empowering, judgement-free environment for young women to grow as musicians. During the eight-week program, held every Saturday from Sept. 19 to Nov. 7, the group will learn well-known jazz songs and create improvised solos to encourage self-expression. Due to the coronavirus, classes will begin online and move to an in-person environment when, and if, it’s safe to do so. The program will culminate with a public performance at The Nash. $100. www.

Royse Contemporary art gallery – which celebrates its three-year anniversary this month – has unveiled a dynamic multimedia exhibition, Elements of Style II, on display through Sept. 27. Featuring works from 12 Arizona artists, the exhibit showcases vibrant colors and striking imagery, with an eclectic selection of photography, assemblage, painting, and more. The gallery has limited public hours including: 6-8 p.m. on Thursdays, 1-4 p.m. on Saturdays, and 6-8 p.m. for the weekly Scottsdale ArtWalk. Private appointments are available, and a limited number of patrons are permitted in the gallery at once.


So Scottsdale! September ‘20




Upgrade your family dinner with a takeout family meal from Blanco Tacos & Tequila. Available for curbside pickup, each $50 meal pack has enough food to feed a crew of four to six. Savor grilled chicken tacos, green chile pork enchiladas, rice, black beans, guacamole, queso, and chips and salsa, with plenty of fresh corn and flour tortillas. To top it off, add two servings of the fan-favorite Perfect Margarita, made with blanco tequila and Patron Citronge, for an additional $11 or get 50% off all beer and wine orders to go. Call 480.305.6692 for curbside pickup orders.


Old Town’s Blue Clover Distillery has recently reopened its patio with misters, to boot. Enjoy an item from the all-new menu, which includes both build-your-own pizzas and salads, or head to the walk-up retail window, which will remain open for to-go orders. Blue Clover’s handmade hand sanitizer, small-batch vodka and gin, and cocktail kits with bloody mary and gin and tonic varieties are also available for purchase.

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WINE AND DINE IN THE PINES A definitive guide to feasting through Flagstaff


Two hours north of the Phoenix area, Flagstaff offers more than just cooler temperatures and beautiful scenery. There are also a bounty of restaurants to dig into, as this quaint city in the pines is experiencing a culinary renaissance of epically delicious proportions. Here is a look at where to sip, savor and order takeout in Flagstaff this fall.

Tinderbox Kitchen/THAT Place Projects Opened in 2009, Tinderbox Kitchen ( was the first restaurant in downtown Flagstaff’s now-popular Southside neighborhood to offer a more elevated menu and dining experience. In the years since, it’s led the charge to the area becoming a mecca for food and drink. Owner Kevin Heinonen has received multiple accolades not only for the artfully crafted modern American fare and wine program at Tinderbox, but also for his companion concepts next door, Annex Cocktail Lounge and Tourist Home, all under his THAT Place Projects umbrella. Tinderbox began an extensive renovation project in March and will reopen this month with a new look and menu that promises to elevate the concept even higher. The restaurant group is also in the midst of building a fourth concept – Corn & Flour – less than two blocks away. Described as a modern American punk rock-themed taco concept, several of the menu items – including fried avocado as well as banh mi takes on tacos – are currently available at The Annex Cocktail Lounge.

Nomads Global Lounge at Motel Du Beau A hidden gem, Nomads Global Lounge is located in downtown Flagstaff’s historic Motel Du Beau (, which dates back to 1929 and was first imagined as a “motor hotel” for travelers journeying along Route 66. Nomads opened in 2017, and is hard to miss thanks to a funky, artsy copper globe on its patio. The menu features globally inspired small bites made in homage to its melting pot of guests. Standouts include meat and ale pie, African peanut stew, and lemon lavender creme brulee.

Brix Restaurant & Wine Bar Brix ( is contemporary and cool, yet warm and inviting, spotlighting all things local while simultaneously shining a light on big, bold, savory and sweet flavors that will make you swoon. Farm-focused in concept, almost all of the venue’s ingredients are sourced from the local farmers and ranchers of Northern Arizona and the Four Corners region. You’ll find the likes of cornmeal-crusted soft-shell crab, bountiful charcuterie and cheese boards, and a variety of gourmet pasta. As impressive a cocktail and wine bar as it is a dining destination, Brix’s drink menu is an eye-popping 14 pages long.


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

Silver Pine Restaurant & Bar Set among 500 acres of pristine Flagstaff forest, Little America Hotel ( has been making headlines for more than just its location. In recent years, the award-winning hotel completed a more than 14,000-square-foot interior and partial exterior renovation to update the property, initially built in 1973. The enhancements include the addition of Silver Pine, a gastropub-meets-comfort-food stunner – entrees span a savory tuna melt and an Italian muffuletta sandwich – with an expansive patio that offers a view of both the stars and woodlands.

Pizzicletta Housed in a building actually shaped like a slice (and also available at Dark Sky Brewing Company down the street), Pizzicletta ( is a Neapolitan-style pizza spot offering both traditional pies ranging from margherita and pepperoni to more unique offerings such as bacon and shallot and a fan-favorite bee’s knees, which features housemade mozzarella, mascarpone, spicy sausage, sage and local honey. Don’t miss the homemade focaccia or gelato either.

Josephine's Modern American Bistro Josephine’s (, serving up refined American fare, has a frequently changing menu focused on showcasing seasonal produce and seafood. Plus, it has one of the best patios in town as well as two fireplaces lit during wintertime. The extensive wine list has earned Wine Spectator's Award of Excellence for the past six years, making it a great place to pair a bottle with your meal – the menu even offers a wine-pairing suggestion with every entree. Beyond dinner and lunch, weekend brunch is available.

Shift Kitchen + Bar This downtown Flagstaff hot spot is limited to just 34 guests at a time – and even less presently to ensure the safety of guests. Shift’s dinner-only menu ( changes regularly and features shareable plates of progressive dishes that create a modern dining experience through the use of both familiar and exotic ingredients. If celebrating something special, opt for the interactive chef's counter, which is limited to less than eight people and allows guests to watch the chefs cook each course.

Satchmo’s Cajun and BBQ Recognized by Southern Living magazine as the best barbecue restaurant in Arizona, Satchmo’s ( is the spot for beef brisket, pulled pork, barbecue chicken, ribs and more – as long as you aren’t afraid of a little spice. The secret to the venue’s success lies in its infusion of Cajun and Creole flavors. Cast-iron cornbread is made in-house daily and barbecue offerings use hand-blended, housemade rubs before being slow-smoked. Be sure to call head to ensure venue openings amid COVID19. For more information, visit So Scottsdale! September ‘20



RESTAURANT WEEK, RECALIBRATED Local eateries offer both dine-in and takeout options this year



So Scottsdale! September ‘20

The 13th annual Fall Arizona Restaurant Week, which will take place Sept. 18 through Sept. 27, may look a little different than years past. However, it aims to be more delicious – and accessible – than ever, despite the current pandemic. In an effort to ensure the community, including those choosing to stay at home and those taking care of individuals who are at a high risk of developing more severe cases of COVID-19, can take part in the 10-day tasting tour of the state, participating eateries will offer their three-course fixed-price menus for both dine in and takeout. “We feel not only gratitude but also great pride in the fact that the local dining community has showed up again and again in support of our industry since closures and limited reopening mandates,” says Steve Chucri, Arizona Restaurant Association president and CEO. “We are thrilled to see that dining out – whether that means in restaurant or getting takeout – is still such an important part of people’s lives.” More than 40 restaurants across Greater Scottsdale are signed on to take part this year. Most fixed-price dinner menus are $33 or $44 per person, with the cost set by the venue. Some eateries are offering their menus for $33 or $44 per couple, and others are also including to-go cocktail, wine and beer options. Some venues even have recommended wine pairings to enhance each course for an additional cost. According to Chucri, another one of Arizona Restaurant Weeks’ goals is to position Arizona as a top culinary destination in the nation by increasing awareness of more than 8,500 dining opportunities available. “While the event is intended to allow food enthusiasts to explore new culinary opportunities in any way that they feel comfortable dining, certainly this year is also about giving restaurants and local chefs the economic support that they need now more than ever,” Chucri says. Leading up to the 10-day event, the list of participating venues and their planned menus will be posted on the Arizona Restaurant Week website, which is updated daily. All participating restaurants will follow CDC guidelines for safety. For more information or to view menus, visit

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CREATIVE COLLABORATION Husband-and-wife team Nancy and Mark Dabrowski turn wood into art


Scottdale-based artists Nancy and Mark Dabrowski, a husband-and-wife duo, create geometric designs from raw wood, adding ink and metal rods to then juxtapose the colors naturally found in the wood. Their inspiration comes from a plethora of sources: logos, TV, jewelry, magazines, and nature, to name a few. Mark has been drawn to wood since childhood, collecting chess sets made from wood. “My first attempt at making something out of wood resulted in an ugly end table made from a tree trunk that only a mother could love,” he says. In 2005, the couple, living in Illinois at the time, bought a 5-acre property overrun with invasive buckthorn and dead trees in their home state. They began saving much of what Mark cut down, storing it in their barn. Then, with the influence of a friend, the couple began making wooden wall sculptures with the wood from their property. In 2013, the Dabrowskis moved to Scottsdale, bringing all that wood with them. And in 2018, Mark and Nancy – both selftaught in their crafts – started On and Off the Wall Designs (www. to share their art. The couple’s mixed media process involves patience and teamwork. Rarely is a sculpture ready for finishing touches on the first pass. “We start a piece, set it on a table for a day or two, hoping that as we walk past, any changes that need to be made will just come to mind and they usually do,” Nancy says. With the aid of power tools and Mark’s artistic eye, raw wood turns into rectangles, squares, triangles, and circles fused together into larger pieces. “Geometric shapes in the form of raw wood speaks to me,” Mark says. While Mark oversees the power tools and assembly, Nancy does the finish sanding and paints colorful designs with calligraphy ink on individual pieces, which – in the case of mosaics – can add up to painting hundreds of intricate elements. Looking ahead, as members of the Sonoran Arts League, Mark and Nancy are preparing to exhibit and sell their work at the 24th annual Hidden in the Hills Artist Studio Tour, scheduled to take place Nov. 20-22 and Nov. 27-29. They will be guest artists at Sandy Pendleton’s glass studio, and until then, their pieces can be viewed on their website. “COVID-19 has not disrupted our raw material supply chain – all we have to do is go in the garage,” Nancy says. “However, we miss supporting other artists, and we miss the creative energy fellow artists foster.” The Dabrowskis also do commissioned work, and find the most joy in seeing a project to completion – as a team. “We debate until we are both happy with the finished piece, and then I have a moment of pride – that we created that,” Nancy says. “That feeling at the end is the reason I love what we do together.”


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

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In celebration of the 50th anniversary of Italian jeweler Elsa Peretti, the special-edition Small Bone Cuff – a collaboration between Peretti and Tiffany & Co. – is an artful take on a bold autumn accessory. This eye-catching bracelet incorporates an ergonomic silhouette that seamlessly contours to the wrist, with each cuff specifically designed for either the left or right hand. Made from copper, the cuff comes in red, blue, green, charcoal, and black finishes, as well as sterling silver ($995) and 18-karat gold and rose gold ($11,800) options. Its sculptural design, originally launched in the 1970s, was inspired by Peretti’s childhood visits to the Capuchin Crypt in Rome as well as her time in Barcelona near Antoni Gaudi’s Casa Mila, a testament to the designer’s creativity and timelessness. Available online or at Scottsdale Fashion Square. $475. 480.946.9100; So Scottsdale! September ‘20





Achieve effortless beauty with the no-makeup makeup look

Mineral highlighter, Dior, $48 at Neiman Marcus, www. Illuminating primer, Chanel, $48 at Saks Fifth Avenue, www. Finishing powder, RMS Beauty, $34 at Citrine, www. Eye concealer, Saint Laurent, $35 at Nordstrom, www. Clear lip gloss, Fenty, $19 at Sephora, www. Clear brow gel, Anastasia Beverly Hills, $22 at Nordstrom.


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

Permanent Make-up

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BEYOND MICROBLADING As a permanent make up technician and trainer for nearly 30 years I’ve seen many trends come and go. These days one of the first things I hear from people inquiring about services is “I don’t want tattooed eyebrows. I want the soft powdery look that you did for my friend.” This is when I educate the public on the truth about permanent make up and the truth is it’s all tattoo. Years ago when permanent make up was just a fledgling industry in this country many of us worked in the offices of plastic surgeons. We called the procedure micro pigment implantation. Then different techniques were marketed using trade words like soft tap, and recently microblading has been all the rage. Known as the “queen of conservative” My specialty is custom blending colors for each person. Shape, color, technique and science are what create the artistry for beautifully natural eyebrows. Eyelash enhancements. Due to the lockdown most people have lost their eyelash extensions. This is the perfect time to touch up permanent eyeliner before reapplying lashes. I love to create a rich smokey looking lash line rather than a harsh eyeliner look. Safety first. Due to the intimate nature of these procedures safety has always been at the very top of the list. Hospital grade disinfectants are used on surfaces between clients and most importantly all instruments are new, sterile and disposable. Yea! With your safety in mind I will be wearing a mask through your procedure and if you like I will happily provide you with one as well. Because my studio is completely private you need not worry about ever encountering a crowded salon environment.

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What’s old is new again with decor inspired by decades past

Smoky globe table lamp, Renwil, $223 at Nordstrom, www. Sundial Hat print, Getty Images, $650-$1,395 at Jonathan Adler, www. Green crystal vases with gold detailing, Devonia Antiques, $2,400 (set of two) at Neiman Marcus, www. Brass curved nightstand, $199 at West Elm, www. Patterned Persian area rug, Safavieh, $324 at Saks Fifth Avenue, www. Seafoam blade fan, Vornado, $249 at Pottery Barn, www.


So Scottsdale! September ‘20












SILVERLEAF 10412 E Robs Camp Road Scottsdale AZ 85255 6 Bedroom | 7 Bath | 10,975 Sqft | Offered at $7,500,000

PARADISE VALLEY 9421 N 50th Place Paradise Valley AZ 85253 5 Bedroom | 5.5 Bath | 4,853 Sqft | Offered at $2,800,000











ANCALA COUNTRY CLUB 11861 E Desert Trail Road Scottsdale AZ 85259 5 Bedroom | 8.5 Bath | 6,518 Sqft | Offered at $2,000,000



LOS GATOS 8617 E Los Gatos Drive Scottsdale AZ 85255 4 Bedroom | 4.5 Bath | 5,486 Sqft | Offered at $1,995,000









CACTUS GATES 10800 E Cactus Road #39 Scottsdale AZ 85259 3 Bedroom | 3.5 Bath | 3,745 Sqft | SOLD FOR $1,492,787





Director of Marketing Director of Client Care

Director of Expansion


PRESERVE 5684 E Bent Tree Drive Scottsdale AZ 85266 5 Bedroom | 3.5 Bath | 3,570 Sqft | Offered at $775,000

(480) 400-1985 |

Style SHOP



Add whimsy to your wardrobe with this updated take on a nostalgic ’90s trend

Faux wrap dress, The Kooples, $438 at Saks Fifth Avenue, www.saksfifthavenue. com. Gold bangle, Kenneth Jay Lane, $150 at Saks Fifth Avenue. Gold studs, $110 at Johnny Was, www. Bike shorts, Be Proud by BP., $35 at Nordstrom, www. Metallic espadrilles, Sophia Webster, $325 at Neiman Marcus, www. Embroidered raffia clutch, Rafe, $280 at Neiman Marcus.


So Scottsdale! September ‘20




GREAT LENGTHS Long hemlines make headlines this season

Pull-on palm-print, Chelsea28, $69 at Nordstrom, www. Beige wide-leg Bermuda, $29.99 at H&M, Green cutoff cargo, $72 at Madewell, Turquoise biker, $89.50 at J.Crew, Ripped denim, Re/ Done, $225 at Saks Fifth Avenue, www. Black faux leather culottes, Topshop, $55 at Nordstrom.

So Scottsdale! September ‘20




So Scottsdale! September ‘20


LEFT: EARRINGS: Goldtone flower clip-ons, $12.50. DRESS: Silver and gold with sequins, Marc Jacobs, $3,996. HANDBAG: Gray with crystals, Swarovski, $116. SHOES: Gold strappy sandals, Celine, $300. All from My Sister’s Closet, RIGHT: SUIT: Gray, Dolce & Gabbana, $187.50. SHIRT: White button-down, Hugo Boss, $39.95. SHOES: Black with double buckle, Magnanni, $62.50. All from Well Suited,

So Scottsdale! September ‘20


LEFT: HAT: Camel cashmere cap, Loro Piana, $145. NECKLACE: Gold tone and tortoise link, Michael Kors, $34.95. SHAWL: Off-white with fur trim, $79.95. TOP: Off-white cold-shoulder longsleeve blouse, Tibi, $59.95. PANTS: Offwhite linen trousers, Golden Goose, $100. SHOES: Nude suede ankle-strap platforms, Prada, $245. All from My Sister’s Closet, www.mysisterscloset. com. RIGHT: JACKET: Tan knit sports coat, Eleventy, $125. SHIRT: Light blue linen button-down, Armani Collezioni, $49.95. PANTS: Green-blue trousers, Zanella, $69.95. SHOES: Gray canvas loafers with horse belt, Salvatore Ferragamo, $275. All from Well Suited,


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

TOP AND SKIRT: black-and-white gingham set, Akris, $195. BRACELETS: Black acrylic, Marc by Marc Jacobs, $29; White and purple acrylic, Marc by Marc Jacobs $29. HANDBAG: Black and off-white leather tote, Prada, $395. SHOES: Black suede with red platforms, Celine, $95. All from My Sister’s Closet,

So Scottsdale! September ‘20


VEST: Navy puffer, Eleventy, $89.95. SHIRT: Plaid flannel button-down, Alan Paine, $145. PANTS: Tan trousers, Todd Synder, $24.95. SHOES: Brown suede ankle boots, Peter Millar, $62.50. All from Well Suited, www.shopwellsuited. com.


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

LEFT: JACKET: Army green blazer, Rag & Bone, $89.95. TOP: Black three-quarter length sleeve blouse, Theory, $34.95, PANTS: Gray silk with black stripes, Robert Rodriquez, $59.95, HANDBAG: Black bamboo, $59.95. All from My Sister’s Closet, RIGHT: JACKET: Red puffer, Hawke & Co., $34.95. SHIRT: Dark green button-down, Stenstroms, $59.95. PANTS: Black jeans, Raleigh Denim Workshop, $69.95. All from Well Suited,

So Scottsdale! September ‘20


DRESS: Red velvet burnout maxi with tie, Worth, $156. RING: Silver with green quartz stone, $69.95. BRACELET: Gray jeweled cuff, Virgins Saints & Angels, $295. SHOES: Pink velvet Mary Janes, Miu Miu, $145. All from My Sister’s Closet, www.mysisterscloset. com.


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

JACKET: Yellow oversized with black strap, Missguided, $24.95. SPORTS BRA: Black-and-white multistrap, Zella, $17.50. PANTS: Black cropped leggings, Lululemon, $34.95. HANDBAG: Black leather crossbody, Balenciaga, $695. SHOES: White leather fringe mules, Balenciaga, $395. All from My Sister’s Closet,

So Scottsdale! September ‘20



Visit Click current issue.


W H E E L S / WA N T / H AU T E P R O P E R T Y / P L A C E S


With more time to enjoy your favorite wines at home right now, display your growing selection in an innovative Monolith Wine Column from Liebherr. Available in 18- and 24-inch options, with capacity for 75 and 100 bottles, respectively, the seamlessly designed refrigerator features multiple cooling zones; a stainless-steel back wall and door, complete with UV-resistant glass; and an intuitive electronic control panel. Smart features like the InfinityProtection system alert the owner via text or email of any significant temperature changes that may harm the wine, taking automatic protective actions when needed. With luxe finishes and customizable features like night dimming, the wine column takes the humble fridge from a kitchen appliance to a statement piece that enhances the presence of any home wine collection. $5,499-$5,999 at Liebherr, So Scottsdale! September ‘20



2020 CADILLAC XT6 The luxury car maker adds a new midsize three-row SUV BY JIM PRUETER

VITAL STATS 2020 Cadillac XT6 Base price: $52,695

One statement that holds true year after year is that a brand cannot have too many utility vehicles. Cadillac recently introduced the XT6, a less expensive family hauler for those times when the Escalade is more vehicle than you need. At first glance, the XT6 appears underwhelming. The exterior, while not distasteful, is staid at best. The most appealing exterior design choice, however, is the aggressive front end with a blacked-out mesh grille, accompanying light strips, and full LED headlamps. The interior is attractive, with carbon fiber trim and ample soft-touch leather surfaces. As you might imagine, there’s plenty of tech, including night vision, surround vision, and automatic parking assist. Among the more disappointing features are the seats’ short bottom cushions and scant two-way lumbar adjustment, though the seats are heated and cooled. Additionally, the power adjustable tilting and telescoping steering wheel has a limited range of motion. The XT6 is available as a six- or seven-passenger vehicle with either a bench seat or captain’s chairs in the second row. The third row is


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

modest, with room for just two passengers. Cargo space is just 13 cubic feet – enough room for one 24-inch roller bag – but you can fold the third row forward via a power button for more space. The upgraded Cadillac User Experience (CUE) system includes wireless device charging, an 8-inch touch screen, an eight-speaker Bose audio system, a Wi-Fi hotspot, six USB ports, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto. It’s quite easy to use, with sharp graphics and quick response times. On the road, the Sport trim (tested here) was impressively quiet, with pleasantly euphonic intake and exhaust notes under hard acceleration. The standard 3.6-liter, 310-horsepower V-6 engine is paired with a nine-speed automatic transmission. Once underway, the SUV flows along with serenity and agility, coasting over bumps and road imperfections with minimal body lean and confident handling. Overall, the new Cadillac is sensible, responsive, comfortable, and quiet, with ample power. However, it appears to break no new ground in an already crowded segment with excellent luxurious competitors.

Price as tested: $73,295 Engine: 3.6-L V-6 Horsepower: 310 Fuel economy: 17/24 mpg city/ highway Seating: 6-7 Fab features: Easy-to-use CUE infotainment system Quiet cabin and comfortable ride Lots of safety tech




Wilson Creek Manor offers the ultimate Southern California wine country escape BY ALISON BAILIN BATZ

The Temecula Valley, which is just over five hours from Greater Phoenix by car and about an hour from San Diego, is the largest winegrowing region in California’s South Coast American Viticultural Area. Altogether, Temecula Valley boasts more than 40 wineries and 80 winegrowers as well as several golf courses, dozens of fine dining options, and even an alpaca farm. While temperate year-round and with tastes of great wine available virtually 365 days a year, there is perhaps no better time to visit this burgeoning wine country than the fall as it marks the annual harvest season across the region. During harvest, each winemaker and his or her team gathers the year’s best crops from the field and begins the process of making the vineyard’s newest wines. To celebrate, events are hosted by wineries throughout Temecula Valley (current scheduled events will take place outdoors amid COVID-19 to ensure the safety of visitors and staff alike). Certainly, hotels and resorts are taking all CDC-recommended precautions to ensure guests’ safety at this time. For those seeking the ultimate in

a socially distanced Southern California sojourn, consider Wilson Creek Manor. This 12,000-square-foot mansion is in the heart of wine country and just across the street from multiple vineyards, including its namesake Wilson Creek Winery, which many will recognize from Bravo’s The Real Housewives of Orange County and The Millionaire Matchmaker as well as A&E’s Gene Simmons Family Jewels. Accommodating up to 24 guests, the manor features 10 bedrooms, nine of which have en suite bathrooms, as well as pullout sofas in common spaces. Each bedroom also has its own flat-screen TV and many have terraces. The grandest room is the Almond Champagne Suite, also known as the bridal suite. The 1,600-square-foot suite is has its own separate living room, dining table, expansive bathroom, and three-chair salon with mirrors. The manor also boasts a chef’s kitchen with commercial-grade appliances; an indoor game room with a large flat-screen TV, foosball, pool, pingpong, bumper pool, video games, and a poker table; a full-sized indoor bar; a formal dining room; an outdoor basketball court; a gazebo with cozy patio furniture; a pool and heated spa; a commercial barbecue; and a board room. The guest services team works with all groups in advance to arrange catering services or a private chef, bring in floral arrangements, and coordinate in-home massages. It can also assist in booking wine-tasting reservations; arranging wine country transportation by van, bus, trolley, limo or even horse; and set up hot air balloon rides, helicopter tours, and sailing tours in nearby San Diego. There is a two-night minimum required year-round with three nights required during peak seasons and holidays. Prices range from $1,300 to $2,500 per night, plus tax. For more information, visit www. So Scottsdale! September ‘20





So Scottsdale! September ‘20

Located on more than 1 acre of land on a hillside lot, this 8,837-square-foot home, complete with five bedrooms and nine bathrooms, has everything you need for luxurious living. Through the entrance of this recently constructed home sits a cozy living area with a fireplace, a stone statement wall, and unique ceiling beams. One of three sets of disappearing Pella doors leads guests to the first of many outdoor living spaces, complete with stunning mountain views. The gourmet chef’s kitchen features granite countertops and custom cabinetry, as well as two dishwashers, three ovens, and an expansive island with bar seating and glamorous chandelier lighting. The master suite, also on the main floor, includes a fireplace, patio access, and a master bathroom with dual vanities, a sculptural tub, and a walk-in closet with floor-to-ceiling custom cabinetry. Downstairs, a home gym, a spa, a sauna, a bonus room, and a reading nook with a California king mattress are just one elevator ride away. The office, with its elegant built-in bookcases, is decked out in classic wood finishes, with hardwood flooring continuing through the additional bedrooms. Other standout features include an entertainment room with a wet bar and a full-sized refrigerator, a massage room, and a home theater with 12 leather reclining seats. In addition to a balcony outside of every bedroom, other outdoor living spaces include a covered patio with misters and heaters. Between the resort-quality heated spa, negative-edge pool, and gas barbecue, this palatial estate is the ideal place to enjoy the desert sunset. The property also includes a three-car garage and access to the golf course in the gated community of FireRock. 10208 N. Palisades Blvd., Fountain Hills, AZ 85268. Listed for $3,500,000 with Lisa Roberts of Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty; 480.232.3291; lisa@

Cool Deck Restorations

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SOUTHWESTERN SOJOURN Tucson’s top resorts focus on wellness, rejuvenation and restoring one’s Zen


Just a two-hour drive from the Valley, Tucson offers a flowering desert, rolling hills and rugged canyons as far as the eye can see. While most know it as the home to the University of Arizona, globally, it is considered a top tourism destination, with one of Arizona’s only Forbes Five-Star resorts and two of the top destination spa resorts in the world. With each at various stages of reopening amid COVID-19, here’s a look at these relaxing, rejuvenating resorts and how to plan the perfect stay down south.

Miraval Arizona The award-winning Miraval Arizona destination spa resort (www. was founded in 1995 based on a simple vision: Life is more meaningful and enjoyable when physical, emotional, social and intellectual components are in balance. Situated across 400 lush acres near the Santa Catalina Mountains, it is, therefore, an all-encompassing, once-in-a-lifetime experience for the mind and body. There are guest room and suite options on property as well as 16 privately-owned villas. All stays at the resort include three healthy meals a day, all nonalcoholic beverages and accommodations as well as access to three pools (one is a trilevel pool with an acupressure stone walk!), a fitness center, Zen and desert gardens with a labyrinth and a panoramic kiva with fire pit, desert and bike trails, tennis courts, and all gathering places. Optional enhancements that can be added to a stay are plentiful, notably the Purple Sage Ranch Equestrian Center on property. There, guests can take part in private trail rides as well as sign up for equine therapy. There is also a high ropes course and a climbing wall, and daily classes ranging from art and photography to integrative wellness. Likely the biggest star on the property is the 30,000-squarefoot Miraval Life in Balance Spa, which is dedicated to transforming guests through nurturing, rest and renewal and is minimalist by design to maximize the beauty of the surrounding desert landscape. Treatments run the gamut from facials that incorporate Native American ingredients to massages using silk suspended from above to energy healing.

Canyon Ranch Also located near the idyllic Santa Catalina Mountains, Canyon Ranch ( is a year-round luxury vacation destination set across 150 acres dedicated to mental, physical and spiritual life enhancement. Recognized by Travel + Leisure among the top 10 destination spas in the world, the no-tipping resort offers all-inclusive stays catered to guests’ personal wants and health goals. Each stay includes three gourmet meals per day plus snacks, dozens of daily activities and classes, and PHOTO COURTESY OF CANYON RANCH


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

complimentary use of all facilities on property, including hiking and biking trails and wellness presentations. Lined with flowers, cactus gardens, streams, pools and fountains throughout, the resort is limited to just 240 guests at any given time. Offering pathways to health and healing is the primary focus of the resort’s staff, which includes board-certified physicians who work out of the property’s 14,000-square-foot health and healing center. There, guests can reserve physical health assessments, lifestyle counseling, and even bone density screenings. Beyond this more medically-focused center is the stunning 80,000-squarefoot spa complex, which features a Pilates studio, an indoor cycling studio, a full gym, squash and racquetball courts, and a yoga studio. Men’s and women’s locker rooms are complete with sauna, steam and inhalation rooms; whirlpools; private (clothing optional) sunbathing areas; and relaxation lounges. There is also a salon in the spa as well as the main treatment rooms for guests, which offer over 225 services at any given time, including bodywork, massages, aromatherapy, ayurvedic and seaweed treatments, facials and more. Beyond all of this, the property also features a high ropes challenge course with a climbing wall, giant swing and zip line; an 11,000-square-foot aquatic center; a 3,400-square-foot golf performance center with practice areas and technology for swing analysis; seven lighted tennis courts; a basketball court; and three pools.


The Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain This stunning property is one of only two properties in Arizona to earn two Forbes Five-Star rankings for 2020, one for the resort itself and one for the spa. Surrounded by the Tortolita Mountains northwest of Tucson, The Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain (www.ritzcarlton. com) is a secluded retreat in the town of Marana tailor-made for golfers, foodies and those seeking to relax at the spa. The property boasts three golf courses for a total of 27 championship holes; 26 miles of hiking trails; three sprawling pools, including one with a 235-foot slide; five unique eateries; and an expansive spa with gemstone rituals and massages as well as holistic and Native Americaninspired approaches to wellness. Both the suites and rooms, many of which have private terraces or balconies with mountain views, were renovated in recent years to best reflect the Sonoran Desert using natural materials and earth tones. Of particular note are the casitas, which offer large living spaces away from the main resort and picturesque views of the nearby Wild Burro Canyon. Culinary highlights include Core Kitchen & Wine Bar, which serves regionally inspired American cuisine and has an extensive wine list. Fun fact: At breakfast, guests can pick their own citrus from the restaurant’s 42-tree orchard. Other offerings span a Latin grill, a burger bistro and Ignite, a relaxing lounge with live music and daily mixology classes. As with Miraval and Canyon Ranch, the goal of Dove Mountain is to restore balance and provide a respite from the stress of daily life through health and wellness as well as recreation and Epicurean adventures.

So Scottsdale! September ‘20



BREW DEBUTS New-to-market beers in Arizona BY ALISON BAILIN BATZ

September brews excitement for beer enthusiasts as the month celebrates two special days: National Beer Lover’s Day (Sept. 7) and National Drink Beer Day (Sept. 28). Given that, it’s as good a time as any to taste some of the newest beers that have hopped onto Arizona shelves over the past year. Virtual Beer Hug Double Hazy IPA Deschutes Brewery Released in June (because we all needed a virtual hug by then) amid COVID-19, a portion of all proceeds from this limited-edition beer are being donated to World Central Kitchen, a nonprofit that provides support for restaurant employees. Expect some herbal notes but also a surprising hint of tropical coconut. 7.4% ABV. $11.50 for a six-pack. www.

and sage-dotted desert landscapes through the McDowell Mountains. 6.5% ABV. $9 for a sixpack.

Blood Orange Far Beyond Pale Ale PHX Beer Co. Debuting this month, this beer is a fresh, citrus twist on the local brewery’s Far Beyond Pale Ale. Light in body with the aroma of an IPA, the beer is infused with blood orange during the brewing process, creating a flavor combination perfect for the transition from summer to fall. 5.5% ABV. $6 for a pint.

People Power Hazy IPA Arizona Wilderness Brewing Co. All proceeds from this aromatic Indian Pale Ale are being donated to the American Civil Liberties Union. Though a bit tropical, the rich hops make it a great option way beyond the summer months. 6.5% ABV. $20 for a four-pack.

Spare Moment IPA Historic Brewing Company Made in Flagstaff, this IPA is brewed with Comet, Idaho 7, and Amarillo hops, which help infuse it with a full-body flavor and soft bitterness. Also expect a mix of citrus, melon and tropical notes. 6.5% ABV. $11.99 for a six-pack. Papago Desert Sage Orange IPA Huss Brewing Co. Brewed with orange zest, sage and agave to represent the authentic flavors and aromas of the Arizona desert, this Phoenix-made beer was inspired by Aravaipa’s annual October trail run, which goes through both citrus groves


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

First Light Lager Lumberyard Brewing Co. Named in homage to the first rays of light that appear from the mountains to the east of this Flagstaff brewery each morning, this beer is crisp and clean with a hint of hoppy spice and malty overtones. 4.2% ABV. $8.99 for a four-pack. www.

Roadside Grove Mother Road Brewing Co. This seasonal and limited-quantity American Indian Pale Ale gets its kicks from both Route 66 – also called the Mother Road and where the brewery gets its name – and tart grapefruit that’s infused in the beer during fermentation. Expect zest and crispness as a result. 7.2% ABV. $10 for a four-pack. Gilt Lifter Four Peaks Brewing Co. Brewed for fans of the brand’s Kilt Lifter, but only 99 calories, this ale contains the same malty and toasted notes of Four Peaks’ classic Scottish ale without as much gilt – er, guilt. It also has fantastic caramel notes and a hint of bread. 3.4% ABV. $8.99 for a six-pack.




Sophia’s Kitchen delights in bringing Valley residents its take on Italian classics, highlighting seasonal ingredients whenever possible. Among its most popular offerings is the veggie-forward Pasta Primavera ($18). Light, bright and bursting with flavor, the dish starts with fresh linguini made in-house daily and cooked to order. Once al dente, the linguini is paired with a medley of roasted asparagus, broccoli, cherry tomatoes, and white cauliflower. Before being tossed with garlic and olive oil, orange and purple cauliflowers are also added, which not only provide a depth of flavor and vibrant color, but also add antioxidants. Freshly grated Parmesan is offered tableside, and guests may add protein for an additional charge. Gluten-free pasta is available upon request. Sophia’s Kitchen, 17050 N. Thompson Peak Pkwy., Scottsdale; 480.351.7160; So Scottsdale! September ‘20




Ranch Romance is a sweet showcase of Liberty Station’s in-house liqueur program


Liberty Station, an elevated take on a traditional tavern and smokehouse with locations in DC Ranch and Terravita, takes both approachability and adventure into account when it comes to cocktails. “Our signature cocktails, which change semiannually, are always themed around something familiar for our guests,” says Matt Keeler, director of operations. “We also base most of our recipes on popular cocktails that guests have heard of before, so they aren’t intimidated.” The drinks on the current menu are named in homage to the Wild West. Ranch Romance ($10) is among the most popular offerings. “Think of it as a more adventurous cosmopolitan,” Keeler says. “It is one of many cocktails that feature a housemade cordial.” A cordial is another term for a liqueur. Not to be confused with liquor, a liqueur is a spirit that has both sugar and one or more fruits, herbs or other ingredients infused into it. “Ranch Romance substitutes both the cranberry juice and sweet Cointreau liqueur from the cosmo with pomegranate cordial,” Keeler says. “We make it by simmering sugar, Everclear and pomegranate juice until the sugar dissipates but before the alcohol burns off. After it cools, it can be used throughout the day and remade as needed.” The cordial is poured into a shaker and combined with St. George California Citrus Vodka, lemon juice and ice. After a good shake, it is double-strained into a coupe glass. For garnish, an orange peel is rolled to mimic a rose and gently placed atop the concoction. “It’s a light, refreshing way to start the evening, especially on date night,” Keeler says. Liberty Station, two locations:


So Scottsdale! September ‘20



CHEF CONVERSATIONS In the kitchen with Christopher Smith of Merkin Vineyards


Christopher Smith is the executive chef of Merkin Vineyards, overseeing Merkin Vineyards Old Town Scottsdale, Merkin Vineyards Tasting Room & Osteria in Cottonwood, and Merkin Vineyards Pizza Wagon.

Where did you grow up? I was born and raised in Flagstaff and was a member of Sinaloa High School’s (now a middle school) first graduating class in 1993. I initially stayed up north to study political science and journalism at Northern Arizona University. When did you switch to culinary? Growing up, my immediate family and I lived with my great aunt. I loved nothing more than cooking with her but didn’t consider pursuing it professionally until on vacation in Phoenix in the mid-1990s, where I happened across a Scottsdale Culinary Institute ad. Over the next year, I toured the campus, applied and was accepted. Tell us about your culinary journey. After graduating in 1999, I cooked at Robert’s Creekside Cafe & Grill, Reds Sedona Grill, and Los Abrigados Resort & Spa, all in Sedona. I eventually earned the executive chef position at both Los Abrigados and sister property Kohl’s Ranch Lodge in Payson, and then at The Asylum Restaurant in Jerome. I’ve also worked at Fabio On Fire in Peoria and ran my own concept, Seed Restaurant, in Cottonwood. How did you come to Merkin? Arizona winemaker Maynard James Keenan lives in Northern Arizona, so I cooked for him at Red’s, Asylum and Seed several times. Our paths continued to cross, and by 2015 we started talking about collaboration, bringing his wines and my dishes. Our first baby was Merkin Osteria in Cottonwood in 2016, followed by our mobile pizza wagon in 2018 and then our wine bar and small plate spot in Scottsdale in 2019. What’s the secret to your success? Local first, always. We have greenhouses, gardens, orchards, and olive trees across Arizona so we can grow as many of our own ingredients as possible. We even have an airstream trailer growing mushrooms. Merkin Vineyards Old Town Scottsdale, 7133 E. Stetson Drive, Scottsdale; 480.912.1027;

So Scottsdale! September ‘20



ELEVATED INDULGENCES An updated take on comfort food classics


Southern Shrimp & Grits

Grassroots Kitchen &Tap Though executive chef Christopher Collins grew up in Arizona, he trained in the South. A result of his experience is a dish with equal parts Southern and Southwestern flair as the grits are cooked with jalapenos and cheddar cheese, and the shrimp is sauteed with smoky, spiced Tasso ham relish before being served with grilled focaccia for dipping. $22. www.

Bacon Bleu

Cold Beers & Cheeseburgers This half-pound, all-beef patty is impressive on its own, but when the chef adds bacon that has been cured in sugar, caramelized onions, blue cheese crumbles, housemade mayo, fresh baby greens, avocado, and sliced tomato, it becomes next-level indulgent. A bonus: You can substitute the house chips for fries, tater tots, onion rings, or a salad for an added charge. $16.50.

Bubbling Potato Gratin

Maple & Ash Often a standard side dish and made like a casserole, this take on the holiday family favorite gets a considerable upgrade here. It starts with thinly sliced potatoes, which are then layered with thyme and Gruyere and Parmesan cheeses in a cast-iron skillet. Once combined, the contents are baked in the oven until bubbling and lightly browned. Every bite is indulgently rich, creamy, and melt-in-your-mouth good. $12.

Cheddar Jalapeno Biscuits

Craving a little comfort food but sick of cooking up casseroles or following directions on a box at home? Allow the talented chefs across Scottsdale to give you an indulgent yet elevated fix with their contemporary takes on some all-time classic dishes.

Salty Sow Available as both a side dish option and an appetizer, this Southwestern take on a buttery Southern biscuit starts by adding diced jalapeno into the batter from the onset. Then, before baking until flaky, a hefty portion of cheddar is also folded into the mix. Cooked until the tops are golden brown, the biscuits are paired with soft butter and honey and brought to the table for a sweet, spicy and buttery flavor explosion in your mouth. $6.50.

Gnocchi Sorrentina

Marcellino Ristorante Sometimes referred to as the “king of comfort food,” gnocchi is a classic dish in Italian cuisine. While the recipe is simple, it takes a special skill to master the preparation of gnocchi, which are light, fluffy, sumptuous orbs of potato. This blissful dish combines potatoes, flour and Parmigiano-Reggiano. Add in a rich, homemade tomato sauce and melted mozzarella bits, and


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

sandwich is nothing like what you found in your school lunchbox. It starts with the bread, which is Japanese milk bread made in-house at sister restaurant August Rhodes Bakery in Tucson. Then, traditional peanut butter is swapped for housemade peanut butter ricotta fluff. Taking it over the top are the final elements: strawberry jam, blueberry preserves, cinnamon and sugar. $9.

Pumpkin Bread Pudding

The Mission Bread pudding became a standard recipe because all it takes are simple items often already in the pantry: bread, eggs, milk and sugar. Making this version a little less standard is the addition of scotch. After the eggs, milk and sugar, the coated pumpkin-spiced bread is soaked in scotch before baking. It also gets a helping of toasted pepitas, fresh pomegranate seeds, and Villa Dolce vanilla gelato on top. $9.

Fried Pork Chop

the hearty dish soothes the soul with an intoxicating aroma and scrumptious flavors. $26.

Tasty Turmeric Jicama Paleo Fries

Terras Love French fries but cutting back on carbs? Look no further than these nutrient-packed turmeric jicama fries. Both low in carbohydrates and great for gut health, these fries are freshly cut strips of jicama that have been coated with avocado oil, turmeric, sea salt, onion and garlic powders, and black pepper. The strips are then baked until lightly golden brown with a crispy outside layer and served with guacamole that has broccoli for an added health kick. Beyond being paleo, they are also vegan- and ketofriendly. At CIVANA Wellness Resort & Spa. $7. ​

Hash Kitchen A remix of two Southern favorites – chicken-fried steak and biscuits and gravy – this dinner-for-breakfast dish replaces a traditional chicken-fried steak with a boneless, country-fried pork cutlet. The pork chop is pan-fried on each side for a crunch in every tender bite and then paired with three flakey buttermilk biscuits and two sunny side up eggs (other preparations are available upon request). The plate comes with sausage gravy for added indulgence. $16.

Alaskan King Crab & Rock Shrimp Mac & Cheese

Dominick’s Steakhouse The ultimate comfort food gets a considerable upgrade with a seafood duo served piping hot in a skillet. First, the mac and cheese is made using Romano and Tillamook sharp cheddar cheese as well as pasta shells. Before being plated, it is combined with giant lump king crab, sauteed rock shrimp, lemon butter, and fresh herbs. It’s large enough to share (or not). $35.

PB&J Toast

Prep & Pastry This twist on a classic peanut butter and jelly

So Scottsdale! September ‘20




Helmed by chef Charles Wiley, this modern restaurant boasts stunning views for guests to enjoy while sipping craft cocktails, drinking award-winning wines, and dining on seasonal new American cuisine driven by local ingredients. Dinner specialties include Niman Ranch tenderloin and Two Wash Ranch chicken with sweet endings in the form of berry cobbler bread pudding or a triple chocolate sundae. Currently open Thursday through Sunday. At Mountain Shadows: 5445 E. Lincoln Drive, Paradise Valley; 480.624.5400;; $$$


SEL RESTAURANT Named for a French term that means salt, this intimate chef-driven restaurant serves a four-course, fixed-price menu – including a vegetarianfriendly one – with an optional wine pairing that changes regularly to offer guests beautiful and composed dishes featuring fresh, seasonal ingredients. A new special includes an after-hours menu from 9 to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday with items like lamb dumplings and white truffle fries. Reservations recommended. 7044 E. Main St., Scottsdale; 480.949.6296;; $$$$ TRYST CAFE Tryst Cafe is an organic restaurant that creates unique and flavorful dishes for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Everything is made-to-order utilizing natural, healthy ingredients. Signature menu items include grilled tilapia crisps, crispy quinoa avocado, a housemade sweet potato veggie burger, and Thai shrimp lettuce wraps. Organic cocktails are also available at the full-service bar. The eatery is gluten-free and vegan-friendly. Located in Shade at Desert Ridge: 21050 N. Tatum Blvd., Phoenix; 480.585.7978;; $$


As of press time, all restaurants included are open for dine-in service, unless otherwise specified. Due to COVID-19, many restaurants have modified hours and specials – call or go online to verify before dining in.


AZ88 Known for its upbeat ambiance and swanky martinis, AZ88 is a Scottsdale institution. The food menu consists of refined pub fare such as burgers and chicken sandwiches next to shrimp ceviche and bacon-wrapped water chestnuts. The kitchen is open late and the cocktails are guest favorites. 7353 E. Scottsdale Mall, Scottsdale; 480.994.5576;; $$ BIG EARL’S GREASY EATS Housed in a former Standard Oil gas station, Big Earl’s is an art deco diner serving up American classics such as hamburgers, sandwiches and salads alongside a full bar with a huge beer selection and spiked milkshakes.


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

The backyard area offers sand volleyball courts for outdoor family fun. The restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. 6135 E. Cave Creek Road, Cave Creek; 480.575.7889;; $$ CULINARY DROPOUT As part of the Fox Restaurant Concepts family, Culinary Dropout serves quality gastropub fare in a relaxing setting. The soft pretzels and provolone fondue are infamous around the Valley. The Italian chopped salad and 36-hour pork ribs round out a menu to satisfy a light dinner or comfort food cravings. Located at Scottsdale Waterfront, 7135 E. Camelback Road, Scottsdale; 480.970.1700; www.culinarydropout. com; $$

LON’S AT THE HERMOSA INN LON’s is consistently rated as one of Paradise Valley’s top restaurants, and an all-new chef – Rebecca Tillman, formerly of The Phoenician – is heading it up. The region’s freshest ingredients are used to offer farmto-table food integrated with rustic cooking methods such as roasting, smoking and wood-grilling. The outcome is globally inspired Arizona fare that reflects the Southwest landscape. Popular dishes include the Himalayan salt seared ahi tuna and the pecan grilled filet mignon. The expert sommelier is always on hand to assist guests with wine pairings. Don’t miss the Sunday brunch, too! At The Hermosa Inn: 5532 N. Palo Cristi Road, Paradise Valley; 602.955.8614;; $$$-$$$$

SOI 4 BANGKOK EATERY Soi 4 is an upscale dining destination for Thai food in a chic, modern setting. Unique dishes include the Thai taco, utilizing pan-seared paratha flatbread with braised short rib, and the lamb yang, a grilled ginger-marinated rack of Australian lamb. Group dining options are available on the private mezzanine level for full-course meals or for hors d’oeuvres with cocktails. At The Shops at Gainey Village: 8787 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale; 480.778.1999;; $$ SUSHI ROKU Equally trendy and tasty, Sushi Roku delivers creative sushi rolls and Japanese-inspired entrees with a lively, chic atmosphere to match. Have a sake expert select a bottle from the eatery’s list to pair with your baked lobster roll or robata-grilled Chilean sea bass skewers. At W Hotel: 7277 E. Camelback Road, Scottsdale; 480.970.2121; www.innovativedining. com; $$$ THAI CHILI 2 GO Thai Chili 2 Go is a locally owned quick-service restaurant with a focus on fresh ingredients, colorful Thai flavors, and convenience. Guests can utilize the app, online ordering and delivery to quickly cure their Thai food cravings. On the menu are familiar Thai curries, stir-fries,

and noodle dishes. Don’t forget to order a Thai iced tea, too. At The Promenade, 16203 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale; 480.653.9158;; $ TOTTIE’S ASIAN FUSION Chef Tottie Kaya’s namesake restaurant is her vision of bringing together Thai, Vietnamese, Chinese and Japanese cuisine under one roof. Guest favorites include pad thai, Vietnamese egg rolls (known as Tottie Rolls), chicken dumplings and panfried noodles. Closed Mondays. Two locations in Scottsdale: Indian River Plaza and Lincoln Village Shops; www.; $$ VIET KITCHEN Viet Kitchen takes pride in delivering the flavors of Vietnamese cuisine through a dynamic menu and varied offerings with top-notch service and excellent food that keep customers coming back. Menu favorites include the flavor-packed pho tai with rare beef and the barbecue pork with rice noodles. There are also vegetarian options. At Cave Creek Marketplace: 20235 N. Cave Creek Road, Phoenix; 602.788.5535; www.vietkitchenaz. com; $-$$


JL PATISSERIE This French-inspired bakery started out on the farmers market circuit before opening a storefront in 2019. Known for authentic French baguettes and croissants, JL does things a little differently by using sourdough bases and natural fermentation for the baked goods. Don’t miss the carrot cake, a favorite of the owner Jenna Leurquin. 7342 E. Shea Blvd., Scottsdale; 480.859.4459;; $-$$ THE LOCAL DONUT This doughnut shop has built a reputation for its delicious and photogenic fancy donuts. Offering yeasted and cake donuts, the local destination’s specialties include the PB&J and s’mores with a toasted marshmallow on top. The notorious croissant doughnuts are available on Saturday and Sunday only. 3213 N. Hayden Road, Scottsdale; 480.500.5236;; $ SUGARJAM BAKE SHOP AND BISTRO SugarJam Bake Shop and Bistro sells addictive handmade baked goods like pies, brownies, cupcakes, cookies, scones and muffins. Many flavors are seasonal, and the menu rotates frequently. The bistro side of the bakery serves breakfast, brunch and lunch, showcasing fresh-baked

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brioche and pulled pork and brisket entrees smothered in homemade SugarJam barbecue sauce. Custom cakes and larger quantities can be preordered ahead of time. Closed Monday to Wednesday. Weekend brunch available. 7950 E. Redfield Road, Scottsdale; 480.948.6210;; $$


BOOTLEGGERS SMOKEHOUSE This casual tavern and smokehouse features craft barbecue and housemade moonshine cocktails. Starters include boot dumplings with pork belly, shrimp and a mango chipotle sauce; smoked chicken wings; and a bacon board. The menu also features burgers, sandwiches, smokehouse tacos, smoked prime rib, and a barbecue sampler for two or four people. 7217 E. 1st St., Scottsdale; 480.404.9984;; $$ HANDLEBAR J Known as “Scottsdale’s Original Rib House,” Handlebar J is a one-of-akind saloon that first opened in 1966 and has been owned and operated by the Herndon family since 1975. This Western-themed establishment is famous for its slow-cooked pork ribs glazed with homemade smoky chipotle barbecue sauce. Check out the monthly calendar for live music by The Herndon Brothers and other national acts. Don’t miss the line dancing classes when available. 7116 E. Becker Lane, Scottsdale; 480.948.0110;; $$

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Arrowhead • Scottsdale • Tempe • Paradise Valley • Sedona

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So Scottsdale! September ‘20


Vegan/ian Vegetar

THE THUMB The Thumb is a combination gas station and barbecue joint. Guests can stop by for gas, get a car wash, and meander around the kitschy gift shop before popping over for some tasty barbecue. Try the hardwood-smoked pulled pork with spicy house barbecue sauce or the famous breakfast brisket stack that was featured on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives. Breakfast served all day. 9393 E. Bell Road, Scottsdale; 480.513.8186;; $$


BREAKFAST KITCHEN BAR Here you’ll find a variety of breakfast and lunch favorites like omelets, pancakes, benedicts, burgers and sandwiches and specialty items like avocado fries and a chicken and waffles sandwich. The restaurant offers many healthy, keto and gluten-free options, as well as breakfast cocktails, coffee drinks, beer and wine. Two locations: Desert Ridge and Scottsdale Quarter.; $$

FIRST WATCH “Yeah, it’s fresh” is First Watch’s motto. First Watch is a daytime cafe serving dependable breakfast and lunch fare with a rotating seasonal menu. Guests will find the usual omelets, pancakes, salads and sandwiches along with several original creations. For healthier options, First Watch offers low-carb entrees with fresh fruit on the side and protein-packed bowls. There are also juices fresh with allnatural ingredients made daily. Several locations throughout Scottsdale; www.; $$ MATT’S BIG BREAKFAST Known for its fresh ingredients and use of local suppliers, Matt’s Big Breakfast has been a popular breakfast spot in the Valley since 2004. It opened its fifth location – the first in Scottsdale – in January 2020. Menu highlights include the chop & chick with two eggs and a seared pork chop, the salami scramble and Niman Ranch burgers. 13610 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale; 480.590.0096;; $$ MORNING SQUEEZE Morning Squeeze is a groovy brunch spot in Old Town Scottsdale. It combines traditional breakfast favorites with fresh, organic, locally sourced ingredients. Stop in for the popular breakfast tacos filled with scrambled eggs, pepper jack cheese, salsa fresco, and a choice of chorizo, bacon or sausage. For a liquid breakfast, try the classic bloody mary or a seasonal flavor. On the dog-friendly patio, your furry friends can enjoy brunch, too, with doggy biscuits and gravy or the pup cakes off the “tail wagger” menu. 4233 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale; 480.945.4669; www.morningsqueeze. com; $$ THE ORIGINAL PANCAKE HOUSE James Beard Award-winning diner The Original Pancake House has been a Scottsdale breakfast mainstay since it opened its doors in 1988. Pancake lovers can rejoice at the wide selection of specialty pancakes such as the apple pancake glazed in cinnamon-sugar and the bacon pancakes filled with real bits of bacon. 6840 E. Camelback Road, Scottsdale; 480.946.4902;; $$


FATE BREWING COMPANY Fate offers small-batch brews with perfectly paired bites. Favorite Fate beers include Fateful IPA, Buena Vista Blonde Ale, and the award-winning Candy Bar Milk Stout, served only at North Scottsdale. To accompany the

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So Scottsdale! September ‘20


Taste DINING GUIDE beers, diners can enjoy wings, burgers, salads and wood-fired pizzas. The South Scottsdale location has a large beer garden with a dog-friendly patio. Two Scottsdale locations: South Scottsdale and North Scottsdale.; $$ GROWLER USA Growler USA is a national chain that is dedicated to quality craft beer with over 90 beers on draft. Feel free to try a few of the beers with a sampler flight. Pub fare includes loaded beer-battered fries, short rib sliders, handcrafted pretzels with beer cheese sauce, beer brat sliders, wraps, tacos, salads and sandwiches. 5415 E. High St., Phoenix; 480.454.4354; www.; $$ O.H.S.O. O.H.S.O. (which stands for Outrageous Homebrewer’s Social Outpost) has developed a reputation as a local-centric and dog-friendly social hot spot. It offers several nanobrews as well as cocktails made with vodka, rum and gin from its distillery. Brunch on Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. includes a 10-ounce Arizona beer or mimosa with each entree. Gluten-free and vegan menus are available. Locations include North Scottsdale and Paradise Valley; www.; $$ PHX BEER CO. Last year, Phoenix Ale Brewery became PHX Beer Co. and opened a Scottsdale restaurant in addition to its two Phoenix locations. The menu offers several items made with PHX Beer Co.’s brews including ale house wings, beer-battered cod and chips, and a porter brownie, as well as its signature black iron pizzas, sandwiches, burgers, salads and soups. 8300 N. Hayden Road, Scottsdale; 480.571.8645; www.; $$

Health Food

PROTEIN HOUSE This fit kitchen strives to support those who seek nutritious meals in a convenient fast-casual environment. ProteinHouse has an extensive menu that includes healthy salads, high-protein burgers, wraps on-thego, cold-pressed juice and protein shakes. And a section of the breakfast menu is dedicated to all kinds of protein pancakes, such as the chocolate monster pancakes that are whole grain whey protein pancakes infused with dark chocolate chips and topped with bananas, walnuts and sugar-free chocolate protein sauce. Glutenfree and vegan/vegetarian friendly. 7077 E. Mayo Blvd., Scottsdale; 480.502.5183; www.protein-house. com; $$


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

ORIGINAL CHOPSHOP Original ChopShop offers producepacked juices, protein shakes and healthful bowls and sandwiches. This quick-service restaurant is committed to offering tasty fuel for the body by using fresh, whole ingredients, as well as guiltless baked goods for a delicious sweet treat to end your meal. The menu includes vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free and lactose-free items. Several locations throughout the Valley, including Old Town, North Scottsdale and Paradise Valley;; $$ TRUE FOOD KITCHEN In collaboration with integrated medicine guru, Dr. Andrew Weil, M.D., True Food Kitchen is a leader in healthy farm-to-table full-service dining. The food and beverage menus are created with seasonal ingredients guided by Weil’s anti-inflammatory food pyramid model. The farmers market crudites is a bouquet of chilled raw vegetables served with tzatziki and Kalamata olive dip that is a great starter for the table. The ancient grains bowl and grass-fed steak tacos are also fan favorites. True Food Kitchen happily caters to a variety of food preferences including gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan. At Scottsdale Quarter, 15191 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale; 480.265.4500; www.truefoodkitchen. com; $$-$$$


FELLOW OSTERIA From the team behind Clever Koi and Across the Pond in Phoenix, Fellow is a casual Italian-style eatery and craft cocktail bar nestled within ASU SkySong. Swing in for a latte at the full coffee bar and a grab-and-go sandwich or salad for lunch, or gather friends for dinner on the beautiful, spacious patio or drinks at the fullservice bar. Menu highlights include fresh Mediterranean-style octopus salad, saffron arancini, and a focused selection of organic pasta and handtossed pizzas. At ASU SkySong: 1455 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale; 480.207.1864; www.fellowosteria. com; $$ PASTA BRIONI For 25 years, Pasta Brioni has been a favorite neighborhood Italian restaurant in Old Town Scottsdale — and for good reason. All pastas are made from scratch, meatballs are handrolled, and rolls are baked fresh each morning. The menu features a lobster and a vegetarian mushroom version of the daily homemade ravioli stuffed with creamy mascarpone. 4416 N. Miller Road, Scottsdale; 480.994.0028; www.pastabrioni. com; $$

POMO PIZZERIA The Pomo family specializes in authentic Neapolitan pizza baked in hand-built, wood-fired ovens. For antipasti, the fritto misto and caprese are great to share, while the classic margherita and signature Pomo pizzas are faultless. The restaurant’s time-tested recipe is certified by the Verace Pizza Napoletana and Associazione Pizzaiuoli Napoletani organizations, authenticating Pomo’s true Italian pizzeria experience. Gluten-free and vegan options available. 8977 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale; 480.998.1366;; $$ S&V URBAN ITALIAN This contemporary Italian restaurant offers wood-fired brick oven pizza and classic pasta dishes. S&V has dozens of wines by the glass and bottle, and the calamari appetizer and chicken pesto pizza are some of the most popular items. A gluten-free menu is available. 9343 E. Shea Blvd., Scottsdale; 480.451.1850; www.; $$ THE SICILIAN BUTCHER The Sicilian Butcher is a modern casual eatery that specializes in craft meatballs, fresh pastas made in-house daily, bruschetta, and its famous 5-foot charcuterie board. Try Tony’s steak balls made with ground aged rib-eye, roasted garlic, mozzarella, parmigiana, onions, and herbed breadcrumbs or the vegetarian eggplant parm balls made with roasted eggplant, basil, parmigiana, mozzarella and herbed breadcrumbs. Gluten-free options available. 15530 N. Tatum Blvd., Phoenix; 602.775.5140; www.; $$


EL ENCANTO The atmosphere at El Encanto is vibrant fiesta of food and fun. The eatery, which has been serving up the classics since 1989, is a celebration for the senses, with a vast list of margaritas and authentic Mexican cuisine. The slow-roasted pork carnitas and cheesy pollo fundido are some of the most popular entrees. Kids menu available. 6248 E. Cave Creek Road, Cave Creek, 480.488.1752; www.; $$ LA HACIENDA A favorite with locals and visitors alike, La Hacienda does Mexican cuisine the way only Fairmont Scottsdale Princess can. Upscale yet approachable, the restaurant’s dynamic, modern cuisine is complemented by the unparalleled tequila bar. Fine details are everywhere from the decor to the freshly prepared dishes. Menu

favorites include the tableside guacamole and the carnitas hacienda. The famous flaming coffee is not to be missed. At Fairmont Scottsdale Princess: 7575 E. Princess Drive, Scottsdale; 480.585.4848; www.; $$$ MR. MESQUITE TAQUERIA Quick and easy are two adjectives that define Mr. Mesquite Taqueria. The aroma of the grill is undeniable, making it nearly irresistible to order a couple chicken and carne asada tacos. Quesadillas and burritos are also popular options. Fans of the taqueria appreciate large portions and party platters. Two Scottsdale locations: Old Town Scottsdale and North Scottsdale; www.eatmrmesquite. com; $ OLD TOWN TORTILLA FACTORY Built from a 75-year-old adobe home, Old Town Tortilla Factory cooks up fresh tortillas in the heart of the Scottsdale Arts District. The menu offers Southwestern cuisine with Mexican flair. Diners can enjoy one of the many specialty margaritas with the house favorite red chile pork chop in the expansive garden patio during gorgeous Arizona evenings. Glutenfree and vegetarian options available. 6910 E. Main St., Scottsdale; 480.585.4848;; $$-$$$ TAPAS PAPA FRITA A gem in the heart of Old Town Scottsdale, Tapas Papa Frita is the real deal in Spanish and Latin cuisine, ideal for a celebration with flamenco flare. Order some tapas to share with friends and family, and don’t miss the hearty De Bogavante paella, a San Sebastian favorite full of lobster and shrimp. Enjoy live music and a flamenco show every Friday and Saturday night. 7114 E. Stetson Drive, Scottsdale; 480.699.5004; www.; $$$ TOCAYA ORGANICA Expect Mexican cuisine with bold flavors and healthy, fresh options to accommodate a variety of dietary preferences including vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free in a bright setting. Diners have a choice of salads, tacos, bowls and burritos with a selection of proteins like turkey picante, adobo tofu, shrimp and carne asada, and cheeses including chipotle jack, cotija and vegan mozzarella. There are watermelon, strawberry basil and cucumber mint agua frescas as well as a variety of margaritas. Two Scottsdale locations: Scottsdale Fashion Square and Kierland Commons;; $$


KITCHEN 18 Kitchen 18 is a fresh, dairy-free, and 100% kosher lunch and dinnerrestaurant. The eclectic menu offers Mediterranean, Middle Eastern, and Chinese dishes to suit every palate, and guests appreciate the aromatic freshly baked pita and challah bread. Closed Saturday. 10211 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale; 480.284.6001;; $$ PARS PERSIAN CUISINE Pars serves fine Persian cuisine in the heart of Scottsdale. Juicy marinated kebabs, hummus and stuffed grape leaves are beautifully plated and served with traditional basmati rice. Persian ice cream is a delightful way to end with something sweet. Vegetarian and vegan dishes are available. Open for lunch and dinner. 11144 N. Frank Lloyd Wright Blvd., Scottsdale; 480.551.3222; www.; $$


BOURBON & BONES CHOPHOUSE & BAR This modern and upscale steakhouse specializes in top-quality, wet- and dry-aged steaks and fresh seafood. The bar is stocked with more than 75 high-end bourbons. The interior consists of studded leather and crystal lighting, perfect for an intimate evening. 4200 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale; 480.629.4922; www.; $$$ EDDIE MERLOT’S Eddie Merlot’s is a premium chain of steakhouses that serves prime-aged steaks, seafood, and an extensive wine list to complement. The posh dining room makes this restaurant an ideal setting for celebrating or date night. The restaurant sources high-quality fresh produce and makes many items from scratch. For the steak connoisseur, Eddie Merlot’s USDA prime beef is aged a minimum of 21 days. 23207 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale; 480.699.0480;; $$$$ FLEMING’S PRIME STEAKHOUSE & WINE BAR Fleming’s is a nationally renowned steakhouse that serves exceptional USDA prime and certified Angus beef. Starters include shrimp cocktail and crab cakes, while favorite sides include potatoes and mac and cheese. End the meal with New York cheesecake, or chocolate butter cake. Two Scottsdale locations: North Scottsdale Road and DC Ranch; www.; $$$$

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So Scottsdale! September ‘20




French-inspired Francine opens at Scottsdale Fashion Square


Acclaimed restaurateur Laurent Halasz, known for his national Fig & Olive brand as well as Farmhouse in Los Angeles, joins a growing list of culinary talent choosing to put down epicurean roots in Arizona with the opening of Francine. Located in the luxury wing of Scottsdale Fashion Square alongside Nobu, Toca Madera, Ocean 44 and Zinquè, Halasz’s all-new concept, Francine, provides a fine dining experience inspired by Halasz’s own childhood in the south of France. The name itself is in homage to his mother, Francine Halasz, and the dishes are a nod to the meals prepared and served during gatherings with friends and family. “Everything on my mother’s table was fresh, seasonal and full of flavor,” Halasz says. “Our aim here is to offer that same experience but in our own soulful way.” The 5,000-square-foot restaurant features floor-to-ceiling windows, allowing for an abundance of natural light; a rustic fireplace; a marble bar; and a plethora of plants, all meant to make diners feel as if they are guests at one of Francine’s parties or enjoying the beautiful outdoors in the family’s coastal and lushly green hometown.


So Scottsdale! September ‘20

Valley native and classically Frenchtrained chef Brian Archibald leads Francine’s culinary team as executive chef. Archibald most recently served as executive chef of Boulders Resort & Spa and brings over 20 years of experience to the roll, including extensive time in leadership roles in the kitchens at Graduate Tempe, Renaissance Phoenix Downtown Hotel, JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort &Spa, The Phoenician, and JW Marriott Phoenix Desert Ridge Resort & Spa. The dinner menu features hors d’oeuvres, salads, pastas, pizzas, shareable sides, and entrees divided by land and sea. Notable highlights from these more standard sections of the menu include roasted bone marrow ($17), Roquefort pizza ($17), and olive oil poached tuna ($36). There are also sections of the menu titled Le Jardin, which translates to “The Garden” and features seasonal plant- and farm-driven specialties; Carpaccio & Tartare with signature offerings of each; and For Two, offering two shareable plates. For Two favorites include cote de boeuf, which includes a 32-ounce rib-eye steak, olive oil bearnaise and the choice of two sides ($95); and whole branzino with a sea salt crust and fresh herbs served tableside with ratatouille ($59). At lunch, the menu includes salads, carpaccio, pizza and shareable dishes. The drink menu has six signature cocktails, including a French 75 and an Aperol Spritz, that will change semiseasonally as well as a traditional menu, mocktails, beer, and wine by the glass and bottle, with an emphasis on Italian and French varietals. Francine is open Monday through Thursday from 4 to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 4 to 11 p.m., and Sunday from 4 to 9 p.m. The restaurant will also add weekend brunch this month. Francine, 4710 N. Goldwater Blvd., Scottsdale;; 480.690.6180.

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