Page 1

hot springs

getaways in the



速 速

inspiration ideas resources

custom closets

artistry in adobe Fort McDowell hacienda

here we go again Paradise Valley remodel VOL. 1 NO. 4 AUTUMN 2015


Iyla Bath Collection

“My expert advice? Rely on an expert.”

AMY MATTHEWS TV Host and Licensed General Contractor

TV host and Licensed General Contractor Amy Matthews has built and remodeled lots of homes over the years. As an expert, she knows better than anyone the value of working with professionals – like the ones at Ferguson. Our product experts will help you find the perfect products from the finest bath, kitchen and lighting brands in the world, so you can take pride in your home – on every level. Set up your consultation with Ferguson today, and let us show you the possibilities for your next project. Visit and schedule your appointment today.

©2015 Ferguson Enterprises, Inc.


Scottsdale (480) 556-0103

䐀刀䔀圀䔀吀吀 圀伀刀䬀匀     䄀刀䌀䠀䤀吀䔀䌀吀唀刀䔀     眀眀眀⸀搀爀攀眀攀琀琀眀漀爀欀猀⸀挀漀洀 㜀㄀㐀㐀 䔀⸀ 匀琀攀琀猀漀渀 䐀爀椀瘀攀Ⰰ 匀甀椀琀攀 ㈀ 㐀Ⰰ 匀挀漀琀琀猀搀愀氀攀Ⰰ 䄀娀        㠀㔀㔀ⴀ搀爀攀ⴀ眀攀琀琀



inspiration ideas resources

Chris Corrie


A Paradise Valley home with great bones and amazing views gets a makeover.





22 here we go again

Their Paradise Valley home had great bones and flow but was in need of a mostly cosmetic facelift. The homeowners, who are experienced remodelers, turned to a professional interior designer and even the home’s original builder to help them renovate and update their mountain-view residence.

30 comfortable reality

Having to kick open the front door might have deterred other potential homebuyers, but this intrepid couple saw plenty of potential in the half-finished adobe building in Fort McDowell. With love, creativity, and a dynamic build and design team, they turned a dusty shell into a gorgeous, eclectic hacienda.



growing green

Living walls work indoors and out and in the most unexpected places. Learn why homeowners and business owners are incorporating these green features into yards, homes, and offices.

S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

A concrete privacy wall goes from drab to fab with the addition of living wall flower boxes.

Alex Billingsley


in every issue


6 Inside Su Casa 8 Life + Style Southwest

The best (and most fun) way to learn about wines is to attend tastings. Learn what to expect and how to get the most out of a tasting.

A custom master bath; Moll Anderson on “inspiration destination” decorating; trends in window coverings; a roundup of elegant tablescaping ideas; Steve Thomas’s take on “seeking professional help.”

15 Design Studio

Dreaming of an organized, custom closet? Closet designers discuss the latest trends, and Ron Ostash of Closet Masters joins us for a Q&A.

40 Su Cocina

Wine expert James Selby offers tips on how to do a wine tasting, and editor Amy Gross takes those tips to heart during a visit to Aridus Wine Company.

44 Vida Buena Hot mineral springs in the Southwest; community-forward boutique urbAna; ArtWalk; and more.

52 What’s Happening? Events and live performances happening around the Valley from September through November.

54 Su Libro

Two new books look to colorful eras for modern design inspiration.

56 Adios

Amy Gross

A day spent lazily floating the Salt River is a good day indeed. On the cover: Ed and Julie Hamlin saw the potential in the unfinished shell they eventually transformed into their comfortable hacienda. Read all about it on page 30. Cover photo by Chris Corrie.


Courtesy Arizona Garage & Closet Design



S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015



allbeds “n” More is focused on providing a variety of high-quality, stylish wallbeds, and creating solutions for desired multi-purpose spaces, such as converting your home office into a guest room. Imagine a convertible, multipurpose room—a guest bedroom when you need it, that doubles as a functional craft room, exercise space or office. Our beds are made of all hardwood solids and veneers and are finished in a variety of stains to match the decor of your home. Our wallbeds do not require specialty mattresses, which allows your guests to sleep on a real mattress of your choice. Your wallbed can be as small or large as your space and budget allow, with options for cabinets, hanging space and more. Experience our customer-service driven installation by white-glove professionals, without disturbing your flooring or wall structure. We provide a lifetime lift-mechanism guarantee.

Scottsdale: Frank Lloyd Wright & the 101 480.378.0093

Ahwatukee/Chandler: 48th Street & Ray Road 480.535.8848

A comfortable extra bed for any room!

Inside Su Casa

“Our Family Values Bring You The Value You Deserve!”

destination: home


c, redld— a ose, OUR “


Furniture | Accessories | Lighting ned “R & Drawer Freal Wood” Doors onts • Basic Closets • Entertainment Centers Electronics | Office | Patio •|9- Luxury materials us ed

(Not the usua l fak by other clo set companies e

) Ply Birch “Dov • Custom Closets • Pantries e-Tail” Draw (Not just na iled & glued ers together me • Garage Cabinetry • Laundry Rooms lamine) • Premium “Sand close-outs • At• Terri’s, it’s new and gently used from fine homes, estates, liquidations of t-Close” Door Home Offices • Custom Cabinetry (Not the ine s & Drawers xpensive ha rdware othe rs use) ainebuyers • We promise fair market pricing and to be honest and available to• Stour consignors d “Real Wand oo

are orod

d“ Moldings

(Not fake)

• Always receive 30 to 90% off retail • Huge Sele ction of H (Not the usua l limited choic andles or Knobs es) • At Terri’s, find unique items and brand names that have stood the of • Unltest imited time—Thomasville, Ethan Allen, Henredon, Drexel, Stanley and so much more

wise st as sts kes se or

(Not just a few

Color Finishes



At Terri’s—High Quality, Low Prices vs. Low Quality, Low Prices Family Owned and Operated. Not a Franchise.


480-991-4399 14647 S. 50th St., #100, Phoenix, AZ 85044

- Call to visit our Scottsdale Showroom

with pt of

Hanging with Quality Since 1984

, and .com





Lic. ROC 108146 • Bonded • Insured

Subscribe to


inspiration ideas resources


old world, good taste

cal den, the s ting that hang out


Great design tips in every issue! turning up the heat

fireplaces + pizza ovens

a twist on traditional


in North Scottsdale Vol. 1 no. 1 WINTER 2015





Bruce Adams

or call (818) 286-3155





owng box

e are so pleased to be presenting our fourth issue of Su Casa Phoenix/Scottsdale, which represents the conclusion of a full year of bringing ideas, inspiration, and resources to our community. Editor Amy Gross has been thrilled with the variety of homes, new and old, that we have been able to feature, as well as all the unique qualities about our region that, even living here, we might not always know about. It’s hardly news to say that Arizona has a wealth of innovative and skilled craftspeople who are experts at helping us not only see “the vision” of our home, but also at expanding ideas that may not have occurred to us. This is precisely why Su Casa exists. As outdoor living time expands in the comfortable fall months, ideas for the home become seasonally oriented. This is why Su Casa publishes seasonally, four times a year. The varying seasons present new opportunities to customize our homes in exactly the way that brings us the most joy. The Greers, who remodeled one of the homes in this issue, point out that fulfilling their vision is half the fun. Perhaps your vision will stem from one of the countless ideas in these pages. In her column “Inspiration Destination,” Moll Anderson suggests that we include treasures and inspiration from our travels in our home decorating. Two thoughts about this struck me. One is that when we’re perusing the offerings in whatever locale we find ourselves, our shopping can be done with our homes in mind. We can shop not as tourists but as homeowners looking to enhance our residences with reminders from our vacations. The other thought is that shopping for our home, even when we’re far from it, is a wonderful reminder that we have a home—a safe and happy place to return to.


The kitchen you’ve always wanted, with the savings you never expected. Purchase a combination of Sub-Zero and Wolf appliances now, and get up to $7,000 worth of Wolf Gourmet products, from countertop appliances to cookware. The “Complete Your Kitchen” offer is good through March 31, 2016. For details, visit

Serving Valleywide since 1991 • We Specialize in Built-In Appliances!

4727 East Bell Road, Suite 47 (S.W. Corner of Tatum & Bell Rd.) • 602-482-2737 • 6500 sq.ft. Showroom • Open Every Day!

Life+Style Southwest Not everyone has the luxury of remodeling a home entirely around their own preferences and needs, but North Scottsdale resident Tina Machado did. “She wanted to create something just for her,” says interior designer Debra May Himes of the master bathroom. “De-Tuscanizing” the space of its dark wood and heavy colors created a light and airy—and very feminine—bath, with creamy white cabinetry and walls clad in vein-cut marble serving as a neutral palette backdrop to a contemporary, freestanding tub. Himes created niches behind the tub to house towels, accent pieces, and a collection of treasured items that once belonged to Machado’s mother. When the window is open, the soothing sounds of water from a fountain just outside make this bath a lovely spot for reminiscing and relaxing. Debra May Himes Interior Design & Associates, 8

S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

Dino Tonn

just for her

Published by Bella Media, LLC


Bruce Adams

Associate Publisher B.Y. Cooper


Amy Gross

Editorial Intern

Elizabeth Sanchez

Graphic Designer Whitney Stewart

Designer & Media Specialist Michelle Odom

Contributing Designers

Sybil Watson, Hannah Reiter

Graphic Design Intern Holly Pons

Operations Manager Ginny Stewart

Associate Publisher, Advertising Manager Frankie Mae Richards 480-678-0523

Advertising Sales Representative Anita Weldon 602-529-1808


Moll Anderson, Bill Kurtz, Jessica Muncrief James Selby, Donna Schillinger Steve Thomas, Danielle Urbina

Photography Chris Corrie

Please direct editorial inquiries to For subscriptions, call 818-286-3155 Phoenix Office 8655 East Via de Ventura, Ste G-155 Scottsdale, AZ 85258

Santa Fe Office Pacheco Park, 1512 Pacheco St, Ste D-105 Santa Fe, NM 87505 505-983-1444 Su Casa Phoenix/Scottsdale (ISSN 1094-4562 & USPS # 2-3618) Volume 1, Number 4, Autumn 2015. Su Casa Phoenix/Scottsdale is published quarterly in November, February, May, and August by Bella Media, LLC, at Pacheco Park, 1512 Pacheco St, Ste D-105, Santa Fe, NM 87505, USA, Phone 505-983-1444. Š Copyright 2015 by Bella Media, LLC. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is strictly prohibited. Basic annual subscription rate is $9.95, Canada & Mexico is $23.95, Other international countries is $27.95. U.S. single-copy price is $5.95. Back issues are $6.95 each. Periodicals postage pending at Albuquerque, NM, and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send all UAA to CFS. NON-POSTAL AND MILITARY FACILITIES: send address corrections to Su Casa Phoenix/Scottsdale P.O. Box 15686, North Hollywood, CA 91615-6925 Subscription Customer Service: Su Casa Phoenix/Scottsdale P.O. Box 15686, North Hollywood, CA 91615-5686 Phone 818-286-3155, Fax 800-869-0040,

Enchanted Spaces

by Moll Anderson

First thing to do is think back to the hotels or resorts you visited. What made these locations really special and unique? Maybe it was the room you stayed in, the overall feel of the hotel, the views, the gardens, or the beaches. All you need to do is look for those elements from your destination and mirror them in your home. Having a crazy busy schedule, I don’t always get to travel everywhere my heart desires. To be honest, I simply cannot be away from work long enough to actually get to some of the more exotic locales like Morocco. But I never let that hold me back and keep me from traveling to a faraway place right in my own backyard. Imagine a destination—either a place you have actually traveled to or a location that inspires you—and bring

Michael Gomez Photography

Imagine a destination—either a place you have actually traveled to or a location that inspires you—and bring the elements of this magical place to your home.

inspiration destination

Create spaces inspired by your favorite travel locations


ur summer vacations may be behind us, but now we can take some time to reflect on the memories of those fun summer getaways. Whenever I have a fabulous and memorable vacation, I spend time reflecting on the spaces that inspired me and take away more than just photos and memories from the trip. In my mind, I tuck away the simple details that brought me the most joy in order to create a destination in my home that I can enjoy every day, all year long.


S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

the elements of this magical place to your home. I was inspired by the magic of Morocco in reimagining my outdoor living areas. I found these beautiful carved doors (see photo at left) in Los Angeles in a warehouse and made them the focal point of my outdoor space. I used the doors to create a courtyard effect, and just like that, the transformation began to sweep me off my feet. Soon I was adding decadent details in the fabrics, walls, accessories, and textures, which all provided the finishing touches to my Moroccan theme. You can easily do the same. Don’t worry about being perfectly on track as if a historian were keeping score. All that matters is that you are creating your dream destination—in your own home. Left: These highly patterned tiles were selected for their exotic appearance. Opposite, left: “Luminaries placed around the courtyard give the look of having been dug up during an excavation,” says Moll.

Editor’s Pick Grow a Living Wall: Create Vertical Gardens with Purpose, by Shawna Coronado, Cool Springs Press, paperback, $25; also available as an ebook.

“Our Family Values Bring You The Value You Deserve!”


he idea of growing vertically isn’t a new one—Google Patrick Blanc, who has created hundreds of incredOrnately ible workscarved of growing art around the world— wooden columns add but Shawna Coronado’s new book, Grow a to Moll’s Moroccan Living Wall: Create Vertical Gardens with Purpose, experience at home. brings the concept of vertical gardening squarely back to the home grower. Coronado came up with the idea of “growing up” after doing a little math. By turning the growing space of an average window box vertically, she determined she could grow nearly six square feet of plants in one square foot. And what if more people did this? Coronado muses. What amazing things it could mean in terms of feeding the hungry and creating more plants for pollinators! Aesthetically speaking, I love the idea of imparting a bright spot of color on an otherwise blank wall with culinary herbs (which I detest buying at grocery stores) or colorful cactus (as shown below). Need ideas? Coronado suggests an herbal tea wall or a butterfly wall. All it takes is a framed art wall unit that you can purchase or make yourself and a bit of imagination. This is a great little book for home gardeners and anyone concerned about sustainable growing. And if you’re “down” with doing a bit of DIY, you’ll love the concept of growing “up.”—Amy Gross

Beall + Thomas Photography

Don’t worry about being perfectly on track as if a historian were keeping score.



Basic Closets Custom Closets Garage Cabinetry Home Offices

d “R & Drawer Freal Wood” Doors onts (Not the us

• Entertainment Centers • Pantries • Laundry Rooms • Custom Cabinetry

materials us ed


Call to visit our Scottsdale Showroom Hanging with Quality Since 1984





inspiration ideas resources

Courtesy of Cool Springs Press

ual fake Lic. ROC 108146 • Bonded • Insured

Subscribe to


personality and the best-selling author of four books, including The Seductive Home.


Family Owned and Operated. Not a Franchise.

Available through Barnes & Noble, Amazon, and The Poisoned Pen Bookstore,

In this vertical cactus garden, soil secures the cactus roots inside planting pockets so that the plants hang Life stylist and philanthropist Moll Anderson tightly without is an Emmy Award–winning television falling out.

by other clo

companies) • 9-Ply Birch “Dove-Tail” D (Not just na rawers iled & glued together me lamine) • Premium “S oft-Close” Do (Not the ine ors & Drawer xpensive ha rdware othe s rs use) • Stained “R ea l Wood“ Mol (Not fake) dings • Huge Sele ct io n of H (Not the usua l limited choic andles or Knobs es) • Unlimited Color Finishes (Not just a few Available choices)


old world, good taste

Great design tips in every issue!

turning up the heat

fireplaces + pizza ovens

a twist on traditional


Left: Moll found beautiful scarves and turned them into striking pillows for her outdoor living areas.


today! NOW!

in North Scottsdale Vol. 1 no. 1 WINTER 2015



11 41

Life+Style Southwest

Lutron Electronics, Inc.

by Jessica Muncrief

windows to the world Covering windows is a must, but don’t shut out the view

Above: Lutron’s CERUS (Cord Eliminating Roman Uptake Shades) from Scottsdale Shade & Light are completely cordless. Right: Sophisticated roller shades from Hunter Douglas, coupled with Alustra Screen Shades fabrics, are contemporary and fashionable. 12

S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

Hunter Douglas


n enviable view is as much a part of a home’s décor as the flooring and finishes, yet desert living almost always necessitates some form of window covering. Intense heat and harsh UV rays can do serious damage to everything from furnishings to flooring, and they don’t do the energy bills any favors, either. “Window shades are a mainstay in this part of the country,” says Richard Kozma, business manager at Carefree Coverings ( in Scottsdale. “Even if you don’t have privacy issues, even if you don’t want some sort of decorative treatment, that solar protection is important. Look at all your great artwork and furniture. Those need to be safeguarded.” Thankfully, modern window treatments go well beyond miniblinds and drapes. “From exterior products and window films to traditional blinds and shades to motorized treatments, there are a whole lot more options available on the market these days,” Kozma adds.

“It’s a big misconception that lighter colors are the most (602) 277-3800 Call today and ask for sheer. Think of dark colors like Andrea Marcussen. looking through sunglasses. They increase visibility and reduce glare.”—Jean We Specialize In Jumbo Loans,Cook Conventional Loans, FHA and VA Loans.

Hunter Douglas

Courtesy of American German Rollshutters & Shades

We Help Finance Your Dream Home!

Hunter Douglas’s Classic Heritance hardwood shutters feature a rear-mounted louverAndrea controller. Marcussen According to Carefree Coverings’ Whether you are Buying a new owner Gary Pelow, open look home or Refinancing yourthe current makes them “an home, we can help you get there. all-time favorite.”

. Advantages Over Larger Banks are Lower Rates, Faster Turn Times, Local Service

We will help finance

. Your primary residence . Your vacation home . Your investment properties to help build your investment portfolio.

American Financial Lending, Inc. 20860 N. Tatum Blvd #160, Phoenix, AZ 85050 Located in the “Desert Ridge Corporate Center” Find me on Zillow (Northwest corner ofLeft: Tatum and Loop 101) German Rollshutters & Shades, a solar fiberglass From American fabric BK#142147 NMLS #274583

with 95 percent density offers shade and privacy.


13 9

Lutron Electronics, Inc.

“Even if you don’t have privacy issues . . . solar protection is important. Look at all your great artwork and furniture. Those need to be safeguarded.” —Richard Kozma

Above: Lutron Sivoia QS automated roller shades reduce glare and maximize the view. “From a remote control or smartphone, automated window shading allows ease of operation with the touch of one button,” says Susan Oster, owner of Scottsdale Shade & Light.


S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

Courtesy of American German Rollshutters & Shades

These fabric solar screens are perfect as stand-alone window coverings, or they can roll up behind draperies when sunlight isn’t an issue.

Hunter Douglas

Choosing the best option all starts with evaluating lifestyle. As Jean Cook, owner of Scottsdale’s American German Rollshutters & Shades (, points out, what works for permanent residents doesn’t always pan out for snowbirds. “The first question I ask clients is: Are you seasonal or are you here all the time? Exterior shades, for example, probably aren’t a good idea if you aren’t in residence year round, especially if the property has wind issues. Problems could arise that you wouldn’t know about for months.” Style, privacy issues, the need for direct light, and the overall function of a room are also tantamount concerns when selecting a window covering. And it turns out, most products are created with the idea that protecting the view outside is just as important as protecting everything inside. “The products we offer are very clean and contemporary,” says Cook. “We can even make the shades go up into the wall so, when drawn, you can’t see them at all. Fabric color is another big issue. It’s a big misconception that lighter colors are the most sheer. Think of dark colors like looking through sunglasses. They increase visibility and reduce glare—all of a sudden you can see better. Many times, darker colors are a better solution for people who want to maintain that view.”

Products that offer the best of all worlds, like Hunter Douglas’s Honeycomb Shades, are big sellers in the Phoenix area. The shades are available in horizontal or vertical orientations, a wide range of light control levels, and a number of different colors, patterns, and pleat sizes. They can be either lowered from the top or raised from the bottom, and the triple-cell construction makes them one of the most energy efficient products on the market. No matter which style or material a homeowner chooses, integrating technology is an absolute must. Motorization and remote access are not simply fads, Kozma points out; they are the wave of the future: “Everything is moving toward motorization.” Whether it’s raising the window treatments with just the flip of a switch or lowering them from afar via a smartphone, drawing the shades has taken on a whole new meaning. “Everybody loves gadgets, and there are so many wonderful things we can do with electronics,” Cook notes. “If you want to set the scene by having the shades rise at sunset or do something different on just one side of the room, we now have full, automated control. New products are appearing on the market all the time. It’s a pretty exciting time for our industry.”

Design Studio

by Jessica Muncrief



Stan Hillhouse

A roomy and well-organized custom closet is the stuff of dreams

A sumptuous dark wood closet from Classy Closets has a distinctly masculine feel. The granite-topped island provides extra storage and a place to set out or fold clothes while dressing.

Courtesy of Closet Masters


ell-designed homes boast many elements to ooh and aah over, but oftentimes it’s a great closet that really makes people swoon. A custom closet is much more than just storage; it’s a sanity saver and a display case for a girl’s—and these days, a guy’s—most enviable possessions. As with any storage space, most homeowners looking to upgrade their closets are looking for ample room and optimal organization. “These two goals work hand in hand,” points out Michael Fetch of Scottsdale-based Arizona Garage & Closet Design ( “When you’re better organized, you tend to have more space—and vice versa. Let’s face it, we all have busy lives, and being better organized helps with our day-to-day tasks.” Designing a closet is often a balancing act between the belongings a person has versus the area they have to transform into storage. To determine the best layout, Fetch recommends digging deep into the details. “I ask clients lots of questions. How much hanging space do they need for shorter items, like shirts and blouses, and how much ‘long hang’ do they need, like for dresses? Do they hang their pants from the cuff or fold them over a hanger? How much shelf space do they need for folded items? They don’t know many of these answers, so we will actually go into their closet and start counting.” Fetch also notes that people hang their clothes differently depending on whether they’re a rightie or a leftie, and that many clothes hounds will rotate out their clothing seasonally. Left: A simple but highly functional closet in a master suite incorporates space-saving hanging areas in a corner and plenty of drawers, including open drawers for fast access to often-used items. SUCASAMAGAZINE.COM




How do you adapt a closet to fit the style of the home? It all depends on the look the customer wishes to have. If they want something basic we can do a simple wall mount system. If they want something more extensive, we do crown molding, base molding, cabinet wall backing, flutes, and shelf trim to give it that complete furniture look. Right now, everything seems to be very contemporary, so we keep it very clean with square molding and square baseboards. Sometimes we use exotic wood shades or add textures. What types of materials do you use to build your closets? We manufacture all of our cabinets on-site. We generally use thermofused melamine, which is similar to laminate and comes in solid colors, several wood grain colors, and contemporary styles. The doors and moldings are often real stained wood. Closet Masters, 16

S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

When it comes to every fashonista’s favorite accessories— shoes and handbags—simpler is usually better. Fancy racks usually have nothing on basic shelving. “Shoes are always a huge issue,” notes Bob LeSueur of Classy Closets ( in Scottsdale. “We typically use flat shelves because that’s the most efficient use of space. They can be adjusted for boots or taller shoes so they don’t have to be scrunched or folded over.”

If space allows, islands, much like those found in kitchens, are great options for incorporating extra drawers, storage, and countertop space. Once the basics get worked out, there are plenty of bells and whistles to incorporate. “A standard closet generally comes with shelves and rods, but we’re also adding tie racks, scarf and belt hooks, valet rods, jewelry drawers, hampers, and cabinet lighting,” explains Ron Ostash, owner of Scottsdale-based Closet Masters ( If space allows, islands, much like those found in kitchens, are great options for incorporating extra drawers, storage, and countertop space. “If there isn’t room for an island, we might do a peninsula coming off one wall,” says LeSueur.

Photo Credit

What’s your most popular closet accessory? A lot of catalogs sell cutesy organizers or racks, but most of the time those things aren’t very efficient. One of our most popular accessories is the valet rod—a metal rod that slides out about 10 inches. Ladies love it. Many ask for half a dozen. It’s great for laying out an outfit, especially for professionals, or if you’re planning a night out. You can also hang items as you pack your travel bag. Or, if you’re organizing your laundry or dry cleaning in your closet, you have a place to hang those things while you work.

Think only big girls need lots of closet space? This sweet closet by Closet Masters is a little girl’s dream in pink and white.

Courtesy of Arizona Garage & Closet Design

The Ostash family has owned and operated Closet Masters since 1993. Working with homeowners, homebuilders, and developers, Closet Masters is an independently owned family business that can customize storage systems to every need.

Courtesy of Closet Masters

Ron Ostash, Closet Masters

Courtesy of Arizona Garage & Closet Design

Stone Renovations, Inc. GRANITE–MARBLE–QUARTZ

Gray, flat-panel cabinetry makes this closet by Arizona Garage & Closet Design look especially sleek and clean. The his-and-hers space even has seating for putting on shoes.

Quality in Craftsmanship and Installation

Nooks and special storage places for shoes, purses, and hats make this closet a fashionista’s must-have.

No more clothes on the floor. A built-in hamper keeps dirty laundry in one place until wash day.

Courtesy of Arizona Garage & Closet Design

“We all have busy lives, and being better organized helps with our day-to-day tasks.” —Mike Fetch

Finishing out a custom closet should be done with the same decorative eye and attention to detail as the rest of the home. The goal is to match the color and style of the other furniture and cabinets. Cool grays and greens in a clean contemporary or transitional design are popular right now, and classic white is always a smart choice. “White seems to never end; it always seems to be in style,” notes LeSueur. Finishing it out with seating, mirrors, chandeliers, and even artwork can really tie the space together and turn a closet into much more than just a closet.

Countertops · Vanities Fireplaces · BBQs · Bathtubs Showers · Tables · Commercial


Life+Style Southwest

by Elizabeth Sanchez

entertaining elegance

Pass on the plastic at your next party and treat your guests to a beautifully set table

Let’s face it—paper plates, plastic utensils, and throwaway cups are perfectly fine for low-key get-togethers. But for truly special events, setting the table to impress one’s guests is a return to elegant and thoughtful entertaining. When you take the time to set a table beautifully, you’re letting your guests know how special they are. These fun and attractive tablescaping ideas will make your next dinner party the talk of the town.

ACME Party Box Company Bubble Champagne Coupe Reminiscent of an earlier time when entertaining meant real stemware, these 1930s-inspired, stackable, gold-dotted champagne coupes encourage fun conversation. Each hand-blown coupe holds eight ounces of champagne or sparkling wine. Feeling flirty? Try stacking them in a classic cascade of bubbly! $15, urbAna,

Juliska Country Estate Ruby Dinnerware A spin-off of Juliska’s original Country Estate Flint Collection, the Country Estate Ruby Collection is embellished with jovial and rosy English winter scenes that will get you thinking about the upcoming holiday season. Complete your vintage-feel dinnerware with the host tray, tassel, scalloped dinner plate, baking dish, ramekin, comfort cup, and pie dish (all sold separately). $28–$112, The Linen Tree,

Crate&Barrel Rustic Bronze Metal Centerpiece Taper Candle Holder No table is complete without a centerpiece—and an eye-catching one at that. This carefully sculpted aluminum candle holder with its dark bronze finish is an elegant yet rustic melding of the contemporary world and the Iron Age. Five taper candles sit at different heights (the tallest is at 14 inches) to provide a warm, artistic glow. $60, Crate&Barrel, 18

Two Plates Full Beaded Spoon and Fork Hand-beded in Texas and gorgeously decorated with turquoise and amber, these Southwestreminiscent serving pieces are an elegant accompaniment to any table—and a great wedding gift. Pair them with the matching beaded pie server ($37).

Deborah Rhodes Hot Pink Napkin When it comes to setting an elegant table, real napkins deliver the wow factor. Made with soft linen and available in a variety of colors, these textural serviettes are fit for royalty, especially wrapped inside Main Dish’s antique, sterling silver napkin rings ($1,200, set of 6). Pass on the paper this time, and let your guests know how special they are with this perfect pairing of napkin and vintage napkin ring. $25, Main Dish,

Holland Boone Home Bow Tie Salad Servers Perfect for parties, picnics, or family dinners, these chic salad servers have a comfortable, user-friendly design and a smooth finish. Check out Holland Boone Home’s “Misshapen Bowl” and other smooth metalware bowls for pairing ideas.

$16 each, Two Plates Full,

Sweet Basil Tucson Woven Leather Table Runner To add pizzazz to a dinner gathering or for anytime decoration, this durable, hand-woven table runner features multicolored, Southwestern brown leather intricacies. At 13 inches wide by 78 inches long, it covers a 6-foot table and then some with a touchable, textural finish.

$19, Holland Boone Home,

$40, Sweet Basil,

Pier 1 Imports Amber Glimmer Strings Magical, grain-of-rice-sized LED lights are scattered across shapeable, thread-like silver filament, creating an illumination of imaginary fireflies or pixie dust. Try stringing them across awnings or around indoor wreaths, trees, centerpieces, or banisters. Available in lengths from 5 to 50 feet, these battery-powered, go-anywhere, bend-any-way lights are controlled with a simple touch of the LED Candle Remote (sold separately). $13–$70, Pier 1 Imports,



Life+Style Southwest

by Steve Thomas

Design it yourself? Not me. “Seek professional help” applies to homebuilding, too

Steve Thomas


n one of my early projects some 35 years ago my wife suggested we work with an old family friend who was a very successful and well-known New York designer. Fully convinced of my own capacity in that regard I proudly presented the designer, the late Marilyn Ruben, with my renovation plan, expecting praise and her blessing. Instead Marilyn said, very patiently, “Well, that’s a good start.” She then laid a piece of tracing paper over my design, and with swift, sure strokes of her pencil completely reconfigured my plan, spun the drawing around, and said, “Perhaps something like this.” Speechless, I started to get really defensive when I realized that her design was really great, and mine was, well, the work of an amateur. That’s when I learned the value of a really good design professional. I am very active—some architects and designers I’ve worked with (along with my wife) would complain way too active—in the design process, but I’ve come to understand that for a project to be successful you need a vigorous and independent voice for 20

S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

I’ve come to understand that for a project to be successful you need a vigorous and independent voice for design. Stephen would argue for design elements from the architectural point of view, and I would argue from the practical standpoints of cost and “buildability.” Sometimes he prevailed, sometimes I did, but most times a synthesis emerged that was probably the best design solution of all. Stephen would often stop by the job site on his way to or from his studio, check out the progress, and sketch revisions on the back of a 2x4. Then, I’d build it. The process was more like sculpture than architecture, and we had a blast. If you’re looking for a good designer or architect, here are some pointers. First and foremost, seek recommendations from friends. Go look at any prospect’s work. Interview them. Then ask yourself if their practice fits your job. An architect who principally does 8,000-square-foot adobe homes might not be the right fit for your 1,500-square-foot contemporary. Does their design work reflect your style? Did the prospective design professional listen to you—and to your

significant other? Ask them straight out how they charge: Will they fix-price the job, and what can you do to reduce their scope of work and therefore their fee? Ask them for recommendations, and take the time to go talk to those folks. This seems like a lot of work, but remember, it takes the same bricks and mortar to build a bad design as it does a good one. There are three buckets of cost in any project: workmanship, materials, and features. Design is the element that weaves them all together. You don’t want to compromise on workmanship, because poor build quality will come back to haunt you year after year. However, you can trim costs by eliminating features and by trading materials—polished concrete for costly Italian marble flooring, for example. There are dozens of trade-offs like this throughout a project. Where a design professional really earns his or her keep is to help you make these trade-offs so you can stay on budget and still achieve a great design.

Douglas Merriam

design. Probably the best illustration of this process was the project I did that was featured in this magazine several years ago (Su Casa, Winter 2013, “This Old Adobe”). The house, a small, Eastside Santa Fe adobe, required renovation from the ground up and redesign from the inside out. Santa Fe–based architectural designer Stephen Samuelson took on the challenge in a magnanimous gesture of friendship.

Above: Steve Thomas and architectural designer Stephen Samuelson collaborating on Thomas’s Santa Fe remodel. Their ongoing war cry “You design it, I’ll build it!” created a synergy and shared creativity between them that produced an efficient, elegant home design.

Steve Thomas is a home renovation expert and the spokesperson for Habitat for Humanity International.


ne of New Mexico’s most significant Santa Fe–style architects, Meem (1894–1933), PRESSJohn A Gaw BUTTON, was actually born in Brazil. In the first of three parts of Facing Southwest: The Life & Houses of John Gaw Meem, we learn that Meem’s American Episcopal missionary father and German-Brazilian mother sent the 16-year-old to school in the U.S. at the Virginia Military Institute, where he earned a B.S. in engineering by the age of 19. After serving in WWI as a captain in the U.S. Army, Meem contracted tuberculosis, which him at Santa Fe’s AU landed TOM ATED SH A DES BYSunmount Sanitarium for recovery treatment in 1921. Sunmount, itself an early example of Santa W IR ED , B AT TER Y OR to be hugely Fe–style architecture, proved MANUALLY OPER influential in Meem’s life,ATED along with the many renowned artistic residents he met there. After an intense internship in Denver threatened his health, Meem returned to Sunmount in 1924 and opened an tectural practice with fellow patient Cassius 480.599. 5897 McCormick. Local businesses and the Museum of New Mexico in 1912 were focusing on increasing the state’s tourist appeal, which spurred an architectural movement influenced by continued on page 47




Facing Southwest: The Life & Houses of John Gaw Meem, by Chris Wilson, photography by Robert Reck, W. W. Norton & Company, paperback, $35

“meem brought Santa Fe style to maturity.” —Chris Wilson

Transform your home and community! By shopping, donating and volunteering at Habitat ReStore, you become part of a movement dedicated to ensuring everyone has a decent place to live. Habitat ReStore’s ever-changing merchandise and one-of-a-kind finds give you the opportunity to be creative. Visit Habitat ReStore!


S U C A S A S U m m e r 2015



W. W. Norton & Company

reputation,” says Twombly, but that reputation would soon change, to be marked by personal scandal and tragedy Wright would be unable to fully shake. In 1909, Wright and Mamah Borthwick Cheney left behind their spouses and numerous children to pursue their affair. The couple was socially ostracized, and Wright’s commissions suffered. Further drama occurred in 1911 when Taliesin, Wright’s Spring Green, Wisconsin, residence, was set on fire by a workman who brutally murdered Borthwick and six others. For 14 years after Borthwick’s death, Wright struggled in his relationships and his career; his writing style and his tone changed after these significant life events, and he wrote of loss of faith in his profession. Nevertheless, Wright worked until his death in 1959, with the last decade and a half being some of his most productive years. The last speech in the collection is his acceptance of the American Institute of Architects’ gold medal in 1949, wherein he reiterates the challenge to his colleagues to think independently and touts organic architecture as a guiding principle. “. . . His idiosyncratic prose suggests a form of self-centeredness,” Twombly notes. “One wonders whether he had decided that he was his own best authority.”

here we go again

by Amy Gross Photographs by Chris Corrie

Experienced remodelers update their Paradise Valley home and make it truly their own


arely does it happen that potential homebuyers lay eyes on a house and say, “This is the perfect home. We wouldn’t change a thing!” Most new owners purchase a home knowing full well that something in it will need to be adapted, updated, or removed in order to make it “theirs.” Having renovated several houses, including the Paradise Valley residence they use in the winter and during holidays, Michelle and Scott Greer have learned it’s easy—well, relatively easy—to transform a house into “your” home simply by reworking a few key elements. First rule: Decide what your main reason is for buying the house in the first place. For the Greers, that was easy; one look out the living room windows sold them. “The views from the back of the house are amazing,” says Michelle. “We also loved the location and the flow of


S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

the house.” Indeed, the backyard, with its negative-edge pool, extensive landscaping, and hillside siting, affords an unobstructed view of Camelback Mountain from most rooms on the south side. Another important buying rule: Look for a home with good bones. Rod Cullum of Cullum Homes built this very home in 2002—a time he calls “the beginning of the Tuscan world.” Interestingly, 12 years later he was called in by the new owners, the Greers, to remodel it. “The lines of the house were pretty classic,” says Cullum, and that’s what made the renovation a smooth one. That, and the fact that his company already had firsthand knowledge of the home. “If you’re not remodeling a home you built, you never know what’s underneath it,” he says. Interior designer Cammy Cavan of Camilla Cavan Design, a 20-year veteran of the design business, had worked with

Through the gleaming, stainless steel and glass door by Neoporte, a large metal sculpture by Brad Howe is part of the entry experience. Above: A view of the front of the house with Camelback in the distance.

Adding stacked limestone to the fireplace wall gave the great room a clean, contemporary feel, while eliminating window mullions opened up the views. Circular Ralph Lauren chandeliers are dramatic geometric contrasts to the now sharply angular walls and built-in shelving.

Camilla Cavan Design, SUCASAMAGAZINE.COM


A variety of textural finishes—granite, limestone, stainless steel, wood—give the kitchen added depth. The owners opted to maintain a formal dining area (left) in addition to a low-key breakfast nook.

“We love one big great room!” says Michelle. The open-concept plan comprises comfortable living and seating areas, a wet bar, a breakfast nook, and the kitchen—all of which have wonderful south-facing views of Camelback Mountain.


S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

Scott’s office/library was reconfigured to increase cabinet space. Cammy Cavan added a masculine, textural wall covering and also worked with Rocky Mountain Hardware to custom-design the library’s leather and hand-cast bronze door hardware. SUCASAMAGAZINE.COM


Cullum on several other projects. When Cullum introduced her to the Greers, an immediate rapport was established, and this project became Cavan’s first remodel collaboration with the Cullum team. “In a remodel, you’re working through the same process as a new build and asking the homeowners the same question: How do you function in your day-to-day living?” Cavan explains. “In the end, your goal is to make sure everything is not only aesthetically pleasing, but functional.” With Michelle and Scott splitting their time between other homes in Utah and California, they weren’t on-site in Phoenix very often. Sometimes this is a good thing, as anyone who has lived in a home going through a remodel will understand, but certainly there’s always the possibility of a breakdown in communication when the clients aren’t present to voice opinions and personally lay hands on materials. Cavan communicated often with the Greers via emailed photos in transforming the outdated Tuscan interiors into a more contemporary style that fit not only their personalities but also the regional aesthetic. Michelle recalls, “We wanted to incorporate materials into the remodel that reflected the desert—such as stone, rather than marble.” Cavan agrees. “It was important the home feel like an Arizona home, not a Colorado home,” she says. “We were going for a more contemporary style, but not a cold contemporary.” 26

S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

Above, left and right: The team reconfigured the master bath from a standard side-by-side space into separate his-and-hers vanities, dressing areas, and closets. Lighter colors, fresh finishes, and uncomplicated furniture opened up all of the areas to create a master suite experience.

Updates in the powder room were purely cosmetic but dramatic: a fresh veneer on the vanity, and on the walls, a natural, handmade, textured wallpaper with metallic studs by Phillips Jeffries and iridescent mosaic tile from Arizona Tile.

“In a remodel, you’re working through the same process as a new build and asking the homeowners the same question: How do you function in your day-to-day living?”—Cammy Cavan



The Greers love to display the art they’ve acquired from their travels, such as a painting by Spanish-born American painter Esteban Vicente (above) and several metal sculptures (above, right) by Brad Howe. 28

S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

The renovation, which took about a year, resulted in a blend of traditional design elements with modern finishes and furnishings, in a style Cavan describes as “transitional modern.� Dated design features such as mullions in the living room windows, niches and arches over the kitchen cooktop wall, and a circular ceiling design over the dining nook were removed or replaced with flat surfaces and clean, rectilinear lines. Muted neutral palettes of white and sand were a refreshing changeup

from heavy Tuscan reds and yellows, as were sexy, modern finishes like natural textured wallpaper and mosaic tile. Replacing the heavy wood front door with a sleek, stainless steel and glass version by Neoporte Modern Door and installing a colorful, contemporary metal sculpture by American artist Brad Howe in the entry created “a whole arrival experience,” says Cullum. Bold lighting choices throughout the home from designers Hubbardton Forge and Ralph Lauren created instant drama, from the breakfast nook and formal dining room to the living room and Scott’s masculine library/office. The kitchen’s transformation was aesthetically impressive, though the team opted to keep the layout intact because it was already quite functional. A custom hood was commissioned as a focal point against the new stacked-stone backsplash wall, but to keep costs in line, the cabinets were restained in an espresso hue rather than replaced. Michelle, who is not a fan of what she calls “nonfunctional, tiny vegetable sinks,” opted for two generously sized sinks for easy division of cooking and cleaning responsibilities. One sink is set into the stained walnut butcher block countertop of the center island, a surprisingly—and charmingly—rustic touch in the largely contemporary kitchen. While most of the home’s remodeling changes were cosmetic, there were some alterations made to the footprint and a few walls moved around— most notably in the master bathroom, which was expanded, updated with contemporary finishes, and divided into his-and-hers vanity areas with large, walk-in closets. The former fitness room was closed off; today it is Michelle’s office, where she enjoys dreamy mountain views from her desk. They are views she hopes to get back to in the next few months. She and Scott are currently in the middle of yet another hoe renovation project—their home in Santa Barbara, California. Michelle concedes that they might be considered “serial remodelers,” but others might call them just plain smart. Rather than looking (and paying) for the “perfect” house, the Greers have found another one with good bones that meets their criteria for comfort and location. It just needs a little customizing to make it truly their own. And that, they’ve discovered, is half the fun.

Step Into Elegance State of the Art Technology Meets Time Honored Craftsmanship

Experience the strength and sophistication of Neoporte Modern Door

5411 W Orange Dr. Glendale, AZ 85301 t: 877.711.2100

Visit our gallery: www.neopor “We wanted to incorporate materials into the remodel that reflected the desert.” —Michelle Greer

Right: The backyard is a virtual oasis in the desert, with an infinity-edge pool, a fire pit, comfortable seating areas, and beautiful landscaping. The one thing the homeowners had no reason to change during their remodel? The amazing mountain views. SUCASAMAGAZINE.COM


comfortable reality Visionaries turn an abandoned shell into an eminently livable residence

Creative Concepts, 480-227-7656 30

S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

by Bill Kurtz, AIA Photographs by Chris Corrie

Left: Julie and Ed Hamlin make a great design-build team as they slowly bring their home to completion. Rustic gates (above) surrounded by exposed adobe offer a regal welcome to the enclosed front courtyard (opposite) decorated in traditional Southwestern style.


ust a hop east across the Verde River, a skip north along Highway 89 toward Payson, and a slight jump west from the turn-off to Saguaro Lake, Ed and Julie Hamlin are loving their place. Each time they return to the comfort of their home, Ed says, “It makes us smile.” Rustic wood gates identify the entry to the Hamlins’ Sonoran Desert abode. The private courtyard teases visitors as to their diverse personal tastes, with its decorative Mexican

tiles, authentic exposed adobe walls, expanses of Arizona-quarried flagstone, rustic woodwork, and comfortable furniture. The couple acquired their home in a bank sale a few years ago and have been slowly nurturing it for good living. Admittedly, it’s come a long way. When they first kicked—yes, kicked—open the front door, they were confronted with cracking wood and piling dust. Even then, large spaces wrapped with beautiful masonry softened that first impression; the potential was obvious. “I’m a builder by trade,” Ed says. “When I walked in, I said, ‘This is nothin’. Let’s just finish it up.’” Despite Ed’s experience, he and Julie wisely chose not to venture in alone. “We got a lot of cooperation from a lot of very dear SUCASAMAGAZINE.COM


friends,” Ed says. Intuitively, they invited the original designer, Humberto Urbina of Creative Concepts, to finish what he had started with the prior owner. Ed felt it was important that Urbina “keep the same jiggle”—his way of expressing a desire for the home to be completed by the original talent. Seasoned in homebuilding since childhood and in interior design since college, Urbina, now in his 70s, describes himself as a project manager. He wears many hats, including that of lead designer. “It’s an endeavor that takes a lot of listening,” Urbina says of his process. The teamwork between himself, the owners, and his selected design and construction talent “has to be a correlated effort” wherein each participant recognizes their dependency on another. Critical in the collaboration is project supervisor Manuel Pacheco. He and Urbina have shared a respectful working relationship for 25 years. Pacheco’s touch is felt throughout the home, from the hand-tooled door frames and ceiling beams to tile installation and fabricated Right: Tile- and flagstoneclad stairs and an appropriately dramatic archway lead to the expansive kitchen area from the foyer. In this hacienda-like home, tile was an important design element, and Humberto Urbina, Manuel Pacheco, and the Hamlins frequently collaborated on its placement.


S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

Word word word word word word word word word word word word word word word word word word word word word word. Word word word word word word word word word word word word word word word word word word word word word word.

The butterfly-shaped island accommodates a slew of people when Julie and Ed’s teenaged and adult children come to visit. Despite its modern conveniences and finishes, the kitchen feels comfortable and homey.

“We hang out in the kitchen more than anywhere else. . . . We’re a social house. We might be suddenly cooking gravy, biscuits, bacon, and eggs for 30 people.” —Julie Hamlin

metal features. The Hamlins are big fans of his work. “We love Manuel!” Julie professes. In researching various sources for adobe, Urbina soaked a variety of samples in water to compare tendencies toward decay, and found the one he wanted from a California company. The double-thick (22-inch) adobe walls—exposed on the inside and out—offer rich transitions at each doorway and window recess. Ed and Julie enjoy the large, uninterrupted roof spans, which were fabricated, says Urbina, “with a lot of steel” from Agate Steel in Scottsdale, though it is purposely hidden. Listening to Urbina’s descriptions of the ingredients in his plaster work is similar to hearing a chef chatting on the Food Network. His plaster “recipe” (which calls for hand-troweling the ceilings and walls) creates wonderful variation in both color and reflected light. Rooms, which are numerous and sprawling in this home, are strategically composed along the slope of challenging hillside conditions. Ceiling heights vary from roughly 15 feet in the foyer and living room to a cozier nine feet in the bedrooms and the library, which is situated a few steps up from the great room. SUCASAMAGAZINE.COM


A floor-to-ceiling, see-through fireplace separates a cozy sitting space (at right) from the more formal living area with its plush furniture, dramatic chandeliers, and electic dĂŠcor. The large wooden fish on the coffee table was a spontaneous must-have Ed purchased in the Caribbean. 34

S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

Up again from the living area is the kitchen, a space large enough to comfortably hold a round dining table, a sitting area with a sofa, and plenty of guests. “We hang out in the kitchen more than anywhere else,” Julie explains. “My kids are younger; his kids are older. . . . We’re a social house. We might be suddenly cooking gravy, biscuits, bacon, and eggs for 30 people.” Countertops are clad in granite from Chivino Surfaces, and Julie has stocked the kitchen solely with Viking appliances for heavy-duty use. Ed is “baker and maker” in his relationship with Julie. He’s the lead chef with respect to kitchen activities, and as a cabinetmaker (he and his Mesa-based company, Bass Cabinet Manufacturing, finished the cabinetry throughout the home), he guides the ongoing home refinements. Among the endless projects they have undertaken, Ed takes credit for modifying the oversized front door with the addition of small panes to bring natural light into the once dark interior entryway. For her part, Julie is the collector and the decorator, describing her taste as “comfortable eclectic.” (“Who knows where she gets her stuff?” Ed jokes.) Julie has the knack for repurpos-

The Hamlins’ Western art and furniture is a perfect aesthetic complement to their home’s exposed adobe walls and traditional Southwest-style wood doorways, lintels, and corbels. Above, right: A bathroom blends modern fixtures with rustic antiques.



ing found items and for finding that just-right location for their things, whether items retained from childhood or prior jobs, or spur-of-the-moment flea market purchases. “It seems to work,” Ed says of his wife’s process. “She has good taste as far as I’m concerned.” Despite its dramatic transformation from dust-covered frame to impressive, livable space, the Hamlins’ home is still a work in progress. “We’re slow go,” Julie says with a smile. Currently, they’re trying out backsplash options in the kitchen, but so far with no final decisions. Even though many such considerations are still up in the air, Ed and Julie have clearly finalized hundreds of decisions together since moving into their home and remain firmly committed to the vision shared a few years ago when they decided to kick their way into an abandoned house for a closer look. That first dusty view offered a fortunate peek toward their future—a future that today is their comfortable reality.

The master bath leans heavily on antiques and eclectic furnishings and accents.


S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

Below: Plastered in a soft green hue, elegantly furnished, and with wonderful views from an attached balcony, Julie’s master bedroom is her favorite spot in the home. Peter, a handsome Sphynx cat, seems to love it as well.

Balconies and overlooks strategically placed around the home and casita afford the Hamlins forever views of their beloved Sonoran Desert.

Curved walls, clay roof tiles, and exposed adobe bricks give the home a castle-like feel, but colorful Talavera tile (left) is a definite sign that this beautiful home is firmly rooted in the Southwest.

Ed felt it was important that Urbina “keep the same jiggle” —his way of expressing a desire for the home to be completed by the original talent. SUCASAMAGAZINE.COM


Green Living

growing green

by Elizabeth Sanchez


magine being able to boost the amount of indoor oxygen in a building, lower your own cortisol levels and blood pressure, and reduce absenteeism at work, simply by adding plants to your home or office. Joe Zazzera, co-owner of Scottsdale-based Plant Solutions (plantsolutions .com) and a LEED Accredited Professional, builds living walls that do just those things. Humans “are calmer and more productive when we are able to have not only natural light, but also natural living things around us,” says Zazzera, paraphrasing a theory called the biophilia hypothesis. “Indoor living walls provide a connection to that innate need.” Plant Solutions installs living walls for customers using greenery grown in a substrate and mounted to a vertical frame. “Typically, you’re looking at a structure that’s mounted to the wall,” says Zazzera, who sees living walls as “works of art, as opposed to mere accessories.” His installation process is complex; only after surveying the desired location of the wall thoroughly will he pursue a formulaic installation. Zazzera bases his actions on the space’s “context of installation,” meaning lighting, water sources, and temperature. He even visits the wall after it’s been set up. “No matter how well you design a living wall, you’re never going to know how well it’s going to operate until it’s physically installed,” he explains. Living walls have various uses, which include oxygenation of interior spaces and air filtration; when wrapped around the outer walls of homes, they can even provide additional cooling and insulation. Of course, more tangible uses include growing fresh vegetables and herbs for homes, restaurants, bars, hotels, and schools. And fresher is always better, says Alex Billingsley, owner of Flower Street Urban Gardens ( in Phoenix. “Your food is grown organically, sustainably, and in the most healthy way that you can,” says Billingsley. “It’s so much fresher than what you can even get at a farmers market, Right: Planting boxes from Flower Street Urban Gardens transform a utilitarian concrete wall into an explosion of color and fragrance.


S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

Joe Zazzera–Plant Solutions

Living walls bring fresh air to the home and fresh food to the table

Alex Billingsley

Alex Billingsley

because it’s just minutes from being picked.” Unlike the living walls developed by Plant Solutions, Flower Street Urban Gardens’ products are usually—though not always— installed in outdoor settings. The company produces and sells do-it-yourself kits that can be mounted almost anywhere, ideal for places with limited or difficult gardening space. “For most of [our] applications, all you need is a tape measure and about 30 minutes, and you’ve assembled a vertical garden,” Billingsley says. Flower Street Urban Gardens’ metal bracketing systems use boltless, U-shaped hooks for outdoor applications on balconies, block walls, pool fences, and more. Indoor applications require bolted brackets. If needed, an entirely mobile system is also available. The boxes, made of sustainably grown redwood with drainable liners carrying the soil, are sold in tiers. The tier structure allows excess water to fall into the lower tiers and be caught by the trays below for easy draining or recycling of the water. A simple drip irrigation system is recommended once a day for eight minutes during the hottest part of the day to keep the plant roots cool. Therapeutic, healthful, and functional, these green structures are beautiful and easy to maintain, adding life to spaces where there once was none.

Joe Zazzera–Plant Solutions

Living walls soften and add color to a downtown rooftop sitting area. Opposite: Stressed-out employees at a local business can take a moment to enjoy the peaceful greenness of a living wall designed by Plant Solutions.

Alex Billingsley

Food grown in a living wall “is so much fresher than what you can even get at a farmers market, because it’s just minutes from being picked,” says Alex Billingsley.

Above, top: The bounty from a living wall includes a variety of colorful peppers. Above, bottom: Circular moss art installations from Plant Solutions.



Su Cocina

a taste of the high desert Aridus Wine Company serves up sophisticated dry wines by the glass in Old Town story and photographs by Amy Gross


was taking in ArtWalk in Old Town Scottsdale one blazingly hot Thursday evening a few months ago when my rescuer appeared. Mind you, I wasn’t actually looking for a rescuer, or even thinking I needed one, for that matter, but when Mathew Butson whisked me inside Aridus Wine Company’s air-conditioned (and gorgeous) tasting room, I did let myself swoon a little from the heat. A wine tasting? Sure, why not? It was 104 degrees, after all, and a girl needs to hydrate. Matt, as it turns out, was an excellent tasting guide, and within seconds I was presented with Aridus’s 2012 chardonnay—blissfully chilled. Matt suggests it will “smell like green apple, but as soon as it hits the palate there’ll be a light creaminess to it with a caramel-vanilla-oak finish.” I’ve never been a huge fan of chardonnays, but this one stops me in my tracks—green but honeyed, with a complex citrus, peach, and even peppery finish. I eagerly toss back the rest of the wine in the glass and decide it’s time I stop whining about the heat and start paying attention. As he pours and I sip, Matt explains that Aridus is a relatively young winery, started by Scott and Joan Dahmer in 2012. The winery’s custom crush facility Aridus opened its tasting room in Old Town Scottsdale this past spring, the northern sister to the company’s custom crush location and tasting room in Willcox.


S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

A private tasting room in the rear of the store can be reserved and rented for larger gatherings of wine lovers.

This chardonnay stops me in my tracks—green but honeyed, with a complex citrus, peach, and even peppery finish.


Aimee Pearl walks visitors through a selection of red wines in Aridus’s rustic-modern tasting room.

Following a tasting (or in lieu of one), chic, comfortable seating invites guests to sip on a glass of their favorite vintage.

and its other tasting room are located in vineyardsaturated Willcox, a little east of Tucson. The tasting room on Main Street at North Scottsdale Road has only been open a few months. Sparkling clean, architecturally hip and sexy, and sporting a huge wine dinner table in the back for private tastings, it’s a secret begging to be discovered by Valley oenophiles. “As a custom crush facility, Aridus is able to make wine for smaller growers who may not have the capital up front to build their own winery,” Matt explains. I can’t help but notice he’s very good at talking while pouring, and suddenly I have a viognier in my glass. Expecting the SUCASAMAGAZINE.COM


Kaiser Garage Doors & Gates Custom


Overlay $100 off for single car garage $200 off for two car garage

Call for specials on custom crafted gates and gate openers.

941 W. 23rd Tempe, Arizona 85282 | 480.967.1100

Matt Butson pours a decanted sample of the 2013 Aridus Syrah.

Commercial License #119480 and Residential License #116382



Chris Corrie

inspiration ideas resources

Subscribe today at or call (818) 286-3162


S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

sweetness of a French-style viognier, I discover this one is sweet on the nose but light and dry—a great complement to Asian cuisine, Matt says. I’m underwhelmed by the 2014 grenache rosé, but I’m admittedly hard to please when it comes to rosés. We switch to reds, and I do much better. I also pick up some tasting mates, a cheerful, local couple who know their Arizona wines, and begin chatting with Aimee Pearl, another friendly Aridus employee. The 2013 zinfandel, which has been aged in oak for 17 months, has hints of spice and raspberry and pairs well with the dark chocolate I’m offered. The two syrahs on offer are completely different; reminiscent of leather (the 2012) and dried, tart cherry (the 2013), they round out my tasting perfectly. It’s been a fun 45 minutes, and I reluctantly give up my space at the bar to other wine lovers. There’s no debate about the wine I’ll take home; the chardonnay had bewitched me from that first sip. The bottle is $35, and my purchase waives the $10 tasting fee. Had I joined Aridus’s wine club, I would have also received 30 percent off that purchase, plus 20 percent off future purchases. My newly met tasting buddies are seriously considering joining the club—as well they should. As serious wine drinkers, they know a good investment when they taste it. Aridus Wine Company Tasting Room,


by James Selby

a taste of heaven Expand your wine knowledge one delicious sip at a time


ow do you learn about wine? Taste, taste, taste. Local wine shops regularly offer consumer tastings—gratis, or for a modest fee. Wine festivals and special events proffer as many as 60 to 100 wines for easy sampling. To help you enjoy participating in a tasting, here are some tips and etiquette. At your favorite wine emporiums, ask to be signed up for emails announcing their tastings. Best not to put away a three-course meal before attending one; your senses should be alert and ready to perceive aromas and flavors. Likewise, going into a tasting on a completely empty stomach won’t do you any favors, either. Larger venues and festival events will have food, but most in-store tastings are casual, with a half-dozen or more wines of a particular va-

Try everything. Don’t pass on whites because you only like cabernet. Broadening your palate will expand your knowledge and pleasure. riety, region, or winemaker on offer. Rarer are vertical tastings (the same wine from different vintages) or horizontal (same type of wine in a single vintage). Wines will be arranged in order from the lightest and simplest to the most full and complex. Try everything. Don’t pass on

whites because you only like cabernet. Broadening your palate will expand your knowledge and pleasure. Wine shops will provide disposable cups at a tasting; it’s perfectly correct—and polite—to use the same cup throughout. You’re welcome to bring your own wine glass since it will enhance tasting of the wines and allow you to see and smell them better. If packing glass seems risky, consider reusable, stemless acrylicware like that made by Govino. It gets crowded around a tasting table. Don’t be shy about putting your arm out to get a sample, then step out of the fray and focus on your taste. Use the “Six S” method: See, Swirl, Smell, Sip, Savor, Spit. “That’s disgusting!” a woman said to me at a tasting. “People are spitting in that bucket!” “But, madam,” I replied, “it’s a ‘spit bucket.’” “Well, I’m not spitting!” she said indignantly. Remember that a dozen one-ounce samples is equivalent to half a bottle of wine. Don’t let your enthusiasm for new wines impair your ability to judge them, let alone drive afterward. Take notes you can refer back to. The wine shop may provide printed handouts for this, or you can bring a designated journal. Moleskine makes several specifically for wine. Tastings are a wonderful way to sample a slew of different wines—at little to no cost—so that you can make informed decisions about how to invest your wine dollars later. Be safe, ask questions, and have fun! James Selby has directed wine programs in New York, Portland, and Santa Fe, where he lives and works as a wine consultant and writer.

who’s pouring? Whether you’re a novice wine drinker or dedicated oenophile, there’s a wine tasting event happening around the Valley you should check out. Here’s a sample (pun intended) of just a few of the many wine bars, wineries, and restaurants in the area that regularly offer tastings.

Terroir Wine Pub

7001 N Scottsdale Rd #157, Scottsdale 480-922-3470 Thursdays are tasting nights; any three wines on the By the Glass list are $10.

Su Vino Winery

7035 E Main, Ste 110, Scottsdale 480-994-8466 The tasting bar offers five tastes of wine for $10, chocolate and wine flights, and wines by the glass and bottle.

Central Wine

4236 N Central, Ste 101, Phoenix 602-812-7343 Regular tastings on Thursdays, Saturday tasting classes for $25, and more. See website for dates and details.

Lawrence Dunham Vineyards Wine Gallery

6951 E 1st St, Scottsdale 480-664-4822 “Flights & Bites” on Thursday evenings from 5:30– 8:00 PM in collaboration with Food Truck Caravan Catering. $25; four wine tastes or one glass of wine paired with food. Menu changes weekly.

Betty’s Nosh

6685 W Beardsley Rd, Glendale 623-561-6674 Huge selection of wines by the glass, a mushroom bar, and complimentary wine tastings on Thursdays from 5:30–7:30 PM.

Total Wine & More

8 locations in Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tempe, Gilbert, Glendale, and Goodyear Free weekly wine tastings with staff-picked themes. See website for details.

Rhythm and Wine

7605 E Pinnacle Peak Rd, Scottsdale 480-478-6999 Offering wine flights from $12–$20: Chardonnays, Big Reds, Cabernets, and “Back in Blanc.”



Vida Buena

by Donna Schillinger

hot springs


Soak, stay, and recharge at one of the Southwest’s ancient mineral springs


or more than 3,000 years, Native Americans have sought health and healing in nature’s mineral waters. Try it once, and you’ll understand why. Onsite lodging makes these Southwest-area springs an ideal weekend recharge any time of the year.

Riverbend Hot Springs

Riverbend Hot Springs’ Riverside Rock Pools (here and right, bottom) run between 100–104 degrees, making them perfect for longer soaks.


S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

rustic relaxation

Ojo Caliente’s round Kiva Pool is based on traditional design and is centered between the Cliffside, Plaza, and Pueblo suites.

Long considered sacred by the Apache and Mimbres tribes, the mineral-rich water of Riverbend Hot Springs (riverbend is just a short walk from shops and dining in historic downtown Truth or Consequences, in Southern New Mexico. Soak by the hour or as part of an overnight retreat at this serene environment geared toward couples and families with children 12 and older. Expect an intimate connection with nature, says General Manager Jake Foerstner. “Since we are the only all-outdoor springs on the Rio Grande, guests can marvel at not only the breathtaking vistas of the Caballo Mountains, but also a plethora of migratory birds and other wildlife.” Purchase a one-hour pass ($10, free for overnight guests) to visit five public pools of different temperatures. Lounge on the shaded patio, relax in the barrel sauna, or take a cool dip in the clear Rio Grande. Private pools, walled on three sides but open to the riverside mountain view, are clothing optional with their own cooling misters, decks, and seating. Fifty-minute sessions are a reasonable $10 for overnight guests and $15 more for day visitors.

Riverbend Hot Springs

Sacred to eight Northern Pueblo tribal communities, waters at the familyfriendly Ojo Caliente Mineral Springs Resort & Spa ( in Ojo Caliente, New Mexico, offer four mineral soaks: iron, soda, arsenic, and opening in 2016, a lithia pool. “This area will be enhanced with ramadas, hammocks, and expanded seating, which we believe will be an exciting addition to our loyal Ojo guests,” says Marketing Director Wendi Gelfound. Lodging ranges from camping to the Cliffside suites with kiva fireplaces, private outdoor soaking tubs, and private back patios facing the spectacular cliffs and Pueblo ruins that border the springs. Cliffside, Plaza, and Pueblo suite guests enjoy extended soaking hours in the new circular Kiva pool. The Artesian Restaurant offers farm-to-table freshness. Midweek day-use specials include Soak and Stretch: yoga plus springs access ($27); and the clothing-optional Private Pool and Springs Special, which includes entry for two to the springs, mud pool, steam room, and sauna, as well as two daytime hours in a private pool ($90). Ojo offers a senior and military discount, as well as free entry to the springs for New Mexico residents on their birthday.

Julien McRoberts

the hot eye

Courtesy of The Springs Resort & Spa

The Sunset Social Pool is one of The Springs’ larger soaking tubs. Up to 20 guests can watch the sun go down while relaxing in waters that average between 98–105 degrees.

$200 off installation project of $2000 or more or 1/2 off first month’s maintenance bill

adventure plus

For more variety in a hot springs getaway, The Springs Resort & Spa ( in Pagosa Springs, Colorado, offers river rafting, hot air ballooning, train rides, and tours of ruins—all of which can be packaged with lodging and soaking in the waters of the world’s deepest geothermal spring, Great Pagosa Hot Springs. “All adventures, romantic or ecotourism, usually end with a relaxing soak in one of our 23 independent mineral tubs, especially as all of our hotel guests receive exclusive 24-hour-a-day soaking privileges,” says proprietor Nerissa Whittington. “We are nestled along the banks of the San Juan River and face a wonderful hiking spot, Reservoir Hill.” Four levels of passes (adult $26–$53, child $14–$29) include the 18 family-friendly pools with canteen. Platinum amenities include robes, towels, lockers, reentry, and the adult-only Relaxation Terrace—five pools that overlook the river, with a waterfall, a Roman shower, and a jetted tub. All lodging, from doubles to suites that sleep six, include Platinum privileges; a new building, the EcoLuxe Hotel, is one of only Simplicity, 22 LEED-certifiedAhotels in the nation. Spa Male-Concept

D ES I GN · CR EATE · M A I N TA I N Founded in 1958, Landscaping by André is an award winning landscape contracting company offering design, installation and maintenance services. Our mission is to bring to life your extraordinary vision for an outdoor space, by utilizing our experience and innovation. We are licensed, bonded and insured.


Stacey Grondahl

Courtesy of The Springs Resort & Spa

Tequila Shooter Facial, $31

“The only place a guy needs to know about when it comes to skincare, massages, and manscaping!” says one satisfied customer of this (mostly) male Scottsdale spa. Try a blue agave–based treatment called the Tequila Shooter Facial (a.k.a. Balls in Your Face). Men’s Spa Week (June 19–26) honors dads with Papa-pampering specials.

Courtesy of The Springs Resort & Spa

Left: An array of skincare products for men at Simplicity, A Male-Concept Spa.

The Spa at The Boulders Intuitive Herbal Body Buff, $140

The Intuitive Herbal Body Buff at The Spa at The Boulders invites guests to handWalk across a wooden bridge select herbs andfrom otherthe main pool to reach The Cliffs pool. ingredients from theThe spa’s pool and its patio area offer up-close Organic Garden to create views of mineral-covered formations. a custom body polish. A luxurious treatment



dinner party revival UrbAna inspires a new generation to discover the lost art of elegant entertaining by Amy Gross Photographs by Chris Corrie


he woman in the black-and-white photo was elegantly dressed, perfectly coiffed, and completely put together in a patterned blouse and crisp white skirt. She might easily have been out on the town, but in fact she was slapping black paint on window frames set up on sawhorses. “She wasn’t posing for a picture; she was dressed the way she dressed every day, which was very well,” says Brian Wells of his grandmother, the late Hazel Wells. His wife Ana, who was especially struck by Hazel’s grace and flair, was equally amazed a few years later when she discovered Mrs. Wells’s entertaining diary, a journal of birthday parties, tailgaters, and dinner get-togethers that detailed who attended each event, what was served, photos, and recipes. “This was our aha moment,” says Ana. “If we were ever going to make it happen, this was our inspiration.” UrbAna ( became the boutique that Ana, whose retail experience includes

10 years with Anthropologie, had long dreamed of owning. Located on the edge of Arcadia in the same shopping center as Flower Child, the sparkling new shop that blends its owners’ first names and is filled with gifts, décor, kitchen items, and entertaining products is at once homey, hip, urban, and genteel—a direct reflection of its young proprietors, their love of entertaining, and Arcadia’s midcentury roots. “We like the midcentury thing, but we’re more modern, more urban,” explains Brian, whose own retail experience includes training and opening stores for Tommy Bahama. “UrbAna is more about that culture of the ’50s and ’60s, where everybody entertained. Everybody had dinner parties; it was something you were supposed to do. We’re in a good spot for it—this neighborhood really gets that.” The Wellses asked architect Cathy Hayes of Hayes Inc. Architecture/Interiors (hayesstudio .com) to help them turn a plain space with zero ambience into a charming boutique with func-

UrbAna is homey, hip, urban, and genteel—a direct reflection of its young proprietors, their love of entertaining, and Arcadia’s midcentury roots.

Above: A farmhouse “kitchen” at the rear of the store displays cooking and tablescaping items. SUCASAMAGAZINE.COM


Large double doors at the front of the store let in natural light and encourage passersby to stop and check out new and seasonal vignettes.

tional product displays and an inviting, oldtimey storefront. Hayes, whose design credits include La Grande Orange and Revo Burrito (now Mexx 32), is, like Brian and Ana, an Arcadia resident herself and passionate about this eminently walkable, self-sustaining community. “Cathy is really one of the first professionals we met who really echoed what we were hoping,” says Brian. “We suggested maybe there was this shopping and dining renaissance going on in Phoenix, and she put a stamp on that and said, yes, there is!” In designing urbAna’s spaces, Hayes says, “I wanted to make sure we wouldn’t outshine the product Brian and Ana were going to put in, or that they couldn’t keep changing it as they grew and as their product grew.” A fan of what she calls “little vignettes,” Hayes suggested that as merchandisers they use familiar objects—a table here, a sofa or wing chair there—to create focal points, with ample shelving and a kitchen element in the back to showcase product. Wheeled tables and carts stacked with dinnerware, glassware, and party products easily roll around to create new merchandising vignettes or to make room for in-store events such as cocktail parties, yoga classes, and giveback nights for the American Cancer Society. Brian notes that the team actually reduced the square footage of the space in order to create usable space beyond the front windows. Hayes, working with Alexander Building Company, added large double doors—an homage to the Arcadian ’50s-style ranch house—that remain

Left: A festive table setting complete with placemats, china, silverware, glassware, and ribbon. Above: The perfect gift for a Scotch drinker: glasses, a metallic decanter, and a cocktail tray to serve everything on.


S U C A S A A utumn 2015

“Our customer likes to support local, she loves to know the story behind the items, and she lives in Arcadia. She’s our neighbor.”— Ana Wells open during good weather and allow for the setup of fun outdoor vignettes beneath the jauntily painted striped awning. “We literally drew Brian and Ana’s space out so that we could draw customers in,” says Hayes. UrbAna, which launched just before Thanksgiving in 2014, has attracted a dedicated and largely female clientele. “Our customer likes to support local, she loves to know the story behind the items, and she lives in Arcadia. She’s our neighbor,” says Ana. Popular products right now include vintage, silver-plated cheese markers; candles made by local businesses Mame and Standard Wax; Le Cadeaux melamine dinnerware that looks like real china; and marble and wood pedestals and cheese boards from India. The shop carries products in a wide range of prices, which is perfect for couples looking for an eclectic wedding registry location, or for young people looking to develop their own entertaining style without breaking the bank. “Brian and Ana have infused their space with graciousness and then let other young people realize that [joy of] throwing a fun little party,” says Hayes. “I love that they’re learning to express a new art of entertaining for this whole generation.” “We love to have people at our house, and it always seems like ours is the house people gravitate to,” says Ana Wells (on right, with architect Cathy Hayes). “The shop revolved around that idea: anything you might need to host or attend a dinner party.” SUCASAMAGAZINE.COM


Vida Buena

by Amy Gross

Photographs by Chris Corrie

walk the Walk What’s new on the gallery scene? ArtWalk will bring you up to speed, one step at a time.


t certain times of the year, Main Street and Marshall Way in Old Town Scottsdale are packed with visitors; other times (you know when!) things are much quieter. ArtWalk, a 40-year tradition, still brings art lovers, collectors, and the art curious out on Thursday evenings to stroll, dine, and see what’s new on the gallery scene. “It what we’re known for—all around the country,” says Jane Phillips, secretary of the Scottsdale Gallery Association, which has presented ArtWalk since 1975. “Every single Thursday night—except Thanksgiving—we’re open from 7 to 9 PM.” Special ArtWalks—there are 10 throughout the year—often piggyback on other other events going on in and around Scottsdale, such as the Collectors ArtWalk in January that coincides with the classic car auctions in town. These special events often include art openings, food, and live music. This fall, as the weather cools and tourists and part-time residents make their return to Central Arizona, look for the Anniversary ArtWalk (October 22), which celebrates the kickoff to the cultural high season. The annual Fall for


S U C A S A A utumn 2015

the Arts ArtWalk is on November 12 this year, coinciding with Bonner David Galleries’ hosting of the American Women Artists’ 2015 Master & Signature Member Show and National Juried Exhibition. The popular Holiday ArtWalk starts off the season of shopping and celebration on December 10. ArtWalk has expanded and evolved over its four-decade run, with the addition of free shuttle service, more galleries participating (roughly 30 at any time), a paint-out and a live auction, and in-gallery artist demonstrations, among many other improvements. The variety of art available for viewing continues to be impressive: Western paintings and sculpture (The Legacy Gallery); works from living masters of the former Soviet Union (Gallery Russia); nature photography (Nature Exposed Photography); artist-produced work (Amery Bohling Fine Art, Carstens Fine Art); and much, much more. So pick a Thursday—any Thursday—and put on those walking shoes. ArtWalk is about enjoying art—at your own pace. ArtWalk, Thursdays 7–9 PM, Main Street and Marshall Way, Old Town Scottsdale,

ArtWalk brings art lovers, collectors, and the art curious out on Thursday evenings to stroll, dine, and see what’s new on the gallery scene. ArtWalk galleries showcase works ranging from contemporary and classic American and European artists to photography to Native American–made jewelry, pottery, and textiles.

word words words word words words word words words word words words word words words word



what’s happening? Courtesy of Phoenix Art Museum

September through November

ZAC BROWN BAND October 8, 7 PM Ak-Chin Pavilion $40–$110 With 16 singles on the Billboard country charts—10 of which have reached number one—Atlanta-based Zac Brown Band is one of the hottest acts in country music today. Enjoy an evening under the stars with the eight-man band famous for tunes such as “Chicken Fried,” “Highway 20 Ride,” and “Toes.”

MUSICAL INSTRUMENT MUSEUM Open daily, 9 AM–5 PM 4725 East Mayo Blvd, Phoenix $10–$20, kids under 3 free The world’s only global musical instrument museum has a collection of over 15,000 items. Visit September 5–6 for the third annual Experience India event celebrating East Indian music and culture. Enjoy German music and dancing, Oktoberfest-style, during Experience the Alps, October 3–4. ARIZONA FALL RESTAURANT WEEK September 18–27 $33 or $44 prix fixe Foodies eagerly welcome the opportunity to sample gourmet three-course dinners at the area’s best restaurants during this annual event. Check out the participating restaurants in Phoenix, Scottsdale, Chandler, Glendale and other areas online, and make your reservations early. 52

S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

Bentley Scottsdale Polo Championships

THE PRINCESS BRIDE: AN INCONCEIVABLE EVENING WITH CARY ELWES November 14, 7:30 PM Chandler Center for the Arts $30–$125 The Princess Bride (1987) has been ranked as one of the top 100 love stories of all time by the American Film Institute. Following a screening of the movie, actor Cary Elwes (the dashing Westley) will lead a moderated discussion about its classic scenes, the antics that went on behind the scenes, and many other inconceivable tidbits about this much-beloved—and quoted—film.

5th ANNUAL BENTLEY SCOTTSDALE POLO CHAMPIONSHIPS October 24, 10:30 AM–7 PM WestWorld, Scottsdale $17.50, free for kids under 12, veterans, and active military In addition to three great polo matchups (including the California Polo Club vs. Arizona’s own Polo Club), this daylong event, which drew 12,000 spectators last year, also plays host to signature events such as the Larsen Live Art Auction, The World’s “Longest” Fashion Show, and the Canine Couture fashion show. BRENTANO STRING QUARTET October 23, 7:30 PM ASU Katzin Concert Hall, Tempe $8–$23 Returning as Quartet in Residence 2015–2016 at Arizona State University’s School of Music, this world-renowned quartet will perform romantic favorites by Schumann, Mendelssohn, and Dvorřák for its first concert.

Sara Langdon

Courtesy of MIM

MASTERWORKS OF SPANISH COLONIAL ART September 5, 2015–March 6, 2016 Phoenix Art Museum $6–$15 This landmark exhibition showcases neverbefore-seen, 18th-century master Spanish Colonial artworks. Except for a Mexican Virgin of Guadalupe painting, all pieces in the exhibit were created in the area that is now Peru, Bolivia, and Ecuador.

QUICKEN LOANS RACE FOR HEROES 500 November 12–15 Phoenix International Raceway Adult $5–$20, various packages For a unique four-day desert experience, camp out with the family at designated spots close to this famous pit; during the day, cheer on racecar drivers.

GAELIC STORM November 20, 7:30 PM Chandler Center for the Arts $40–$70 Combining traditional Irish and Scottish music with original songs, this chart-topping Celtic band takes the stage at the Chandler Center for the Arts for one night only. Come out to hear old favorites, plus tunes from the band’s newest album, Matching Sweaters. ARTFEST OF SCOTTSDALE November 21–22, 10 AM–5 PM Scottsdale Civic Center Plaza Free Over 150 artisans from around the country sell fine arts and crafts, including holiday items. Get a head start on gifts while being entertained with music and food at this 22nd annual event.

Sculptural Calligraphy lighting melds function with flawless form

Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty

beautiful brush strokes

on the market

by Donna Schillinger


Courtesy of Corbett Lighting

alligraphy is a centuries-old, sculptural art form, as elegant as it is functional. Reminiscent of the curvilinear lines left behind by a careful brush stroke, the new Calligraphy collection by Corbett Lighting (corbettlight evokes swirling cursive script flowing across a piece of parchment paper. Calligraphy was developed by Corbett Lighting as an encore to the company’s Spellbound, a modern, decorative LED fixture in a spiral shape. “We wanted to take that same idea of movement and update it,” says President Steve Nadell. “In Calligraphy, we created a soft, striking shape and added some contrast by finishing its form in hand-applied silver leaf with polished stainless steel accents.” Two LEDs illuminate the fixture from the top and bottom and create subtle shadows on the walls—almost like artwork that’s been thoughtfully placed. “Calligraphy’s whimsical, free-form fixture has a fresh look emphasizing today’s most popular finish,” says Becky Goldwasser, sales associate at Valley Light Gallery (, a Scottsdale-based lighting retailer. “It would make a statement in an entry or a dining room. Designers are gravitating to designs like Calligraphy to help them paint with a palette of casual elegance.” “I see Calligraphy fitting in a variety of applications, including a warm, earthy, contemporary aesthetic,” Nadell agrees. “The tone of the silver leaf also makes the fixture neutral, and it can look warm or cool depending on the color palette in the space.”

“We believe in a design-first approach: We sketch what we set out to create, and we find the best way to construct it,” says Steve Nadell of Calligraphy’s two-light pendant (left) and sconce (top).

Bill Tull

masterpiece This adobe-style Pueblo home is an Arizona classic, graced with the Territorial and Santa Fe styling its creator and former owner, world-renowned architect and artist Bill Tull, was famous for. Tucked away on an acre in Paradise Valley, the home features sculptural walls, a colorful Santa Fe–style chef’s kitchen, and cool flagstone flooring. Other details of this four-bedroom home include hand-hewn wood doors, deeply recessed windows, custom metal accents, hand-plastered walls, and clay roof tiles. No fewer than eight fireplaces of varying shapes can be found throughout the home and in the courtyards, perfect for warming chilly evenings and providing a delightful ambience for reading, visiting, and relaxing. Built on one level for easy access, this architectural gem boasts a pool, beautiful mountain views, and extensive, elegant landscaping. Listing price: $1.75 million Contact: MariaElena Rizzo, Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty, 480-489-1811,

Autumn 2015 Advertisers Architectural Stone Elements..............................................inside back cover Best Home Appliances...........................................................................................7 California Pools & Landscape............................................................................3 Central Arizona Supply...........................................................................................9 Closet Masters...........................................................................................................11 DAGR Design..........................................................................................................13 DrewettWorks............................................................................................1 Elegant Home Expo.............................................................................................46 Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery..............inside front cover Fireplace Door Guy...............................................................................................45 Habitat for Humanity...........................................................................................21 Kaiser Garage Doors & Gates..........................................................................42 Landscaping by André..........................................................................................45 Neoporte Modern Door.....................................................................................29 Premier Lighting....................................................................................back cover Scottsdale Shade & Light.....................................................................................21 Stone Renovations, Inc.........................................................................................17 Terri’s Consign & Design......................................................................................6 Wallbeds “n” More....................................................................................................5 SUCASAMAGAZINE.COM


Su Libro

a colorful past Earlier eras inspire two new books on design and architecture


“Decorating is about feeling free, having fun, rejecting traditional notions about what goes with what . . . and getting a little wild.”—Justina Blakeney 54

S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

Earthy, Folksy, Nomadic, Romantic, and Maximal) that detail each bohemian theme and give instructions on how to emulate each with fabrics, colors, and textures. For readers who, like Blakeney, are creative, each section features DIY projects and an Adopt-an-Idea page which gives advice on how to further spruce up bohemian spaces, many of which include live plants. The Plant-o-Pedia in the back of the book explains plant installations and how to care for them. Looking for your inner wild child? The New Bohemians inspires homeowners to find their free-spirited sides through pages of helpful ideas, tips, and plenty of home décor eye candy.—Danielle Urbina

Courtesy of Abrams New York

The New Bohemians: Cool and Collected Homes, by Justina Blakeney, Abrams Books, hardcover, $24

love of interior design and style started at an early age for Los Angeles–based blogger and designer Justina Blakeney. “My parents weren’t precious about their stuff,” she says. “We were allowed to make design decisions.” Thanks to this artistic freedom, Blakeney was immediately immersed in a world of color and creativity, which paved the way to her successful career of designing and styling homes with an eclectic, bohemian vibe. It all started when she began designing and sewing her own curtains and painting vibrant murals on the walls of her childhood bedroom. “My room was a forever-unfinished canvas, consistently evolving and being layered upon, and always an accurate reflection of me at any specific state of life,” Blakeney writes. Growing up with the ability to constantly change her own environment cultivated a knack for styling homes with lots of personality. After a seven-year stay in Florence, Italy, where she honed her talents and created several unique pieces for the apartments she stayed in, Blakeney returned to the United States and launched her award-winning design blog, While offering design tips and easy-to-follow DIY projects, Blakeney always reminds her followers that creativity should be fun and rewarding but never over-the-top expensive. As a working mom herself, Blakeney loves turning Craigslist and thrift shop finds into interesting, refurbished pieces of home décor. “Decorating is about feeling free, having fun, rejecting traditional notions about what goes with what (especially that everything in a room has to match), and getting a little wild,” she says. Blakeney’s first home design book, The New Bohemians: Cool and Collected Homes, explores 20 different homes across the country that have adopted bohemian style and décor to create a free-spirited ambience. The book is split into six distinct sections (Modern,

there are “examples of every Western architectural style that exists from the past 500 years.” And yet, the largest part of the city was built between 1902 and 1959, the year of the revolution. Art deco and Beaux-Arts architectural styles, with Cuban elements, were popular. Between WWII and the mid-1960s, architecture in Havana was influenced heavily by modernist heavy-hitters such as Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Frank Lloyd Wright, Le Corbusier, and other architects favoring rectilinear cubism. Havana Modern, through gorgeous color photography by Néstor Martí, brings us face to face with those buildings, theaters, hotels, homes, churches, and schools. Some structures, like the art deco Bacardi building (former headquarters of the Bacardi Rum empire) are well preserved and have even been

Havana Modern: 20th-Century Architecture and Interiors, by Michael Connors, Rizzoli New York, hardcover, $65


Néstor Martí

f the current administration is indeed able to restore U.S. diplomatic relations with Cuba, as it hopes, “the land that time forgot” may well soon become “the land the world rediscovered.” And should that plan come to full fruition, author Michael Connors’s stunning coffee table book Havana Modern: 20th-Century Architecture and Interiors is well timed to serve tourists finally able to visit Cuba as an introduction to the buildings and architecture of that island nation. The author notes that in the capital of Havana,

Between WWII and the mid-1960s, architecture in Havana was influenced heavily by modernist heavy-hitters such as Mies van der Rohe, Wright, and Le Corbusier. renovated. Others, such as the former Garatti’s School of Ballet and Roberto Gottardi’s School of Dramatic Arts—dramatic examples of Cuban expressionist architecture—lie in ruins. It is interesting—perhaps fitting—that just as the United States is poised to reestablish relations with Cuba, whose development was essentially put on hold in 1959, a renewed passion for midcentury modern everything is currently sweeping the world. Finding and restoring authentic homes, buildings, furniture, and art from the 1940s through the late 1960s has become an international obsession; Americans happily travel to Europe, Denmark, and Australia to find original examples of the era. Havana is about to become the next big destination for modern architecture and design, and Havana Modern is like a sensuous, colorful travel brochure—a glimpse into Cuba’s architecturally rich history and its time capsule of modernism. Heretofore visited by only a few, someday—perhaps very soon—its beauty and its forgotten architecture will be enjoyed and appreciated by many.—Amy Gross SUCASAMAGAZINE.COM



lazy river

Chris Corrie

Although it starts as a freshwater stream at the Gila River, the Salt River earns its name when it flows into the Salt River Tributary and comes into contact with the salt cedar tree, also called the tamarisk or tamarix tree. From its inception point in White Mountain, Arizona, at the confluence of the White and Black Rivers, it winds its way west and southwest about 200 miles into Mesa, Scottsdale, and Phoenix, flowing through the Salt River Indian Reservation along the way. Its shallow waters, such as those found at one of Salt River Tubing’s two drop-off points on North Bush Highway, are idea for fishing, wading, rafting, and tubing. On a lazy afternoon, you might float by the majestic Bulldog Cliffs as you wend your way down the Salt River’s mostly quiet waters.—Amy Gross


S U C A S A A u t u m n 2015

Architectural Stone Elements

Largest Inventory of Hand-Carved Cantera and Limestone Products WE SPECIALIZE IN CUSTOM ORDERS

Architectural Stone Elements is proud to offer wholesale prices to the public.

Cantera – Plain $1750

Limestone – Plain $2995

Limestone – Ornamented $3360

Fireplaces up to: 84” wide x 60” high *Sales tax does apply. Installation not included. Hurry while selection is best! Offer ends November 30, 2015.

Fireplaces, Range Hoods, Door & Window Surrounds, Columns, Molding, Fountains, Pottery, and much more

Open: Monday through Saturday, 8am–5pm

17606 N 32nd St, Phoenix, AZ 85032 | 480-492-9355

Exclusively Illuminating

your life

Winter Solstice Nickel Chandelier


premier lighting

866.907.2669 tucson

northside lighting

Profile for Bella Media Group

Su Casa Phoenix Autumn 2015 Digital Edition  

Su Casa Phoenix Autumn 2015 Digital Edition  

Profile for santafean