Archive for the ‘Featured’ Category

RadiatePHX: Get Connected and Be Inspired

Thursday, August 14th, 2014

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Looking to expand your network and get involved in the community? With over four years experience connecting people to the Core, RadiatePHX is just the place.

The monthly networking takes place Tuesday, Aug. 26 with more people to meet and topics — including Downtown developments and Super Bowl Central — to discuss than ever before. And who knows… you may be the next director or executive of an organization contributing to a Greater Downtown.

Historically, the event has been an inviting space for people to connect with people and local businesses in the Downtown community, said Leslie Lindo, who is now executive director of Project Rising Phoenix, an organization that promotes urban infill projects.

“(RadiatePHX) is how I initially became connected to the downtown community,” she said. “It really made me feel welcome and a part of a strong community — an active community. It inspired me to be engaged.”

And Lindo isn’t the only one. Jennifer Boucek, director of Preserve Phoenix, also credits RadiatePHX for introducing her to the Downtown community.

“The best part (about RadiatePHX) was meeting different people and the format was very informal… and interactive,” Boucek said. “It wasn’t your typical networking mixer where you were on your own. It was an event where you interacted with a group of people and talked about different issues that were going on downtown.”

Lindo and Boucek’s experiences aren’t isolated. RadiatePHX is an informal way to connect with fellow business people, community and civic leaders, and urban advocates — all whilst enjoying complimentary bites and bar.

Hosted by Downtown Phoenix Inc., and Downtown Phoenix Journal, RadiatePHX kicks off on Tuesday, August 26 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. inside the Virginia G. Piper Auditorium at the University of Arizona College of Medicine Downtown Campus. RSVP on Facebook.

Downtown Living: Summit at Copper Square

Thursday, August 7th, 2014

intsummitLike so many other developments in the area, Summit at Copper Square was hit hard by the economic downturn of the last decade. Built in 2007, the building was approximately 50 percent sold when the initial developer walked away and new investors decided to lease the remaining homes.

Now seven years later, the building is transitioning over to more owners than renters. This says a lot about the current real estate market in Downtown Phoenix and bodes well for the future, according to Jeff Devorkin, broker at iGo Urban Realty.

“The history of Downtown Phoenix is being written right now,” said Devorkin. “The future is super bright and we’re just beginning.”

The second tallest residential tower in Downtown Phoenix, Summit at Copper Square offers 22-stories of magnificent views, luxurious finishes like granite counter tops and hardwood floors, and a fifth floor infinity pool and athletic center overlooking Chase Field.

But according to Devorkin, these condos aren’t just for sports fans.

“I think the urban lifestyle is a tad bit newer to this area,” said Devorkin. “But when people spend some time down here, they get it.”

The convenience of living, working and playing in the same area is really what sells these homes and starting at $172, 000, the upscale urban lifestyle is pretty accessible too.

Get a Sneak Peek of the New Downtown Directory and Dining Guide

Thursday, July 31st, 2014

Directory_Fall2014

Think it’s just a new directory? Think again. The 2014 July-December Downtown Directory and Dining Guide depicts a new Downtown—a Greater Downtown.

With a local artist-designed cover, local photography, walking tours, and more businesses than ever, this issue of the directory and dining guide portrays Downtown in a new light and boasts a handful of firsts for our bi-annual publication.

The cover represents what Downtown Phoenix has become, which is a place where people not only work but live, shop and play. Gone are the “nine-to-fivers,” and in their place are residents working to build a strong, creative and diverse community.

Artist Justin Queal, whose work you may have seen inside Squid Ink Sushi, has celebrated and highlighted the Phoenix Public Market grounds in a familiar way. The vendors, shoppers and families have gathered in what’s — to the majority of us — a Saturday ritual, visiting the Saturday open-air market to grab breakfast from a food truck or the Café, pick up the week’s groceries or support a local artisan.

Previous covers have highlighted the businesses in the Core, but those are only a piece of the story. Our new cover celebrates the community — and what better place to embody it than the market, which represents the growth of our city and the direction in which it’s moving.

Reflective of the changing perimeters of Downtown, for the first time the Directory and Dining Guide includes businesses and restaurants in the Greater Downtown area, expanding north to Coronado Road, south to Lincoln Street and west to 7th Avenue, for a total of 125 additional businesses.

The Directory also includes the images from three local photographers, including Jim Louvau, Andrew Pielage and Gabriel Radley. Whether you’re a Downtown expert or new to town, peruse the new Directory and Dining Guide here to see photos, stories, tours and more.

Phoenix DinoCon: A gathering 65 million years in the making

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

juliaAfter attending numerous fan conventions like Comicon with her family, Julia Zolondz, co-creator of Phoenix DinoCon, searched nationwide for a dinosaur-themed convention to attend with her loved ones (Bobby Tyning and Patty, Carl and Trinidad Jimenez.)

“There’s no single event that’s dedicated to being a dinosaur dork,” said Zolondz.

This was true. Dinosaur conventions do exist, but are primarily focused on exploring the natural history of these colossal creatures, rather than the fictitious portrayals found in mass media.

In discovering this terrible void, an idea hatched. Why not create an annual party celebrating pop-culture dinosaurs and kaiju – their Japanese kin?

Despite some initial skepticism by her family, Zolondz booked a venue and started planning. When she says she’ll do something, she actually makes it happen. Especially when it involves something awesome, like creating a dinosaur convention.

conventionThe inaugural event – held in Scottsdale in 2013 – proved successful. Not only did people show up, but the fan base was highly engaged and enthusiastic, with lots of great ideas to contribute.

Based on audience feedback and a new sense of direction, Phoenix DinoCon moved to Downtown Phoenix and is bigger, better and more much more interactive in 2014. There’s also beer and wine.

“It’s really important that people’s voices are heard and the community is involved,” said Zolondz.

One of the best aspects of creating this event, according to Zolondz, is involving local artists, vendors and organizations. As a co-creator, she’s dedicated to supporting independent businesses and artists. Especially when they can all come together around a great common goal – one that celebrates the way dinosaurs capture the human imagination and foster creativity.

The event takes place from 3p.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday, August 2 at the Phoenix Center for the Arts. Registration begins at 2:30 p.m. and the Velociraptor Vendor Room opens at 3:30 p.m. Online tickets are sold out but more will be made available at the door for $5 each as space allows. Visit the website to see the full schedule and list of panels.

*Photos courtesy of NBMA Photography, Phoenix DinoCon 2013.

Downtown Phoenix Welcomes WNBA All-Stars

Thursday, July 17th, 2014

fanfestFor the second time in history, the Phoenix Mercury and City of Phoenix welcome the WNBA All-Stars, all the best players of the Eastern and Western Conferences, coming together Saturday, July 19 for an exhibition game at US Airways Center.

It’s a big day for the Mercury, with both Diana Taurasi and Brittney Griner voted All-Star starters by WNBA fans, and Candice Dupree selected as a reserve. With three Mercury players represented, in addition to the national recognition of hosting the game, it’s a huge win for Downtown Phoenix.

Under the national spotlight, athletes and visitors from around the country will see a very different city than in 2000, when Phoenix last hosted the All-Star game.

Fourteen years ago, US Airways Center was still America West Arena, Comerica Theatre didn’t exist yet and ASU Downtown was a mere glimmer on the horizon. Just to paint a picture of the changes, the year 2000 marked completion of the Collier Center, establishment of Roosevelt Row and opening of the new federal court building, just to name a few.

Today, Downtown’s immense growth can be seen in the vibrant music and entertainment scene, gorgeous new residential properties and expansive commercial developments. More than ever, it’s a nationally recognized destination, and one that every spectator attending Friday’s Fan Fest and Saturday’s game is bolstering by supporting Downtown events.

So as the Mercury ride their wave of success, reflecting on two championship titles and working toward a third this season (Phoenix currently holds the best record in the WNBA), residents and visitors should reflect upon the triumphs of Downtown Phoenix as a whole, and how far it has come.

Go Mercury!

Boost Mobile WNBA All-Star 2014 Schedule:

Friday, July 18:

WNBA Cares Basketball Clinic: The All-Stars host a basketball clinic for 65 Boys and Girls Club youth from around the Valley. Open to media only. Located at US Airways Center main court 9:30 a.m.

East and West All-Star Open Practices: Fans of all ages get a sneak peek of the All-Stars as they prepare for the big game. This event is free of charge and open to the public 3-5 p.m.

All-Star Fan Fest: Enjoy Mercury and Suns entertainers, performances by local bands and special giveaways throughout the evening. Fan Fest features family-friendly activities such as bounce houses, basketball hoops and Flow Rider outdoor surfing machine. The event is free and open to the public.

Saturday, July 19:

Boost Mobile WNBA All-Star 2014: Watch the world’s greatest female basketball players on one court, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting All-Stars and Stripes charity for military heroes and their families.  Individual tickets $20, US Airways Center. The game starts at 12:30 p.m.

Shade Trees to Plant New Roots in Downtown Phoenix

Thursday, July 10th, 2014

ASU Construction Site_2 While the construction crew was busy preparing to break ground on the new ASU Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, we were brainstorming—finding new places for 116 trees that surround the site plan on First Street between Taylor and Polk streets.

In an effort to both save mature trees as well as provide more shade and beauty to other areas of the Downtown core, the Downtown Phoenix Partnership — in collaboration with ASU, DPR Construction and the City of Phoenix — will save dozens of these trees, placing them in new homes around the city. Forty-three trees have been boxed and moved to the SPACE_BETWEEN—the vacant lot activation project on First Street that’s scheduled to debut this fall—where they await the cooler planting season.

Once weather permits, many of the trees will be transplanted to vacant tree wells along Adams Street between Second Street and Second Avenue. The remaining trees will be used for the SPACE_BETWEEN activation project; replace existing Palo Brea trees along Adams Street, which don’t fare well in tree wells and have fragile branches that often break and cause property damage; and be placed in empty tree wells near the former Matador building.

Additionally, DPR Construction plans to save 32 Palo Verde and Mulga varieties that line Taylor and Polk streets, leaving them in place as part of the finished project.

These trees, each of which would cost between $1,000 and $2,000 to buy new, have had three years to mature—growing and providing shade to passerby. And though it may seem of nominal importance, shade is a simple yet essential feature of a pedestrian- and bicyclist-friendly street.

And if we’re to ever to become one of America’s most walkable cities as was recently suggested by Time Magazine — then shade as well as public transportation, urban development, residential amenities and more — must be a top priority in the coming years.

Celebrate Independence Day By Supporting Independent Businesses

Wednesday, July 2nd, 2014

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In honor of Independence Day, explore artisan crafts, eat gourmet food and pamper your mind and body, all while supporting amazing independent businesses. What could be more patriotic?

This week through Sunday, hundreds of businesses around the state are offering a 20 percent discount in honor of “National Independents Week,” an initiative to support local and independent traders.

Lucky for us, Downtown Phoenix is brimming with great local shops, enough to keep us busy for an entire day from dawn until dusk.

So download a Golden Coupon from Local First Arizona and follow this daily guide to “Shopping Local Downtown.”

asideofheartEat breakfast at Aside of Heart

Start your day off right with a delicious acai bowl and tropical smoothie packed with spirulina. Located in the heart of the Roosevelt Row Art District, this restaurant and gallery boasts locally roasted coffee beans, locally sourced food (when available), and a healthy plant-based menu. According to Amanda Langham, co-owner of Aside of Heart, it’s an unpretentious vegan eatery that promotes healthy living in a creative environment.

earringsBuy at pair of handcrafted earrings at MADE Art Boutique

MADE carries numerous one-of-a-kind items including jewelry, pottery, books and magazines. Working behind the cash register, you just might find one of the artists like Alex Ozers, jewelry designer and owner of From The Reliquary. Laughing, he says there are probably artists working in every shop and restaurant along Roosevelt Row. In fact, that’s one of the cool things about frequenting independent businesses in this area. You never know when you’ll run into the owner, designer or chef working behind the counter.

tammiecoeDevour a slice of cake at Tammie Coe Cakes

Two words: Ooey Gooey. This signature Tammie Coe recipe combines chocolate fudge cake with super decadent butter cream frosting. Put some sprinkles on top and it’s the recipe for happiness. In addition to treats, Tammie Coe offers breakfast, lunch and premier baked breads at the newly remodeled Roosevelt location.

sandwichTake a lunch break at Duck and Decanter

No one understands the importance of shopping local more than Jolynn Reisma, general manager of Duck and Decanter. Her family has been running the downtown breakfast and lunch eatery for 42 years. Try one their famous albacore tuna sandwiches, made with high-quality tuna and water chestnuts, in addition to their wonderful selection of specialty teas and coffees. Your business supports four generations of sandwich artisans.

Salon RO5 Master Logo BlkGet a makeover at SALON RO5

Creating a perfectly executed hairstyle is not only difficult, it’s nearly impossible. Fortunately the team of expert stylists at SALON RO5 understands the latest color, cutting and styling techniques. Combined with the best products, you will leave looking and feeling better than ever.

coastersPick up a pack of desert-scene coasters at Hazel and Violet

For all of your commercial and custom letterpress printing needs, Nancy Hill and Beverly Wolfe, co-owners of Hazel and Violet, print using tree-free recycled papers on vintage presses. This centuries-old method creates a clean distinctive look you just can’t find anywhere else. Besides making beautiful cards, invitations and stationery, Hill and Wolfe are dedicated to operating in an environmentally responsible way.

bunky2Buy an AZ Love shirt at Bunky Boutique

Bunky Boutique, lovingly named for Owner Rachel Malloy’s grandmother, is known for its signature “AZ Love” line of shirts and clothing. Building a sense of culture and identity around the community you love is what this clothing line embodies, and according to Malloy, shopping locally also fosters a sense of community. It shows you care about the place you live and the people in it.

CalamariwebEnjoy happy hour at District American Kitchen and Wine Bar

A great place to unwind after work, listen to a local DJ, eat half-priced appetizers and sip $5 glasses of wine. Located in the heart of Downtown inside the Sheraton Phoenix Downtown Hotel, District features upscale comfort food using sustainably farmed produce and fresh herbs from the hotel’s third-floor garden. It’s a welcome break from the mundane.

artmuseum3Peruse the collection of Hollywood costumes at the Phoenix Art Museum

This fascinating exhibition explores costume design throughout history as an essential component of cinematic storytelling. There’s a lot that goes into each design, and it’s that complex process that helps create film characters like Darth Vader and Austin Powers. While you’re there, stop by the Museum Store and pick up a Superman apron or classic movie coffee, 20 percent off with a Golden Coupon.

blissdrinkNosh on a late dinner at Bliss reBAR

Indulge in the “Red Berry Rapture,” or another signature cocktail less than 110 calories. You can make up for lost calories by ordering the famous mac and cheese, even late-night, since the kitchen is open until close every day. The decor gives the restaurant a posh, trendy feel, but it’s definitely a family-friendly atmosphere, according to Rudy Redondo, longtime bartender at Bliss. He says it’s a casual place where the staff can just be themselves and the customers love that energy.

Speakeasy Popping Up Downtown Thursday

Wednesday, June 25th, 2014

Screen Shot 2014-06-25 at 10.39.32 AMWalking past the sleek facade of the Renaissance Phoenix Downtown Hotel, it’s difficult to imagine what it looked like in 1896 as the Hotel Adams. Or what the rest of downtown looked like during the Wild West, for that matter. Discovering the rich and somewhat mysterious history of the Renaissance is precisely what organizers of Pop-up Speakeasy – a return to Cattleman’s Bar – would like people to do. It’s about enjoying great music, cocktails and a little slice of Phoenix history.

On Thursday, June 26 from 6-9 p.m., the Goldwater Room at the Renaissance will be transformed into a 1920s Prohibition-era speakeasy, complete with jazz music, classic hors d’oeuvres and history lesson by Marshall Shore, the “hip historian.”

image002According to Shore, the 20s were a vibrant time for Arizona and especially for the legendary Hotel Adams. As one of the most sophisticated and glamorous hotels of the time, Hollywood stars, lawmakers and stockyard owners lined the stools at Cattleman’s Bar, now part of the Goldwater Room. It was the place to be for movers and shakers, and according to Shore, more Arizona laws were written and passed at Hotel Adams than in the legislature.

At Thursday’s event, delicacies like lobster rolls and beef wellington will be served, while a trained mixologist recants the origins of the Old Walrus and Adams Apple, both famous drinks from Cattleman’s.

Tickets are $30 per person with live entertainment provided by Erin Boheme and the No Vacancy Trio, in addition to Marshall Shore. The event is part of the Renaissance Global Day of Discovery, with 157 signature events happening at hotels around the globe. Please RSVP at 602-333-5103.

*Photo courtesy of the Arizona State Library

Phoenix Public Market Cafe One-Year Celebration is Tonight, June 18

Wednesday, June 18th, 2014

As iconic as the glowing Phoenix Public Market sign—in just one year the Phoenix Public Market Café has become a Downtown staple and hub for community events and gatherings.

Public Market Cafe

Combine the Café with the already popular open-air markets, and the corner of Central Avenue and McKinley Street becomes emblematic of Downtown’s transition into the place where people not only work and play but live.

Visit the Public Market grounds on any given day during the week or during open-air markets on Wednesdays and Saturdays, and you’ll see it’s a dynamic space where you can pick up groceries, run into neighbors and friends, or meet new people over a local brew.

And though the sentiment is bittersweet—as happy as we were to see the Café open in 2013, we were just as sad to lose the Urban Grocery and Wine Bar the year before—the success of the Café and open-air markets is something worth celebrating. And they’re doing just that tonight, Wednesday, June 18.

Join them for a summer BBQ under the misters and stars with live music by The Henry Co., local vendors, corn hole, and a beer garden by Four Peaks Brewery from 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

*Photo courtesy of Phoenix Public Market Café

Where To Watch the World Cup

Wednesday, June 11th, 2014

It happens every four years and now the FIFA World Cup will be decided during four weeks of heart-pounding action.

Where will you watch every corner kick, header and goal? Downtown Phoenix has the perfect pitch for you and your soccer hooligan friends.

The Rose & Crown Pub

740080_10152022222345633_8132675889474553105_oThe Rose & Crown Pub at Heritage & Science Park has been working tirelessly to create the ideal setting for fans to watch all the World Cup matches, even erecting a covered TV stadium with two 80-inch screens and misters to accommodate large (and loud) groups.  There’s also a Caipirinha (Brazil’s national cocktail) bar and trailer offering three additional screens. Raffle prizes include trips to Las Vegas, Diamondbacks tickets, jerseys and official World Cup gear.

Though it’s preferred that you support Team USA or England, all allegiances are welcome. And while you’re glued to the many screens, you can sip specially priced Oskar Blues beers including Old Chub, Mama’s Little Yella Pils and Dale’s Pale Ale ($4), plus the deliciously potent G’Knight Imperial Red ($4.50).

Film Bar

Like big screens? Enjoy Team USA matches (first up, Ghana on Monday, June 17) on Film Bar’s projection screen for free. Members of La Furia Roja 1881, a Phoenix-based soccer support group, get $4 draft beers.

Tilted Kilt

Opening at 8:30 a.m. for 9 a.m. World Cup matches, the Kilt will be serving up a special breakfast menu featuring corned beef hash. The Downtown location is home to the Team USA-supporting American Outlaws soccer club.

Networks Bar & Grill

Networks is World Cup Central for fans of any country. They’re even offering special bar items for all the teams, like the Brazilian Caipirinha and American Apple Pie shot.

Coach’s Corner Grill

For June 17’s big Mexico vs Brazil match Coach’s Corner will be giving away an official Team Mexico jersey and other prizes, plus have the Modelo girls on hand to mingle with fans. Speaking of Modelo, get 24 oz. cans for just $4, Newcastle bottles for $4 and $3 Coors Light drafts.

Majerle’s Sports Grill

Downtown’s longtime sports HQ will be showing all the matches with sound.

The Turf Irish Pub

The Turf will open early to show World Cup matches with sound and offer a rotating list of specials.

Chloe’s Corner

It’s surfing and soccer this summer at Chloe’s. While you’re waiting to take your turn on the FlowRider you can peruse the selection of board shorts and bikinis at the surf shop while taking in the World Cup action.

George and Dragon

Home base for Team USA, England and Mexico, the historic pub and restaurant will be opening an hour before each day’s first match.

The World Cup starts Thursday, June 12 and continues through Sunday, July 13.

USA! USA! USA!