Tag Archives: scottsdale

tires

Scottsdale-based Discount Tire opens 900th store

Scottsdale-based Discount Tire, the world’s largest tire and wheel retailer, opened its 900th store in Cedar Falls, Iowa. The new store is the first Discount Tire location in Cedar Falls.

Providing the lowest prices on tires and wheels, combined with excellent customer service, Discount Tire strives to serve as its customers’ knowledgeable and convenient neighborhood tire retailer. The 7,373 square foot store is located near Prairie Parkway and Viking Road and is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday. The store is closed on Sunday.

“Discount Tire is proud to be a part of this growing community, providing our customers a needed service for tires in Cedar Falls, Iowa,” said Paul Ribbens, store manager of the new Discount Tire. Ribbens has been with the company for eight years.

The new store in Cedar Falls will operate with eight employees, four of which are new jobs in the community. Discount Tire is committed to promoting from within and is always looking for qualified individuals to join them in their exceptional growth.

“As we continue our expansion in the Heartland region our main focus is seeking opportunities to serve communities like Cedar Falls,” said Bill Wendell, regional vice president for Discount Tire. “With winter upon us, it is more important than ever to ensure the Cedar Falls community has a reliable tire retailer and tire expert to provide education on the basics of tire safety.”

The tire retailer started 54 years ago when founder Bruce T. Halle had six tires, a portable air tank and a lot of determination. Day by day, tire by tire, this one-man operation slowly grew into what is now, one of the most recognized names in the industry. Today, Discount Tire operates in 28 states.

Discount Tire sells a wide selection of leading tire brands such as Michelin, Goodyear, Bridgestone, Yokohama, Kumho, BFGoodrich, Pirelli, Falken and GT Radial along with Discount Tire exclusive brands such as Arizonian, Road Hugger, Pathfinder and MB Wheels. Discount Tire also offers a variety of custom wheel brands including Liquid Metal, American Outlaw, Vision Wheel, Level 8, Voxx, TSW, Konig, Drag and many others.

revel

Revel Systems iPad POS expands into Scottsdale

Revel Systems, the world’s leading iPad Point of Sale platform, today announced it has expanded operations into Arizona through a new Scottsdale office. The company will create 160 new jobs during the next three years to drive its global sales growth. Revel’s Vice President of Sales, Bobby Marhamat will devote resources to create jobs and extend the local footprint in the Greater Phoenix market. Marhamat has been with Revel Systems iPad POS since June of 2014 and has successfully grown sales teams and business initiatives at companies such as Verizon Wireless and Sprint.

“Revel is building a world-class sales team here in Scottsdale, and we cannot wait to get started,” said Marhamat. “Thousands of food service and retail franchise operators and small-to-medium business owners worldwide depend on Revel’s POS platform to help grow their business. We expect 2015 will bring further interest and expansion in our offering and are excited to leverage Arizona’s vibrant talent pool to extend that momentum.”

“We’re excited to welcome Revel Systems to Arizona,” said Governor Doug Ducey. “Their decision to expand in Scottsdale is a strong testament to the pro-business climate, booming corporate base and highly-skilled workforce that have made the East Valley one of the most dynamic and fastest-growing areas in the country. I am committed to ensuring that great companies like Revel continue to look to Arizona as the premiere place to bring their business.”

“We thank Revel Systems for selecting Arizona to expand, and are excited to see its new Scottsdale operation, and innovative POS technology solutions for business, advance the growth of other entrepreneurs across globe,” said Sandra Watson, President and CEO, Arizona Commerce Authority. “Our state’s strategic Southwest location, proximity to key regional growth markets, and competitive cost of doing business continue to provide an attractive platform for today’s leading companies to thrive and achieve their corporate success.”

This Arizona expansion news follows Revel’s announcement in November 2014 where it secured $100 million in Series C funding to strengthen support and operations in order to meet rapidly growing demand and sales for its iPad POS solution.  Additionally, last month Revel opened a UK sales and operations center in Belfast, Northern Ireland, and an IT division in Lithuania.

The Revel iPad POS platform includes complete front-end order entry, POS system and payment processing, back-end personnel scheduling, time clock and payroll, inventory management, comprehensive product/menu management and advanced reporting to successfully measure and optimize business performance.

“We are thrilled to continue Revel’s significant growth with our first office in Arizona,” said Lisa Falzone, CEO and co-founder of Revel. “Our ultimate goal is to empower business owners to start and grow their own businesses, making their lives easier along the way. As we continue to expand Revel’s global reach, scaling a talented team of salespeople will be critical to Revel’s continued success.”

Revel’s new office will be located in the Scottsdale Innovation Center and is officially open for business January 12, 2015. Candidates interested in positions at the new location can contact Revel at jobs@revelsystems.com.

Rayndon Law Group joins Clark Hill Phoenix

The attorneys and staff of Scottsdale-based Rayndon Law Group PLC have joined Clark Hill PLC effective January 1, 2015, Clark Hill Phoenix Managing Member Darrell Davis announced today.

“This is a great opportunity for our firm to broaden our tax and estate planning practice and the range of services we can offer the local market,” Davis said.

Darra Lynn Rayndon has over 30 years of practice experience and is certified as a tax specialist by the Arizona Bar. Her work includes tax planning, business entity formation and representation, including corporations, partnerships, limited liability companies, and other businesses, estate and wealth succession planning, asset protection, exempt private offerings, and real estate matters. She is also a Certified Fiduciary through the Arizona Supreme Court and serves as trustee and in other fiduciary capacities when called upon. She is Martindale-Hubbell AV rated.

In addition to Rayndon, who joins as a Member, attorneys Michelle Margolies Tran and Ely W. Sluder have become part of the Clark Hill team.

Tran’s practice is focused in the areas of estate and tax planning for individuals, families, and businesses.  She also provides legal services in business formation and transfers, trust administration, and probate.  She is a member of the American Bar Association’s Section on Taxation, the State Bar of Arizona Association’s Tax Section, and several other professional organizations.  She received her undergraduate degree from the University of California, San Diego.

Sluder is Of Counsel focuses his practice on business, contract, real estate and intellectual property law.  He typically handles client issues such as mergers and acquisitions, asset sales and purchases, business entity formations, commercial leases and general contract drafting and review. Sluder is also a Military veteran, having served as a Combat Medic in the US Army from 1992-1995.

More information on these attorneys and their practices can be found by visiting Clark Hill online at clarkhill.com.

pink ribbon

Scottsdale welcomes first co-working space

DeskHub, Scottsdale’s newest home for entrepreneurs, is celebrating its grand opening with a ribbon cutting to be attended by Scottsdale Mayor W.J. “Jim” Lane.
The event, which is expected to draw 300 of Scottsdale’s most prominent business people, officially opened the city’s first co-working space on Jan. 15 at 5 p.m. at 4900 North Scottsdale Road, STE 4500.
“Scottsdale is excited to be home to this innovative entrepreneurial space,” said Scottsdale Mayor W.J. “Jim” Lane.  “We appreciate the private sector investment in providing for and fostering the collaborative spirit in our business community.”
DeskHub is a flexible office space for entrepreneurs looking for a collaborative work environment and a great place to grow their business in the presence of other like-minded companies. The new space is more than 17,000 square feet, featuring multiple meeting rooms and collaborative spaces, as well as desks and offices that can accommodate 150 people. The DeskHub space will be a best in class facility for entrepreneurs throughout the region.
“We are excited to have the Mayor Lane join us as we officially open our new co-working and collaborative space in Downtown Scottsdale,” says Founder and CEO Jay Chernikoff.
Administration Officials - Hiring Quotas

Thirsty Lion Scottsdale is looking to hire

Thirsty Lion Gastropub & Grill is excited about the opening of its second Arizona location at Scottsdale Fashion Square, following the success of their first valley location that opened in the Valley, at Tempe Marketplace, in 2011. The gastropub will open its doors to the public in February of 2015 and will feature 8,500 square feet of interior seating, handcrafted food, 24 craft beers on tap, signature cocktails and over 1,500 square feet of prime patio space for enjoying the great weather.
Currently, the gastropub is looking to hire110 people to staff their new location. Seventy-five positions will be for the front of the house and 35 positions will be for the back of the house.
The restaurant is looking for individuals who are passionate and looking for a company that is committed to their guests and employees. Walk-in interviews are taking place Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at a small office building at 7150 East Camelback Rd. Suite 160, on the corner of Camelback and Scottsdale Rd. If you would prefer to email your resume you can send it to Scottsdalecareers@ceghospitality.com. Please include the position for which you are applying for in the subject line.
Economic concepts

ON Semiconductor hosting Financial Analyst Day

ON Semiconductor, driving energy efficient innovations, announced that it will host its Financial Analyst Day in Scottsdale on February 26, 2015, starting at 8:00 a.m. MST. The event will feature presentations on the company’s strategy, financial outlook and performance.

Event Details

Attendance for this event is by invitation only. To request an invitation and details for attending the event, please visit the Investors page of http://www.onsemi.com.

ON Semiconductor will provide a real-time webcast of the event on February 26, 2015 from 8:00 a.m. MST to 12:00 p.m. MST on the Investors page of its website at http://www.onsemi.com. The webcast replay will be available at this site following the live broadcast and will continue to be available for approximately 30 days following the presentation. A copy of the presentation materials will be posted to the Investors page of http://www.onsemi.com following the conclusion of the event.

real estate - expanding to california

ULI Arizona’s 10th annual Trends Day

January 2015 is an important time as Arizona hosts the Pro Bowl, the Phoenix Open, and the Super Bowl – all in one week!

Leveraging this energy, The Urban Land Institute Arizona District Council (ULI) 10th Annual Trends Day Conference will be held on January 28, 2015 at The Phoenician in Scottsdale.

This one-day deep dive into the most current state and national land use and real estate trends focuses on what to expect in the future, where the best opportunities can be found and how these components affect public and private sector partners.

Trends Day brings together more than 25 top industry experts and will feature panel discussions on infill development and redevelopment; Phoenix Open and the Super Bowl; employer and site selection; and land and residential. Additionally, the day will feature quick hit discussions on crowdfunding; retail; capital markets; Tucson; and office and industrial.  New in 2015 is the Trends Debate with two teams exploring the topic of Incentives – Are they Crony Capitalism or Necessary Tools for Promoting and Attaining Strategic Economic Goals?

“The 10th Annual Trends Day is not to be missed,” said Heidi Kimball, ULI Trends Day Chair. “Over the past 10 years, ULI Arizona has built a reputation through Trends Day for assembling the industry’s best at Trends Day to accurately and comprehensively forecast what trends will impact land use patterns and real estate in the coming year.”

In just one day, attendees learn about major trends, hot projects, key players and critical issues shaping real estate development in the future. The event provides  the opportunity to network with thought-leaders and change-agents representing public and private sector perspectives.  Last year more than 900 individuals attended Trends Day.

Heidi Kimball, Senior Vice President, Sunbelt Holdings, and Charley Freericks, President, DMB, and Stan Shafer, Chief Operating Officer, Holualoa Companies, are Trends Day 2015 Co-Chairs.

 

The Phoenician resort is nestled in the Sonoran Desert, with the breathtaking Camelback Mountain its backdrop. Photo: The Phoenician

The Phoenician resort is nestled in the Sonoran Desert, with the breathtaking Camelback Mountain its backdrop. Photo: The Phoenician

IF YOU GO

What: 2015 ULI Arizona Trends Day

When: Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Where: The Phoenician in Scottsdale

Continuing education credits available are 6 AZDRE, 6 AICP and 6 AIA.

For More Information: Arizona.uli.org. Sponsorship packages are available.

The Venue Scottsdale begins huge expansion

The Venue ScottsdaleThe Venue Scottsdale, a premier special event facility in Scottsdale, is currently undergoing a multi-million dollar expansion that will add nearly 6,800 square feet to the existing 29,000-square-foot space, and bring more hospitality jobs to Scottsdale.
“This is the largest investment we have made to the property in the past decade,” says Victor Perillo, Founder and CEO of The Venue Group. “As a company we are at an exciting milestone, expanding our offerings and locations, breaking ground earlier this year on The Venue Las Vegas in the heart of the world-famous Fremont East Entertainment District.”
The Venue Scottsdale is a beautiful backdrop for any setting and the renovated space will be casual yet hip and evoke an old world feel. With urban chic décor and modernistic twists on rustic charm, The Venue Scottsdale will be an eclectic space between industrial and retro-modern style influences.
The expansion of The Venue Scottsdale marks a new era,” says Nick Larez, Vice President and General Manager of The Venue Group. “For the first time in The Venue Scottsdale’s long history, we will be further enhancing the full- service capabilities of our lavish private events, giving brides, event planners and destination management companies even more to consider.”
To properly reflect The Venue Scottsdale’s physical changes and the broadening of The Venue Group’s portfolio of services, the brand is pleased to reveal a new corporate identity, logo and website. This rebranding reveals a new style that is dynamic and sophisticated and represents an array of products and services.
The Venue Scottsdale opened in 2006, after ten years of success operating as the Cajun House. Noticing an untapped opportunity in the Scottsdale area, Perrillo renovated the property into a premier location for special events, meetings, weddings, conferences and live entertainment. Once again, Perrillo’s vision is the driving force behind the current renovation and the expansion into Las Vegas.
SumoMaya_0960

Sumo Maya blends Mexican and Asian cuisines

In an age where we work in hybrid jobs and drive hybrid cars, it’s only fitting that restaurateurs are creating hybrid cuisines.

But just like some blended families battle at the dinner table, blending cuisines can sometimes cause a mealtime eruption. Thankfully, the minds behind Sumo Maya in Scottsdale have done a delicious job deconstructing traditional Mexican and Japanese dishes and re-imagining them to make them their own.

The fact that 33-year-old owner German Osio — who is also the mastermind behind Local Bistro and Central Bistro — has been able to combine an amazing Mexican-Asian fusion menu in an atmosphere that is part party, part bar and part sit-down restaurant that might just be the most hip place to eat and drink in Scottsdale.

The greatest thing about Sumo Maya may be that everything is served tapas style, which gives diners an opportunity to sample a wide variety of dishes and flavors. Each plate is small, so the perfect formula would be to  order about two dishes per person to share with the group.

But on a recent visit, we decided to throw that formula out the window and embrace full-on gluttony … and my belly will be forever grateful for indulging in that deadly sin at Sumo Maya.

Since we tried virtually every dish on the menu, I can truthfully support the statement that everything on the menu brings a heaping helping of deliciousness. But if I have to make some recommendations, here are the five dishes that are must-try menu items:

It would be tough to find a better starter in the Valley than Sumo Maya’s Pomegranate Guacamole  ($11).

The Passionfruit ($10) — which combines Montelobos mezcal, passionfruit, cucumber, fresh lime, and ginger beer — is the perfect blend of sweetness and smokiness without being too fruity.

The dynamic flavors of the Kimchee Fried Rice ($11) is the perfect complement to every other dish on Sumo Maya’s menu.

The Suzuki Roll ($12) — spicy tuna, avocado, masago arare and chipotle aioli — is the quintessential example of how Sumo Maya has created the perfect fusion of Mexican and Asian cuisines.

As we prepared to order, we asked our excellent server what the most popular dish on the menu was and she told us that there are many nights Sumo Maya runs out of the Miso Chilean Sea Bass ($24) and we quickly learned why. Served on skewers and cooked over a wood-burning grill, the miso-marinated sea bass is prepared so exquisitely that each mouth-watering bite is like heaven. This is an absolutely must-try, but arrive early so you don’t miss out.

Sumo Maya does fusion as well as it can be done. The care that the staff puts into the flavors of each dish is astounding. I didn’t even mention Charred Edamame, Korean Beef Tacos or Al Pastor Tacos, which are all amazing. If you’re looking for a unique culinary experience to share with friends or business associates in a fun, colorful and inviting atmosphere, Sumo Maya is well worth the visit.

SumoMaya_0833 Sumo Maya 

Where: 6560 N. Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale

Information: 480-397-9520 or sumomaya.com

Dinner hours: 5-11 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays; 5 p.m.-midnight Fridays and Saturdays; 5-9 p.m. Sundays.

Other hours: Lunch 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Mondays-Fridays; brunch 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays; bar is open until 11 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays and midnight Fridays and Saturdays.

technology

Growing tech firms reflect emerging Arizona business sector

Don Hawley is the quintessential product of Silicon Valley. He went to college at the University of California, Berkeley, became a serial entrepreneur and founded and developed many successful technology companies in the San Francisco Bay area.

So why is he doing business in Arizona?

“Arizona is infinitely more business friendly,” said the founder, chairman and CEO of Scottsdale-based Innovative Green Technologies, which creates environmentally friendly products that reduce emissions and save users money. “Favorable tax rates make it less costly to do business in Arizona compared with California, which is attractive to newer companies that have to watch their pennies. Arizona is also blessed with Arizona State University and the University of Arizona, which supply a constant stream of high-quality young talent, which is a great resource.”

Hawley isn’t alone. The recently expansions of Zenefits and Weebly into the Valley and the emergence of Valley-based WebPT and Infusionsoft as technology powerhouses reflect an exploding techn industry in Phoenix that is transforming the state’s economy.

“The technology ecosystem in Arizona has never been more robust and these recent business attractions are going to become more commonplace,” says Steven G. Zylstra, president and CEO of the Arizona Technology Council. “One of the vital attractions for startups in the Silicon Desert as compared with Silicon Valley is the drastically lower cost of living, especially in the area of housing. The word is getting out about Arizona.”

Valley economic developers are doing more than using lower tax rates and promises of sunshine to convince tech companies to relocate here, the state is building its home-grown success stories. A great example is WebPT, which launched its cloud-based physical therapy software in 2008 and has evolved from startup into one the fastest-growing software company in Arizona, creating more than 200 jobs in Phoenix.

“There are great incentive programs available to businesses looking to grow,” says Brad Jannenga, co-founder, chairman, president and chief technology officer at WebPT. “The Angel Tax Credit program offered by the state is a great opportunity for investors to have peace of mind when backing startups and knowing they can take a tax break when doing so. This was a major win for us when we went out for our Series A round back in 2010. Investors were lining up around the block partly because of the early stage success we had, but also largely because of the Angel Tax Credit.”

It’s the success of emerging companies like WebPT that are driving the robust growth of Arizona’s technology sector, says Barry Broome, president and CEO of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC).

“What we’ve done on the policy side was working with the legislature and governor so they understand that even though the headlines belong to Apple and Intel and companies like that, it’s the hundreds if not thousands of small and medium technologically based enterprises that have the chance to be the next GoDaddy,” Broome says. “Maybe you get lucky and you get a Google or a Microsoft or maybe an Infusionsoft becomes a Microsoft. Having the ability to get those small companies to go to scale and having the economic development programs and policies in place to help them are where we’ve been most helpful.”

Jannenga credits organizations like GPEC for helping the technology sector grow by tirelessly looking at new ways to diversify the economy and working closely with Arizona’s universities to produce the next wave of talent needed to feed the workforce demands of the technology industry.

But Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton put it simply: “WebPT is a game-changer, not only in terms of showing the growth in the tech sector in Phoenix, but growth in the warehouse district in downtown Phoenix.”

Experts say Arizona has actually done a number of things well to build a business environment that fosters innovation and an entrepreneurial spirit.

“The state has emphasized economic development through support of key economic development groups like the Arizona Commerce Authority and GPEC,” says Jacque Westling, partner at Quarles & Brady in Phoenix. “(Arizona) has created and maintained some key tax incentives, such as the Refundable Research and Development Credit and the Angel Investment Tax Credit Program, promoted tech transfer from the universities and supported emerging areas of strength such as biotechnology, data centers, energy and other areas.”

Zylstra says having facilities with ready-to-go infrastructure in desirable hot spots such as downtown Phoenix and downtown Scottsdale has been a major part in attracting technology companies to the Valley.
“Knowledge workers like the type of amenities available in these locations,” he says. “When you add Arizona’s ample workforce, low taxes and low cost of doing business, the foundation is very strong.”

Jannenga says the state’s deep awareness of the emerging technology sector and what it means to our state’s economic future has been helpful to WebPT and other early stage companies.

“I think when people began to recognize that we couldn’t rely on the traditional engines that had previously fueled our growth — tourism and migration from colder climates chief among them — to provide the type of jobs we need, it caused a basic shift in how progressive leaders thought about the future,” says Don Pierson, CEO of SpotlightSales, which has developed a sales performance optimization tool.

With the foundation for building a successful technology sector in place, Pierson says he has seen tremendous growth in the software industry and expects that growth to continue.

“I think biofuels are really interesting,” he says, “and I’m always amazed by what comes out of the biotech area.”

Greg Head, chief marketing officer at Infusionsoft, agrees with Pierson that Arizona quickly becoming a center for software businesses.

“Right now, there are thousands of entrepreneurs incubating new innovations, hundreds of software business growing and employing more people and several bigger software companies like GoDaddy, LifeLock, Infusionsoft and WebPT that are growing fast,” Head says. “The Arizona software community is growing up quickly.”

Experts agree that diversifying Arizona’s tech sectors will continue to power its growth. Zylstra expects aerospace and defense and semiconductor and electronics to continue to be strong, “but IT, especially software and data centers, healthcare, bioscience and alternative energy will help lead us into the future,” he says.

“We need to have all tech industries thriving in Arizona,” says Mike Auger, CEO and founder of PikFly, a technology-driven same day delivery network for local businesses. “A focus in one area puts us into a corner. Semiconductors have been great for our state, but that is really what we are known for — we need to be known for all types of tech.”

While Arizona’s growth in the technology arena is impressive, the state must tackle one major issue to maintain that positive trajectory.

“I spend more of my time as mayor in economic development recruiting and retention than I do anything else,” Stanton says. “The reality is this: the companies are concerned about workforce development. Do we have the pipeline of employees that they are going to need as their companies grow?”

Jannenga agrees that Arizona needs to invest heavily into all levels of our education system and diversify our skilled workforce.

“The places where we’re falling short is we’re not delivering the engineering talent necessary for the tech sector to really take off,” Broome says. “We need to make a big move on the production of engineers and make a big move on the production of information communication technology people.”
Broome says that big move can come from anywhere from community colleges to higher education to unique specialty certification programs that are putting students through six-month boot camps and producing a qualified workforce. He cites the Maricopa Corporate College as a unique training program that is developing and delivering customized workforces.

“You’re going to see continued movement in creating new educational options and a huge infusion of these intermediate training strategies to build the technology sector,” Broome says.

Creating a viable workforce to feed the needs is of the technology industry is a must to maintain the state’s robust growth and quality of life, experts say.

“We either grow the tech sector of the economy or we will fail,” Broome says. “That’s how important it is. It’s where the wages are. It’s where the high-end people are. It’s the part of the economy that is most sustainable. If you’re not building a tech sector, you’re relying on your current industries to remain relevant and we know from history that just doesn’t happen.”

Broome says the Valley has learned from companies like Motorola and General Motors than mature companies in mature industries contract and fade away, so it forces the business community to continually recycle its economic strategy around new industries.

“From my perspective, you’re looking at a make-it-or-break-it situation,” Broome says. “The reason the economy is so sluggish is because it’s waiting for consumption. It’s waiting for government spending and it’s waiting for retail spending and it’s waiting for construction and home buying. When your economy can only recover on that basis, you’re going to continue to have ebbs and flows and dips and falls. Even a place like San Francisco, which has a very difficult business climate because it’s expensive to the point of being unimaginable, its net year-to-year economic growth is much more robust than Phoenix and the rest of the country because its economy is built around talent, innovation and the high-tech sector. If we do a good job and build that out better, there’s no reason why Phoenix can’t be the most exciting community in the United States.”

technology

WGM Associates hires Gary Williams as CFO

Gary WilliamsWGM Associates, a Scottsdale-based information technology consulting, security and application development firm, has hired Gary Williams to fulfill the newly created role of Chief Financial Officer.

Williams brings extensive executive financial and technology experience to WGM including two decades of finance and operational experience from the world’s largest technology firms as well as significant expertise managing, acquiring and structuring organizations for continued growth.

At WGM, Williams’ primary responsibilities will be to strengthen and broaden the firm’s financial position through strategic analysis of merger and acquisition opportunities while growing WGM’s solid base of technology clientele and service offerings. Expanding relationships with distribution partners and complementing existing service lines of expertise will also be a key focus for Williams.

Most recently, Williams served as Chief Financial Officer for Apothecary Holdings, a Phoenix-based national specialty pharmacy firm (now known as Avella Specialty Pharmacy), where he helped manage and oversee the organization’s exponential growth over five years.

Previously, Williams spent nearly 20 years with Phoenix-based Avnet, Inc. where he held a host of financial and management positions including Vice President of Finance for Avnet Technology Solutions, North America. In addition, Williams spent more than seven years as a Finance Manager for Intel Corporation.

WGM Associates is a local provider of consulting, security, managed IT services and application development for small- and medium-sized businesses. WGM’s leadership team works with clients and businesses to play an integral role in all IT decisions including technology platforms, information governance, regulatory compliance, strategic initiatives, future requirements and budgetary planning.

image001

Russo and Steele celebrates 15th year

Russo and Steele Collector Automobile Auctions will make its return to Scottsdale January 14-18.
Locally-owned and operated in Scottsdale, Russo and Steele is one of the biggest collector automobile based auction event companies in the world.
Kicking off its year long 15th anniversary celebrations, Russo and Steele’s Scottsdale auction will showcase more than 800 collector automobiles on offer and crossing the block. 
WHO:       Russo and Steele
WHAT:    It’s the 15-year anniversary for Russo and Steele Collector Automobile Auction. In addition to the electricity surrounding the more than 800 collector automobiles, spectators will experience their famous coliseum style “Auctions in the Round”. The event will also host Kevin Martin’s Piece of the Past celebrity memorabilia auction.
WHEN:    Wednesday, January 14
                 Gates open at 9:00 a.m. (Preview day)
                 Thursday, January 15
                 Gates open at 9:00 a.m.
                 Auction begins at 12:00 p.m.
                 Friday, January 16
                 Gates open at 9:00 a.m.
                 Auction begins at 12:00 p.m.
                 
                 Saturday, January 17
                 Gates open at 9:00 a.m.
                 Auction begins at 12:00 p.m.
                 Sunday, January 18
                 Gates open at 9:00 a.m.
                 Auction begins at 11:00 a.m.
WHERE:  Russo and Steele Collector Automobile Auction
                 18601 North Scottsdale Road
                 Scottsdale, Arizona
 
For all of the event details, visit www.russoandsteele.com
Copyright: RHG, El Hefe

El Hefe Scottsdale re-opens New Year’s Eve

Riot Hospitality Group (RHG) celebrates the re-opening of El Hefe Super Macho Taqueria in Scottsdale on New Year’s Eve, Wednesday, December 31. The award-winning restaurant and bar concept will re-open to ring in the new year after being closed for four months while undergoing major renovations. The festivities will begin with a ribbon cutting ceremony at 5 p.m. with owners Ryan Hibbert, Mike Troyen and Jon Wright.

El Hefe will be open to the public 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. and then will open for their annual El Hefe “The Morning After” New Year’s Day party at 6 a.m. on Thursday, January 1.

Must be 21 years or older to attend and admission is complementary.

“It’s amazing to be able to celebrate the re-opening of our first restaurant of our brand which changed nightlife across the US from its energetic operational style to family style food service,” said Ryan Hibbert, chief executive officer of Riot Hospitality Group.

The renovations will include a more contemporary and sophisticated look. The restaurant will also feature an all new interior, 90 feet of digital LED walls, completely renovated design interior and exterior, upgraded front entrance, digital menu boards and interactive service.

The first of RHG’s entertainment concept, El Hefe has been delivering high quality food with their from-scratch kitchen, excellent service and quality of product since 2011. Since then they have opened two other El Hefe locations in Chicago and Tempe, in addition to launching a brand new concept Dierks Bentley’s Whiskey Row in Scottsdale.

aimeeRunyon

Aimee Runyon named CEO for notMYkid

Scottsdale-based notMYkid, a nationally focused non-profit organization focused on empowering and educating youth, families and communities with knowledge and courage to identify and prevent negative youth behavior, announced Aimee J. Runyon as its new Chief Executive Officer (CEO).  Runyon has 22 years of experience in nonprofit management, most recently serving as the 1st Executive Director for Assistance League of Phoenix.

“I’m very excited to lead the notMYkid team and expand its well-earned national reputation for effective programing with proven results that inspire kids to make positive choices in difficult situations,” said Aimee Runyon, CEO of notMYkid.  “With prevention at the forefront of all programming rather than intervention, we’ll continue to grow our efforts to reach young people who fight internal battles about what is “right” and “wrong” and to provide them with the knowledge and resources that empower them to make positive choices in difficult situations.”

“Aimee’s leadership skills and non-profit management expertise will help propel notMYkid to even greater success as we continue to expand our mission across the country,” said Debbie Moak, Founder and Board Member of notMYkid.  “With Aimee at the helm, we’re confident that notMYkid will inspire even more kids across the country to make good life decisions and that our efforts will help parents to take a positive, proactive role in helping their kids arrive at those positive choices.”

notMYkid prepares kids to face everyday challenges with courage and confidence, through its unique education models of peer-to-peer education where the organization address the life-changing issues such as drug abuse, alcohol abuse, bullying, unhealthy relationships, body image, depression/self injury, and internet safety.

The challenges kids and families face today are complex and have the potential to devastate lives and derail futures. The average age a kid will first try drugs is 13. Studies indicate that people who reach 21 without engaging in destructive behaviors are likely to never do so, which is why notMYkid passionately educates about current trends, warning signs, and the long-term impact of destructive behaviors. notMYkid believes that proactive prevention on the part of kids, families, and communities is the answer to long-term success.

Born and raised in Phoenix, Runyon most recently she was the 1st Executive Director of Assistance League of Phoenix, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that has been improving the lives of children throughout Phoenix for more than 50 years.  She also served as Vice President at The Community College Foundation in Los Angeles, California before serving as the 1st Executive Director for Matthew’s Crossing Food Bank, located in Chandler, Arizona.

Runyon currently sits on the boards of ONE and Matthew’s Crossing Food Bank and is on the steering committee of AZ Gives Day. She is a past President of the Chandler Non Profit Coalition.

Runyon earned her BA degree in Communications from Arizona State University and a Masters in Business Administration and Masters in Public Administration from Keller Graduate School of Management.  She is also the proud mother of her six-year-old son, Amare.

party

Join Second Story for a New Year’s Eve bash

See what all the buzz is about and ring in the New Year at what’s been called the “Valley’s hottest new Restaurant of the Year,” The Second Story.

Located in Old Town Scottsdale, just above the Gelato Spot, New Year’s revelers at The Second Story will kick-off the festivities New Year’s Eve, Dec. 31st at 6:30 p.m. with a welcome specialty cocktail or a glass of premium wine.

Then take your seat for a show of culinary drama featuring a three-course feast of American Modern cuisine.

The party continues all night long with a late-night Cocktail Party including hors d’oeuvres, and a seafood bar.

Finally cure your sweet tooth with the dessert bar and top it all off with the champagne countdown that begins at midnight, the perfect way to celebrate the New Year.

“We wanted to create the ultimate New Year’s Eve experience by putting together the ideal combination of food, drinks and fun,” said Second Story Owner Tommy Plato.

Adding to the overall experience there will be live band throughout the event.

 

New Biltmore Suite

Arizona Biltmore renovates more than 400 rooms

The Arizona Biltmore, A Waldorf Astoria Resort has launched a multi-million-dollar renovation that will offer guests modern and refined accommodations, while preserving the historic architecture and design that distinguish the grand dame of Phoenix.

The resort is re-mastering guest rooms and suites, meeting spaces, ballrooms, pre-function rooms, spa and salon, as well as the prohibition-era Mystery Room with a sophisticated new look that recalls the seductive style of the resort’s early years.

The renovation is being directed by Santa Barbara-based Smith & Firestone Associates (SFA), a leading international luxury hospitality interior design firm. The visual architects and interior designers of SFA are creating timeless refinement where classic luxury meets modern sanctuary. The redesign will be chic and contemporary, while continuing the original Frank Lloyd Wright style of organically incorporating the natural environment.

“We are thrilled to be completing this extensive renovation in time to celebrate our historic property’s 85th anniversary in 2014,” said Sarah Moran, Marketing and PR Manager for the Arizona Biltmore. “Our new design theme is a modern interpretation of classic elegance, with beautifully re-mastered accommodations and enhanced world-class facilities. The renovation will be done in phases with one self-contained building being completed at a time, which will allow for continuous operation of the resort during the duration of the project.”

The renovation includes the Paradise, Garden, Valley, Cottage and Terrace Court accommodations. A soft color palette of mist, linen and latte will create a light and cheerful ambiance in the guest rooms, juxtaposed with contrasting warm wood colors that emulate the natural tones of the surrounding desert. Specialty glass tops on bureaus in a thick mist color will bring the soothing atmosphere of a desert oasis indoors. Echoing the distinctive use of metals in the original hotel design, bronze and gold metal accents in the guest rooms will evoke a distinguished vintage ambiance.

Scottsdale Stadium, WEB

Scottsdale to host Ariz. United Soccer Club

Arizona United Soccer Club – the state’s only professional soccer team playing in USL PRO – will play in Scottsdale Stadium beginning in April 2015, the club announced today.

“This is the next step in professional soccer’s evolution in Arizona,” Arizona United Soccer Club owner Kyle Eng said. “Our mission is to serve the entire Arizona soccer community, and this move will bring the beautiful game to a wider audience. With Scottsdale Stadium’s proximity to restaurants and nightlife in Downtown Scottsdale, our supporters will enjoy a game day experience that is second to none.”

Winter home of the World Series Champion San Francisco Giants, Scottsdale Stadium has won praise for its intimate sight lines, fan-friendly facilities and central location. The City of Scottsdale partnered with the soccer club.

“The people of Scottsdale love sports, and soccer is definitely among the most popular, Scottsdale Mayor W.J. “Jim” Lane said. “That’s why we are so excited to welcome the Arizona United Soccer Club to Scottsdale Stadium and Downtown Scottsdale. It’s a great venue in a great location, and it will provide a great home field advantage for Arizona’s only professional soccer team. We can’t wait to kick off the season.”

Arizona United Soccer Club played its 2014 USL PRO home schedule at Peoria Sports Complex after Eng bought the club a little more than a month before the season opener. Arizona United Soccer Club averaged about 3,200 fans in 16 home matches, posting a 7- 7-2 record.

“We are grateful to the City of Peoria and the Peoria Sports Complex for their support and hard work in our first season,” said Eng, founder and owner of Peoria-based Arrowhead Advertising. “With their help, we provided a first-class venue for our players, fans and partners.”

In Scottsdale Stadium, the soccer pitch will run north and south, with the north goal in front of the left field wall and the south goal along the first base line.

“We’re looking forward to a long and successful partnership,” Scottsdale Stadium Supervisor Jeff Cesaretti said. “Professional soccer will expose the stadium to a new audience and Scottsdale Stadium will provide a unique experience for soccer fans.”

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New Ownership Renovates Scottsdale Hotel

A critical financing package has led to an upgrade of one of south Scottsdale’s best-known hospitality facilities and will help modernize it to reflect the revitalization of the McDowell Road Corridor.
The Best Western Papago Inn at 7017 East McDowell Road in south Scottsdale has undergone renovations and is now the Magnuson Hotel Papago Inn. The revitalization of the facility comes as the McDowell Road corridor, a nearly 3-mile stretch from Loop 101 to 64th St., is experiencing a resurgence after suffering setbacks over the course of the past couple of decades.
With SkySong, The Arizona State University Scottsdale Innovation Center, auto dealerships being repurposed, and other large projects and investments on tap, the McDowell Road corridor is fast becoming a commerce draw. The renovation and rebranding of the hotel will help add to the new energy and continued revitalization efforts in the area.
The project is being developed by Bret and Patricia Wirta, who recently purchased the property after the previous owners retired. The new owners turned to AVANA Capital to facilitate a loan to purchase and renovate the 50-year-old property.
“We’re thrilled to be able to invest in the McDowell Road corridor and to be able to upgrade this promising hotel property,” said Bret Wirta, one of the owners of the hotel. “We look forward to making this a great destination for business travelers coming to the many new businesses in the area, for long-time clients who have been loyal to the property, and for leisure travelers who want to experience all Scottsdale has to offer.”
Bret and Patricia Wirta also own Quality Inn, Holiday Inn Express and Black Bear Diner in Sequim, Wash. under separate entities. The company has about 100 employees at its operations, including approximately two dozen who are working at the Papago Inn.
“It’s a very unique property in that it’s a boutique hotel like some other hotels, but it has great features like a beautiful courtyard, outdoor pool, mature trees, a bird aviary — it’s a little oasis in the middle of Scottsdale,” Bret Wirta said. “We’re grateful that AVANA Capital helped us with a financing package that not only allowed us to purchase the property, but to have the flexibility to make improvements as well that will make it an even better experience for travelers.”
Founded in 2003, Magnuson Hotels has become the fastest growing hotel chain in history, representing nearly 2,000 United Kingdom and North American hotels with assets in excess of $6.75 billion. A top 10 global hotel chain, Magnuson Hotels has consistently ranked as the #1 Hotel Company of Inc. Magazine’s 5,000 fastest growing private U.S. companies.
The project will bring a revived hotel with 58 rooms and two stories, and the new owners are examining the idea of opening a restaurant as part of the facility. AVANA Capital facilitated the loan for the group of owners.
“It’s great to help improve a key property in the McDowell Road corridor and to help these entrepreneurs provide a better experience for travelers,” said Sanat Patel, Managing Partner of AVANA Capital. “Because we were able to help, an enterprising group of owners will help keep the positive momentum going in this part of south Scottsdale while creating new jobs for the area as well. It is an older property, but we saw a great deal of potential. Renovations such as this create economic growth, which helps improve communities and create jobs for local residents.”
Since 2005, AVANA Capital has funded more than $600 million in loans that led to 9,000-and-counting new jobs created and saved in 30 states, under the United States Small Business Administration Lending Programs.

Sliders

‘Tastings For Two’ menu debuts at TapHouse Kitchen

What’s better than a delicious meal paired with a smooth drink? Join TapHouse Kitchen in Scottsdale for Tastings For Two. You and a guest can share two drinks from the tap, one appetizer and two entrees for $32 a person.

If that doesn’t get your mouth watering wait until you try the Honey Chipotle Glazed Wings or the Juicy Pork Tenderloin—both featured on the tasting menu. Wash it all down with a custom beer flight or with one of the variety of whiskeys on tap. Located at The Hilton Village in Scottsdale, the menu was created by Executive Chef Patrick Karvis.

To learn more about TapHouse Kitchen visit TapHouseKitchen.com or like them on Facebook at facebook.com/TapHouseKitchen.

Tastings For Two Menu:

Whiskey on tap
Makers Mark, Jameson Irish, High West Straight Double Rye

Wine on tap
Acrobat Pinot Gris, Simi Sauvignon Blanc, Diseno Malbec, Garnet Pinot Noir, Niner Red Blend

Craft drafts on tap
Widner Alchemy, Odell IPA, Firestone Double Jack, THK Rotated, Odell Loose Leaf Ale, Santan Devils Ale, Four Peaks Kilt Lifter, Deschutes Black Butte, Grand Canyon Pils, Victory Prima Pils, Lumberyard Red Ale, Kona Longboard, Stella Artois, Stella Cidre, Four Peaks Peach Ale, Papago Orange Blossom, Mudshark Full Moon, Papago Coconut Joe, Habitus Rye IPA

Custom beer flights
Try one of our custom beer flights! Four 4oz samples

Appetizers

Roasted Harrisa Hummus—Grilled oregano bread, local cucumber, feta cheese

TapHouse Sliders—All natural 100% angus beef, quail egg, brioche bun, sauce béarnaise

Charcuterie Board—Assorted cheeses, cured meats, pickled vegetables, beer mustard

THK Wings—Honey chipotle glaze, maytag bleu

TapHouse Salad –A rizona greens, citrus, crow’s dairy feta cheese, local cucumber, candied walnuts, grilled red onion, papago orange blossom vinaigrette

Entrées

Chicken and Dumplings—Chicken, gnocchi, braised carrots, sugar snap peas, roasted corn, white wine mustard sauce

Pork Tenderloin—Parmesan polenta, cola gastrique and razz cherry tomatillo salsa

Fish Fry Everyday—Walleye pike, beer battered, taphouse fries, tartar sauce

Shrimp Pasta Primivera—Angel hair pasta, roasted corn, snap peas, baby portabello, heirloom tomato, parmesan cream sauce.

New boutique brings boho-chic to Scottsdale

5 two 3 opened its doors in November to its first-ever retail store in the heart of bustling Old Town Scottsdale, Ariz. Located at the southwest corner of Goldwater Boulevard and Fifth Avenue.  The boho inspired boutique offers handmade, free-spirited women’s clothing and yoga headbands in a myriad of vibrant prints and comfortable fabrics.

“We’re thrilled to be a part of the buzzing Scottsdale shopping and fashion scene,” said 5 two 3 co-founder Brittany Garcia. “We believe our clothing and accessory line brings something fun and totally different to the community.”

5 two 3 offers everything from stylish sweatpants, faux fur vests and groovy bell bottoms dubbed “peace pants,” to rompers, vintage t-shirts and yoga headbands. Shoppers can expect to see patterns and fabrics change seasonally. “Our brand is unlike anything you’ll see at the mall. You won’t find the girl next to you in yoga wearing anything like it.”

All items are handcrafted in Phoenix using American made fabric sourced from California. In addition, patrons can feel good about their purchase because the local business donates 5.23 percent of proceeds from each item sold to organizations benefiting women entrepreneurs in developing companies who have their own apparel companies.

Garcia and co-founder Karah Eaton founded 5 two 3, named after the May 23 birthday they share, in January 2013 while working together at a yoga studio in Phoenix. The duo launched the brand modestly with a simple line of yoga headbands they sewed by hand with a thread and needle in their apartments. Today, in addition to the newly opened brick and mortar locale, limited quantities of 5 two 3 apparel and yoga headbands can be found at all Kaleidoscope Juice, Madison Improvement Club and True Hot Yoga locations, and at Pepper Boutique.

5 two 3 is located at 6957 E. Fifth Ave. in Scottsdale. The boutique is open Saturdays from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. For more information, call (480) 946-0856 or visit www.5two3.com.

technology

Cox Arizona announces multiple employee promotions

Cox Communications has announced that three Phoenix-area employees, Zabrina Mogro, Scott Martin and Scott Magee Jr., have been promoted and will each be taking on new responsibilities as field supervisors.

With more than a combined 30 years of experience at Cox Arizona, each of the new field supervisors will be responsible for leading a team of Cox field technicians and overseeing their team’s repairs and maintenance of Cox residential services.

Zabrina Mogro has worked for Cox as a Universal Home Technician in field operations since 2007 where she also served as a mentor for other technicians. She served four years in the United States Air Force as an Air Traffic Controller before arriving at Cox. Mogro has been promoted out of Cox’s Tempe location.

Scott Martin began his career at Cox in 2006. During his time with the company, he has progressed and has held the positions of an Expert Technician with Home Security, a mentor to other technicians, and has also served in an interim leadership role. Passionate about development and leadership, he is a 2014 graduate from the Cox Communications Building Blocks Leadership Course and has also been involved in several special projects including the 2008 Super Bowl and Gigablast at Cox. He has been promoted out of Cox’s Scottsdale location.

Scott Magee Jr. started his telecommunications career in 1999 working as a Cox contractor with Western Cable. During his time in Field Operations, he became a three-product expert while also mentoring other technicians and serving in an interim leadership role. He has also been promoted out of Cox’s Scottsdale location.

toys

Plexus Worldwide donates $35,000 to Toys for Tots

Scottsdale-based Plexus Worldwide, a leading direct-marketing weight-loss and health-supplement seller that was recently named No. 8 on the 2014 Inc. 5000 list of fastest growing companies, presented a donation of $35,000 to Toys for Tots and a donation of $40,417 to Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP).

The presentation occurred on December 15 at Plexus Worldwide’s headquarters in Scottsdale.  Sgt. Eric Martinez, Coordinator for Toys for Tots in Maricopa County and Aaron Miranda of Wounded Warrior Project attended the event, and were joined by Plexus Executives including CEO Tarl Robinson and CMO Alec Clark.

“We were overwhelmed by the support of our customers and ambassadors to donate to these worthwhile organizations,” said Tarl Robinson, CEO of Plexus Worldwide.  “As Plexus Worldwide continues our astronomical growth into 2015, we look forward to more opportunities to help worthwhile organizations like Toys for Tots and The Wounded Warrior Project in the years to come.”

“Wounded Warrior Project positively impacts the lives of more than 60,000 injured veterans and their families with programs and services funded by the public and caring companies like Plexus Worldwide,” said Adam Silva, chief development officer for Wounded Warrior Project.  “We’re very thankful to Plexus Worldwide which has donated nearly $100,000 over the past two years to Wounded Warrior Project to help us achieve our vision of fostering the most successful, well-adjusted generation of wounded service members in our nation’s history.”

“We are very pleased to welcome Plexus Worldwide as a national corporate sponsor of the 2014 Marine Toys for Tots Campaign,” said retired Marine Major Bill Grein, vice president of the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation ” With their generous support, we will be able to fulfill the Christmas holiday dreams of thousands of less fortunate children, who otherwise might have been forgotten.”

The donation to Toys for Tots is a direct result of sales made on Cyber Monday, when Plexus customers and ambassadors entered a special code to donate 5% of that day’s sales.  The Wounded Warriors Project donation is a result of a similar special offer on Veterans Day.  Other charities to benefit from Plexus donations during 2014 include breast cancer awareness and research organizations.

Haute Photography - Phoenix Photographer

iStar launches sales of final phase at Sage

Seventy-two new homes hit the market in Downtown Scottsdale when owner iStar Residential hosted a grand opening event for the final phase at Sage, the luxury condominium community located along the Scottsdale waterfront.

The $35 million community is the first ground-up-construction condominium development to deliver new homes in Downtown Scottsdale in seven years. The two, three-story buildings are nearing completion with resident move-in expected in late January.

Following the success of the sold-out first phase, Sage’s final phase will feature 72 two- and three-bedroom condominiums ranging from 1,375 to 1,659 square-feet, with optional den floor plans, and priced from the high $400Ks.

“The demand for this final phase at Sage is significant. We’ve had brokers and buyers calling us nonstop since we started moving dirt more than a year ago, asking when they can sign a contract and move in,” said David Sotolov, senior vice president at iStar Residential. “Brand new homes of this size and quality in the heart of Downtown Scottsdale are extremely rare, so this is a very limited opportunity. There are no other projects like this now or planned for the future. Other projects recently developed or coming onto the market are either apartments or small condos. An opportunity to own a brand new luxury residence in a downtown location like we are offering at Sage may not happen again, and people are taking notice.”

Inside Sages’ homes are top-of-the-line features and finishes, including granite kitchen countertops with decorative tile backsplash and LED under-counter lights, Dacor® professional stainless steel appliances, designer-selected modern wood cabinetry, GROHE® faucets and fixtures, Provenza hardwood floors, well-appointed master bathrooms with Carrera marble countertops, dual sinks and a deep soaking tub, spacious walk-in closets, elegant fireplace with natural stone surround, custom cabinetry and millwork throughout, nine-foot ceilings, dramatic foyer entrances that create an inviting sense of arrival and private terraces or balconies with Camelback Mountain and waterfront views. State-of-the-art technology conveniences include Wi-Fi controlled thermostats, USB charging ports at key outlets, high-speed cable and dual-glazed vinyl windows with efficient, Low-E, energy saving glass.

In recent weeks, iStar Residential has completed a six-figure investment in redesigning and upgrading the community’s resort-like amenities. Amenities include an expansive 3,400-square-foot, two-story private clubhouse with dramatic 30-foot ceilings; a designer-styled and luxurious library lounge with entertaining kitchen, fireplace and 65” flat screen TV; a one-of-a-kind climate controlled subterranean wine cellar;  a lushly landscaped waterfront pool and spa with an outdoor lounge and private cabanas; an open-air grilling area with raised terraces for scenic dining; a fitness studio with SCIFIT and Spirit equipment and a Yoga-stretch a room; Wi-Fi access and USB ports throughout the clubhouse and gated underground resident parking. iStar is also constructing a paved and lighted walking path from Chaparral Road to the southern end of the property line with enhanced, lush landscaping that will connect Sage to the heart of Downtown Scottsdale.

Tucked into a quiet residential neighborhood that lines the waterfront of The Arizona Canal, Sage combines the feel of a suburban lifestyle in an urban location. Upscale yet intimate, Sage’s traditional architecture boasts stone-lined walls and chimneys complemented with architectural niches and dimensions that differentiate one set of homes from the next, creating a picturesque community.

Conveniently located within walking distance of world-class shopping, restaurants, independent art galleries in Old Town Scottsdale, resorts, and golf courses, Sage provides a private and redefined city-living experience that is unmatched by any other residential community in Scottsdale. The first phase of Sage, a collection of 50 condominiums, townhomes and penthouses, sold out in early 2012.

Sage’s grand opening event will be held Saturday, Dec. 6 and Sunday, Dec. 7 from 11am – 6pm.

Buyers can gain access to the Sneak Peek VIP event on Friday, Dec. 5 by getting pre-qualified with Sage’s preferred lenders.

For more information about Sage and to pre-qualify for the VIP Sneak Peek Event, call 480-947-SAGE (7243) or visit www.SageScottsdale.com. Sage is located at 4855 N. Woodmere Fairway in Scottsdale.

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Obsession with social media drives increase in plastic surgery

Snapping selfies and social media have changed life as we know it. Now, it’s changing the cosmetic surgery industry as we know it.

“Social media is causing people to take a close-up look at themselves,” said Pablo Prichard, M.D., senior partner at Advanced Aesthetic Associates and chief of plastic surgery at John C. Lincoln Hospital. “I’ve seen a trend of younger and younger patients over the last five years and a lot of that can be attributed to the impact of social media.”

Prichard said young people who are looking to raise their profile on image-based platforms like Instagram and Snapchat are coming in primarily for rhinoplasty, chin augmentation, lip augmentation and breast augmentation.

“People come in and will manipulate their facial features with smartphone applications and will actually come in with images of how they would like to look,” said Dr. Daniel Shapiro of Shapiro Aesthetic Plastic Surgery and Skin Klinic in Scottsdale.

Shapiro said social media, LinkedIn and dating websites make it difficult to escape viewing a steady stream of images of yourself, which makes it easier to analyze flaws and imperfections. As a result, Shapiro has seen a 15 percent increase in patients because of selfie obsession.

“During the Recession, I saw a lot of people who were laid off and came in to invest in their appearance,” Shapiro said. “Now, people going through horrible divorces see themselves in selfies, see how much older they look and all of a sudden they have to be out there (and want to improve their appearance).”

After cosmetic surgery, Shapiro has seen many patients find significant other “pretty quickly” on sites like match.com and eHarmony. But even with those successes, Shapiro said the public needs to put things into perspective and avoid becoming obsessed with selfies.

“I think the obsession with social media is here to stay,” Shapiro said.  “And I think it’s going to get even more and more popular.”