Tag Archives: Scottsdale Quarter

running

ASICS at Scottsdale Quarter Now Open

Sports performance footwear, apparel and accessories brand ASICS America is expanding its retail footprint this weekend. With the addition of a storefront in the quad area of the Scottsdale Quarter, the retail store will provide runners, athletes and fitness enthusiast of all types with the largest collection of ASICS products. In addition, the ASICS Scottsdale store will feature its unique ASICS Foot ID®, offering customers a free, state-of-the-art, computerized gait analysis resulting in the perfect shoe pairing.

“With its beautiful climate, varied attractions, and vibrate business growth, Scottsdale is the ideal location for our newest Western storefront,” comments Kevin Wulff, ASICS America President and CEO. “As the first ASICS store in Arizona, we’re hoping to motivate the Scottsdale community and surrounding area full of young, active and style-conscious individuals, to better their best with ASICS’ wide variety of high performance athletic footwear, apparel and accessories.”

The new storefront will feature the brand’s 2014 Spring collections of high tech apparel, accessories and footwear including the 20th edition of the award-winning GEL-Kayano®. Beyond providing an exceptional product offering, the store will also look to become a pinnacle in the running and fitness community, hosting various group runs and workouts regularly as well as looking to sponsor other various events in the area that promote health and wellness.

The storefront, located at 15257 N. Scottsdale Road, Suite 140, Scottsdale, Ariz., is set to open on Friday, February 21.

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Valentine's Day Gift Guide 2014

Valentine’s Day — you either love it, hate it or (sometimes) forget it. If you have a special someone (yourself included!) to celebrate this glorious holiday, take a quick stroll through the Scottsdale Quarter. With the help of the Stephanie Ingersoll, who knows the Quarter better than even the most dedicated shopper, Scottsdale Living has compiled a gift guide to the most excessively romantic day of the year.

look one There’s nothing more romantic than a sensual fragrance. If you’ve been dating a long time and your S.O. Knows every word to Seal’s “A Kiss From a Rose,” there’s a good chance this gift will go over well.
Try: Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb Gift Trio, $144.25 or Gucci Guilty Pour Homme Gift Set, $90 from Sephora.
look two Does the Sun have nothing on the warm fuzzies you get when you look at your honey? Help buffer that beautiful shine with these products.
Try: GLAMGLOW Clearing Treatment, $69-$88 or CLARISONIC Mia2 Hollywood Lights Collection, $150 from Sephora.
look three At the heart of a budding relationship is laughter and good times. Plus, you know the saying — the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. These appetite-satisfying gifts are great for a guy (and gal) whose eyes are bigger than their stomach.
Try: Edible bra and panty, $9.99; an XL beer glass that holds four brews, $14; box of chocolates or giant candy bars, $7 to $19.99, from It’s Sugar.
look three Show your better half how well you know them with a gift that aligns with their passions.
Try: Marilyn Monroe gear — $13 to $39.99, from It’s Sugar.
look three Is your beloved a classic? Don’t be afraid to take the classic route of gifting jewelry! For trendy items, Kendra Scott has both of you covered with cufflinks for him and gorgeous jewelry sets for her.
Try: Emerson, Daniel or Loren cufflinks, $44 to $75; Stevie necklace, Marissa earrings or an Erika cuff bracelet, $150, $125, $160, from Kendra Scott Jewelry.
look three If your lady has high-end taste, you may want to check out the LUXE Collection’s offerings.
Try: Baquette Caged Tennis Bracelet in Black Tourmaline, $450; Stone Nest Pendant Necklace in Black Tourmaline, $250; Pave Oval Stud Earrings in Black Tourmaline $195, from LUXE Collection.
Lindsay Lou, WEB

Looks Fit for a Valley Winter, Pt. 3: Lindsay Lou

Wintertime in the Valley is one of the most enjoyable times of the year. There is a reason why the snowbirds flock to Scottsdale, and it may have something to do with the warm temps. Unfortunately, dressing the part seems to be a challenge for many, but thanks to Scottsdale Quarter’s Marketing Director Alison Goodman, we have great tips for looking your best during the winter months. Alison’s sense of style is on point and for the next three weeks she will take us to three different store’s located at my favorite mall to give us examples of outfits that you can use as inspiration to spruce up your wardrobe.

The final weekend for holiday parties before Christmas is approaching quickly and we are winding down our shopping spree. Our go-to and knowledgeable shopping expert has taken us to Free People where she taught us how to incorporate some of our favorite decades fashion styles into our holiday wardrobe as well as introduced us to patterned leggings. Next stop on our shopping spree was to the GAP, where we learned that it’s never too late to wear white after Labor Day and that “gray is the new black.” Our final store is the cute little boutique Lindsay Lou, where Alison will show us some great ideas for looking super chic this holiday season!

look one Lindsay Lou is the perfect place to find that LA-inspired and trendy look and this outfit is no exception. Leather pieces are huge this holiday season and this dress is combining two trends: sheer paneling amidst a luxe fabric. And remember, it’s never a bad idea to update that LBD category in your closet.
look two ‘Tis the season for the sweatshirt! Paired with jeans, pencil skirts and everything in between, this gym-going staple is having its moment. Some great finds come from Wildfox at Lindsay, where the fabrics are soft and the sayings are tongue-in-cheek. There are no rules when it comes to your sweatshirt – rock in anytime and every time.
look three Layer, layer and layer some more – this look combines the comfort of a slouchy boyfriend jean with a girlie floral top and strategically placed scarf. For the warmer mid-days of Arizona winter, this look will take you far. Add a pair of open-toed booties to the ensemble to dress up the distressed denim.
Winter Fashion, The GAP

Looks Fit for a Valley Winter, Pt. 2: The GAP

Wintertime in the Valley is one of the most enjoyable times of the year. There is a reason why the snowbirds flock to Scottsdale, and it may have something to do with the warm temps. Unfortunately, dressing the part seems to be a challenge for many, but thanks to Scottsdale Quarter’s Marketing Director Alison Goodman, we have great tips for looking your best during the winter months. Alison’s sense of style is on point and for the next three weeks she will take us to three different store’s located at my favorite mall to give us examples of outfits that you can use as inspiration to spruce up your wardrobe.

Last week, we featured Free People. This week, it’s the GAP!

I think my love for fashion first started with GAP advertisements. I dreamed of being a GAP kid but now that I’m older, my vision has evolved into being a walking GAP advertisement. Its clothes are fresh, clean, crisp and sophisticated. This season, I am definitely taking a page out of the GAP catalog and applying it to my winter wardrobe. Luckily, I don’t have to do too much research on the best ways to dress this winter, because Alison Goodman is giving us some excellent tips to fashion your GAP clothing to look your best this season.

look one

To say “gray is the new black” this season is an understatement. We’re seeing the color on everything from velvet skinnies like you see here to the classic quilted Chanel handbag (drool!!). Not only is this GAP outfit on trend – velvet is having a major moment this winter season as well – it’s comfortable and cozy. One of the best features of this ensemble is the striped waffle sweater – the knit and fabric makes it the perfect sweater for Arizona winters as it’s breathable and will keep you both warm in the shade and cool in the sun.

look two

Afraid to wear white after Labor Day? So passe! Winter white is one of the chicest ways to change up your wardrobe when the weather cools down – not only will you stand out in a sea of navy blues, blacks and chocolate browns, you’ll also have the perfect pieces to transition from winter to spring. Here, an off-white chunky knit sweater adds depth to the GAP outfit – another fabric that is huge this season. And of course, you can’t go wrong with a peach-hued scarf. Another perfect transitional piece.

look three

We’re back to basics in the trendiest of ways with this layered look from GAP, where peach skinnies add a girlie element to a masculine outfit. The major players here? A ’90s-inspired plaid button-up under a crew neck sweater and a nylon, quilted jacket – quilted fabrics are one of the biggest designs we’re seeing this holiday season. Another important key to this ensemble is the layering – a necessity during Arizona winters.

Free People Fashion

Looks Fit for a Valley Winter Pt. 1: Free People

Wintertime in the Valley is one of the most enjoyable times of the year. There is a reason why the snowbirds flock to Scottsdale, and it may have something to do with the warm temps. Unfortunately, dressing the part seems to be a challenge for many, but thanks to Scottsdale Quarter’s Marketing Director Alison Goodman, we have great tips for looking your best during the winter months. Alison’s sense of style is on point and for the next three weeks she will take us to three different store’s located at my favorite mall to give us examples of outfits that you can use as inspiration to spruce up your wardrobe.

First stop on our shopping spree: Free People!

look one Layering is key during the Arizona winter months and a casual ensemble like this one from Free People is an absolute perfect choice. Flared denim is back in a big way, which coincides perfectly with the ’70s fashion influence we saw all over the fall runways. Here, a cozy tribal print cardigan tops a thin, gauzy tee, making the outfit cool-weather appropriate while providing the option to strip off the top layer should the day warm up. With a ’70s-esque floppy hat to top it all off, it’s the perfect look to channel your inner hippie chic fashionista.
look two As everyone knows, fashion is cyclical and this season, it’s all about the 90′s influences and bringing back the “grunge” look in a new way. Here, we have a pretty, girlie baby doll dress in pale pink with embedded embroidery. Knee socks not only make this dressy frock appropriate for day, but are a great alternative to tights in order to keep legs warm during the chilly mornings and evenings. Throw a gray leather bomber jacket over this dress to complete the look – Beverly Hills 90210′s Donna Martin would be proud.
look three We’ve been seeing printed pants since the spring, and they aren’t going anywhere this winter. Patterned pants are the perfect way to spice up your wardrobe and are most appropriate for the fashion risk-takers out there — these pants are definite attention-getters. What’s most eye-catching about this ensemble is the subtle way different prints have been combined, a trend that is huge going into the New Year. The key to combining different patterns is staying within the same color palette. In this case, a classic black-and-white color scheme keeps the outfit in check.
AL summer graphic-2 copy

Summer Styles Sizzle at Apricot Lane Boutique

Warm weather and constant sunshine are here – but it’s no time to get into a fashion rut! Apricot Lane Boutique has the most trend setting looks for the season of the sun, including head-to-toe outfits for under $100 that can easily be taken from day to night.

“This summer it’s all about staying cool while looking hot!” explains Jody Todd, owner of Apricot Lane Boutique Scottsdale. “We really took time to find styles from the LA fashion district that will appeal to different generations and let our customers be true to their individual comfort level all while staying within budget.”

Bright, breezy patterns, high low hems and flowing dresses will help complete the perfect summer ensemble. Staples such as colorful shorts, maxi dresses and playful sandals are must haves and will go with everything for the beach to the boardwalk during any travels. Colorful accessories brighten the season’s all white trend, helping to break up the texture and feel of an outfit. Of course, a cool cotton sweater is essential for evening strolls – pair it with a lightweight scarf to add the final touch on any look.

Mint, corals and bold color are staples throughout the locally-owned boutique while global patterns, tribal looks, watercolor and floral prints galore make this a must stop shop for your summer’s most anticipated events! Outdoor festivals, fairs, concerts and chic parties are no longer a fashion dilemma but instead an excuse to find the next must have summer style.

Created for both mothers and daughters, teens through fifties, Apricot Lane features clothing, accessories, shoes and gift items for any need. Always ahead of the curve, the store offers fashion parties for girl’s night out events, charity organizations, sororities, moms clubs and more!

Check out www.apricotlanescottsdale.com or visit them on Facebook for the most current promotions and announcements!

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Glimcher, Crescent Communities Announce Plans for Luxury Apartments at Scottsdale Quarter

 

Glimcher Realty Trust and Crescent Communities announced plans to add a 275-unit, luxury apartment community to Scottsdale Quarter in Scottsdale.

Located on the NEC of the property along Greenway-Hayden road, the community will include upscale amenities and modern décor. Development will begin in 4Q 2013.

“We are pleased to announce our partnership with Crescent Communities, one of the nation’s premier, multifamily developers,” said Michael P. Glimcher, Chairman of the Board and CEO of Glimcher. “A luxury, multi-family community has always been a part of our vision for The Quarter.

“Based on the high level of demand from retailers and businesses interested in coming to Scottsdale Quarter, adding luxury apartments will build upon the center’s current success.”

Residential amenities will include an elevated resort-style pool and a 2-story, state-of-the-art fitness center with views of McDowell Mountains, in addition to providing its occupants front-door access to exclusive retail, premier restaurants and great entertainment, including iPicTheaters, Eddie V’s, Dominick’s and True Food.

Under a joint venture agreement, Crescent will develop and manage the residential community with Glimcher maintaining a minority ownership interest.

“We could not ask for a better opportunity to bring the Crescent approach to luxury multifamily community building in the Southwest than within the experiential retail community that Glimcher Realty Trust has created with Scottsdale Quarter,” said Brian Natwick, President, Crescent Communities Multifamily Group.

“Our plan for luxury multifamily living integrates ideally with Scottsdale Quarter and furthers our mission of building authentic places that enhance the lives of people.”

Scottsdale Quarter is among Crescent’s first luxury multi-family residential communities west of the Mississippi. The company developed Portland Place in Phoenix in 2006 and last year developed and sold a luxury student housing community near the University of Texas.

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Crescent has 18 multi-family projects with 5,300 units under construction or in planning/pre-development in the Southeast, including projects in North Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia and Florida.

Scottsdale Quarter is an outdoor, urban, mixed-use development. It is home to 39 exclusive retailers and restaurants as well as 17 office tenants representing more than 1,000 employees.

 

AZ Wine Dine Logo

SECOND ANNUAL AZ WINE & DINE SIZZLES IN SCOTTSDALE THIS SPRING

The Valley’s stars of the culinary scene will gather for a high-energy celebration of food and wine at the second annual AZ Wine & Dine, hosted by the Arizona Lodging & Tourism Association, to be held at the hip, urban setting of Scottsdale Quarter on April 4, 2013.

AZ Wine & Dine night imageAZ Wine & Dine targets executive foodies and is designed to highlight the distinct variety of culinary outlets at Arizona hotels and resorts, as well as showcase several Scottsdale Quarter restaurants and a wide variety of wines and craft beers. Additionally, much of the proceeds benefit the educational efforts of the Arizona Lodging & Tourism Association.

The lush and luxe setting of Scottsdale Quarter provides the perfect setting for attendees to experience culinary delights from hotel and resort participants including: The Phoenician, The Four Seasons Scottsdale at Troon North, Fairmont Scottsdale Princess, T. Cook’s at Royal Palms, Westin Kierland, Montelucia, TK’s Urban Tavern, District American Kitchen & Wine Bar and many more.

AZ Wine & Dine dusk image“It is important for us to produce a culinary event where local foodies and business executives can be a tourist in their own town, enjoying samples from top resorts and restaurants in a fun and festive atmosphere,” said Arizona Lodging & Tourism President & CEO Debbie Johnson. “AZ Wine & Dine’s inaugural year sold out, so it’s clear that the Valley’s finest chefs combined with this venue is a recipe for success.”

AZ Wine & Dine will feature 20 booths offering culinary samples paired with fine wines and craft beers, live music from the Shining Star Band and a silent auction with amazing deals on vacation getaways and gift certificates from Scottsdale Quarter’s eclectically rich mix of specialty shops.

When: Thursday, April 4, 2013 5:00 p.m. – 8:00 pm.

Where: Scottsdale Quarter (Scottsdale Road and Greenway)

Tickets: $75 in advance; $100 day of the event (includes all food and beverage)

Advance purchase is strongly recommended as the event sold out last year.

*No one under 21 years of age will be admitted. AZ Wine & Dine will be held rain or shine.

AZWineandDine.com, Twitter: @azwineanddine, Facebook: AZ Wine & Dine

20Lounge

SPRING NAIL TRENDS AT 20 LOUNGE BOUTIQUE NAIL BAR

Spring is around the corner, and with the change of season comes fresh nail trends just in time for warmer temps and sexy spring clothes.

20 Lounge Boutique Nail Bar, a Scottsdale neighborhood beauty bar offering nail services, professional waxing and facial treatments, is breaking down the spring-time nail trends. These spring nail styles are making a serious statement and are bound to put a little extra spring in your step.

Pale Nails

The bare naked look our fingers never wanted to reveal is being sought out. Keeping it classy with barely there nail polishes, makes more of a statement about your confidence and beauty than color ever could. This minimalist trend has been growing for quite some time now.

20 Lounge Pale

Two Tone

Not too bold nor too flashy, the French manicure has been reinvented. Easy to make your own, and more fun to make colors contrast this look is great for everyone.

20 Lounge 2 Tone

Flashes of Metallics

Luxurious finishes know no shame. The nail glam galaxy is stepping up and calling all gold, silver and copper colors to complement their own. This look is accomplished by applying any base color and then topping it off with a press on foil (available at 20 Lounge) in almost any shape or style.

20 Lounge Metallic

20 Lounge opened its first location in Scottsdale (Scottsdale Road and Indian Bend Road) in 2009 and plans to open its next at Scottsdale Quarter this April.

“We are thrilled to bring another 20 Lounge to Scottsdale,” said 20 Lounge Founder and CEO Valerie Griggs. “The opportunity to open in Scottsdale Quarter next door to Dry Bar is a huge win for us and for our loyal customers. As always, we are committed to provide the highest quality services in a hip, relaxing and clean environment at prices that compete with even lower-end nail salons.”

With one other boutique in San Diego, 20 Lounge has plans to open additional locations across the West Coast over the next two years.

20 Lounge is known for its simple, affordable service menu, offering a $20 manicure, a $30 pedicure and a $40 facial everyday. Customers also have the option of joining Club 20, a monthly membership program that offers even deeper discounts to regular visitors. Along with discounted services, Club 20 members also receive a bottle of Butter London nail polish on their birthday, 20% off retail on the 20th day of the month and 10% off retail all other days, access to membership appreciation events and more.

SOL Carnitas Tacos

SOL Mexican Cocina to Introduce Taco & Tequila Tuesday on February 5

SOL Mexican Cocina is bringing a popular Southern California Tuesday night tradition to the desert! On February 5 beginning at 4 p.m., SOL Cocina is introducing Taco & Tequila Tuesday. Every Tuesday at SOL Cocina, guests will enjoy special discounts on tacos, tequila, Mexican Beer, and margaritas all night long, while also rocking out to live music. To introduce the launch of Taco Tuesday, on February 5, Major League Baseball great, Mike Hampton, will guest bartend at SOL Cocina, and guests will have a chance to win an autographed Billy Gibbons guitar.

Beginning February 5, every Tuesday from 4 p.m. to midnight enjoy specially priced tacos, guacamole, and Mexican beers, plus tequila and margaritas featuring Pura Vida, a premium tequila distilled exclusively from hand-selected and hand-harvested, estate grown, 100% Blue Weber Agave. Every Tuesday, from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m., Jake Dean will keep the party going with his blend of popular acoustic music. To kick off the festivities on February 5, Retired Major League Baseball Pitcher, Mike Hampton will be mixing up margaritas behind the bar from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Most recently with the Arizona Diamondbacks, Hampton was known throughout his career for being one of the best hitting pitchers of his time, and currently he is a spokesperson and investor in Pura Vida Tequila. Guests will also have a chance to win a signed Fender guitar by ZZ Top Frontman, Billy Gibbons, who’s also an investor in Pura Vida.

The Taco & Tequila Tuesday menu features 2 Chicken Street Tacos for $2.50, 2 Carnitas Street Tacos for $3, an Ensenada Fish Taco for $2.50, a Grilled Fish Taco for $3.50, and Naked Guacamole for $5.50. Wash down these specials with a Pura Vida House Blanco Margarita for $5.50 (regular) or $8 (grande), a Pura Vida Blanco Skinny Margarita for $6.50 (regular) or $9 (grande), a Frozen Margarita for $5.50, or a Mexican bottled beer for $3.50. For a pure tequila experience, try a Pura Vida Tequila Tasting Flight for $12.

SOL Mexican Cocina is located on the north end of The Scottsdale Quarter at 15323 N. Scottsdale Rd. For more information, call (480) 245-6708 or visit www.SOLcocina.com. Follow SOL on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/SolCocina and on Twitter at @SOL_COCINA.

golf fashion tips

Golf Fashion Tips From Sassy Golf: Dressing In Layers

Greetings, Sassanistas! This month we’re going to be talking about dressing in layers. I know that Phoenix is no Denver, but it still gets nippy from time to time — especially those winter mornings. However, the difference is it doesn’t stay that way. Thanks to the abnormally strong desert sun, the day can warm up to a perfect 70 degrees. That’s why I think layers are more of a necessity here than anywhere else.

The key to mastering this trend (yes, layering is not only practical; it just happens to be trendy as well!) is cutting out the bulk. Ensuring that your layers are lightweight will save you from a lot of discomfort both early and late in the day. Not only will you be able to have free range of motion, you’ll also be able to store them without having to drag a suitcase along with you.

What’s even better is the fact that manufactures have made a point of creating lightweight apparel without sacrificing function. Simply put: You’ll still be warm. The three most efficient ways to layer include jackets, vests and leggings. I’ll show you how to rock each look.

Golf Fashion Tips: Dressing In Layers

The Jacket

Calvin Klein Performance, $74.25 We’ll start with the most obvious choice for layering — the jacket. Again, lightweight and limiting excess bulk is key here. I would avoid any type of down jacket because you’ll feel very restricted. Although fashion is a ton of fun, the first priority is the game, and you need full range of motion, in your arms especially, for your swing.Try something like the blue, or almost periwinkle, zip-up of the Calvin Klein Performance line found on Bonton.com for $74.25. It’s almost like a down vest and zip-up in one. This is a perfect compromise because the arms are still knit and allows you that range of motion. This zip-up also comes colors ranging from a classic black to a flaming, fire-engine red; it just depends on how bold your personal style is. Just remember: If you make it a statement piece, the rest of your outfit should be toned down.

Or, try something a little more classic like the Bogner jacket to the left for $499. It fits the lightweight and movable bill, and it has this classic golf plaid pattern in a neutral black, white and gray. This makes it very versatile because it will compliment any outfit.

golf fashion tips

Leggings

To me, there is nothing worse than freezing your ass (and legs) off. But a lot of times, the lower half of your body is literally left out in the cold because it’s much more difficult to layer. My solution is leggings and legwarmers.

Leggings are great because it allows you to wear that little skirt you love no matter what the weather looks like. You can try the capri-cut, like those on the bottom left from Nordstrom for $24; or strut your stuff in a loud pattern. Leggings also come in a rainbow of colors, so feel free to play away. Again, remember a bold pattern or color should be the focal point of the outfit; keep the rest toned down.

Legwarmers, unbelievably, got reincarnated from the ’80s, and I love it. They are a lot easier to take off than leggings, if need be, and can pull your whole outfit together. For instance, I have a pair that are argyle, and they’re one of my go-to items. Just another way to add in some of that classic golf style. Check out the Burlington Classic pair (bottom, center) for $21.24. They come in almost any color combination you can imagine on Hosiera.com.

Finally, I just have to show you these. Do you remember those ill-designed cargo pants that zip off into capris and shorts? Good idea, bad design. Well, I found someone who managed to get it right. They are black J Brand skinny jeans to the bottom right. I know they’re jeans but if the denim is more of a stretch blend, which most women’s jeans are moving towards, they’ll be workable. Talk about easy and stylish.

Nordstrom, $24 Nordstrom, $40 Burlington Classic Hosiera, $21.24 J Brand, $328 J Brand, $328 Capri

The Vest

Bogner, $499 Finally, we’ll talk about the vest. This section is for those of you who just can’t fathom wearing anything other than down because no matter what people say, it’s the warmest stuff out there.A full-blown down jacket is simply not going to work, but a vest will. It’s the best of both worlds. You’re warm in your down and have complete range of motion. This is another place where you can play with color. I love this hot-pink Bogner vest (to the left) for $499. It also comes in bright orange, black and white.

Or, try something less bulky, like the sleek, black-and-white Calvin Klein Performance vest (bottom left) for $79.50 Not only does it look nice, but it’s also made out of a quick dry material to keep you comfortable in the rare occasion that it rains.

Calvin Klein Performance vest, $79.50

Where do you find all this stuff you ask? Well, online, of course; but if you are one of those people who just has to try things on, you’re in luck. Calvin Klein Performance has a store at the Scottsdale Quarter, GrayHawk Golf Club carries Bogner apparel and a Nordstrom is located at Scottsdale Fashion Square.

Hopefully now you’ll know longer say that it’s just a little too chilly to hit the golf course. If you can master layering, you’ve mastered being physically comfortable (skills aside that is) while in the game. See you later, Sassanistas!

Be strong, be smart, be sassy!

nancy-signature-001

 

Top 5: Arizona Malls, Experience AZ, Fall-Winter 2012

Top 5: Arizona Malls (Fall-Winter 2012)

The Top 5 Arizona Malls — as voted on by Experience AZ readers:

Scottsdale Fashion Square

7014-590 E. Camelback Rd.,
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
(480) 941-2140
fashionsquare.com
Scottsdale Fashion Square is a diamond in the desert, with more than 225 retailers, including Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus and Barneys New York. It’s the ultimate shopping destination.


Scottsdale Quarter

15279 N. Scottsdale Rd.,
Scottsdale, AZ 85260
(480) 270-8123
scottsdalequarter.com
This new city district is one of the most unique shopping, dining and entertainment destinations in the Valley. With lounges, bars, movies, art and fashion shows, Scottsdale Quarter is a bustling hub of activity.


Kierland Commons

15205 N. Kierland Blvd.,
Scottsdale, AZ 85254
(480) 348-1577
kierlandcommons.com
An intimate, open-air lifestyle center with extensive landscaping, upscale shops and restaurants, walkways, patios and courtyards that invite pedestrian interaction.


Biltmore Fashion Park

2502 E. Camelback Rd.,
Phoenix, AZ 85016
(602) 955-8400
shopbiltmore.com
The original luxury-shopping destination in Phoenix is a newly polished classic. Think Saks, Ralph Lauren, Escada, Apple and more. A delicious collection of restaurants, including True Food Kitchen and The Capital Grille, let you order up levels of flavorful virtue.


Desert Ridge Marketplace

21001 N. Tatum Blvd.,
Phoenix, AZ 85050
(480) 513-7586
shopdesertridge.com
Desert Ridge Marketplace delivers the ultimate shopping experience in a distinctive outdoor setting. Immerse your shopping senses in a unique blend of specialty retailers, restaurants and entertainment venues spread over 110 acres. The center’s 1.2 million square feet of retail space – home to more than 110 retailers and restaurants – bursts with color, energy and fun, creating a one-of-a-kind lifestyle destination you’ll want to come back to again and again.

Experience AZ Fall-Winter 2012

 

Elan Style's 1st Annual Dress Party

Plan Your NYE Look, From Head To Toe, At Elan Style's 1st Annual Dress Party

It’s the day after Christmas, so you know what that means: shopping for the perfect NYE outfit — if you haven’t already.

Elan Style at the Scottsdale Quarter is hosting its first annual Dress Party this Thursday, December 27 from 6 to 8 p.m.

At this party, guests will find holiday dresses 20 percent off as well as up-do demonstrations from Billare Hairdressing Academy, false eyelash demos, cupcakes, Champagne and more.

For those who haven’t been to the store, Elan Style offers chic, affordable fashion for women, including clothing, accessories, shoes and more.

For more information about Elan Style, visit azelanstyle.com.

Elan Style's 1st Annual Dress Party1st Annual Dress Party at Elan Style

When: Thursday, December 27 from 6-8 p.m.
Where: The Scottsdale Quarter
15147 N. Scottsdale Rd., #H-103
Contact: (480) 941-5575
Online: azelanstyle.com | facebook.com/ElanStyle

Kendra Scott Color Bar

Kendra Scott Jewelry Boutique Opens At Scottsdale Quarter

Kendra Scott, founder of Kendra ScottNew to the Scottsdale Quarter is jewelry boutique Kendra Scott, known for its handcrafted and custom jewelry in bold color combinations. With a fan base that includes Eva Longoria, Cameron Diaz, Hilary Duff and Sofia Vergara, Kendra Scott is a global brand sold at retailers, including Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom and Bloomingdale’s, and has locations in both Texas and California. This is the first Arizona storefront for Kendra Scott.

“On our website, we were seeing a lot of customers coming out of the Phoenix/Scottsdale area,” says Owner Kendra Scott. “When we came down and visited Scottsdale Quarter, we were just blown away by the very synergistic brands, and when you look at the Scottsdale woman, she is a Kendra Scott girl; she’s fashionable, she’s put together, she’s fun, she’s outgoing, she has a great fashion sense, and she’s not afraid to express herself with her jewelry or her fashion. So we really felt this was the place for us.”

The boutique will introduce the Scottsdale-area shoppers to the Kendra Scott Color Bar™, with boasts multiple 55″ touch-screen display monitors, iPads and a kaleidoscope of 26 gemstones and 23 jewelry silhouettes in both gold and rhodium silver settings. Although online shoppers can find this on Kendra Scott’s website, the in-store feature provides customers a hands-on, interactive experience to customize one-of-a-kind jewelry.

“People have never seen anything like this,” Scott says, “and they can’t believe they can walk out within minutes with a custom piece of jewelry. We want people to be part of the design process, and our customers just love it.”

Scott adds that the Color Bar™ is a great way to create personalized, statement jewelry as gifts for friends and loved ones this holiday season.

“We help by finding out what her favorite colors are, her skin tone, her hair color,” Scott says. “We’re able to help people find the perfect gift for someone, and we want them to be wowed when they open it. And we usually do a pretty good job at that.”

Kendra Scott also offers space available to reserve for special events, including bridal parties.

“We have a lot of customers who will bring in their outfits that they’re trying to match or a dress that they’re wearing to an event to a party,” Scott says. “We do a lot of bridal parties, so the bride will pick her colors, and her bridesmaids pick the style that they want. We make it a fun event with champagne and cupcakes.”

Not only does Kendra Scott accommodate bridal parties, but customers and charities can also take part in Kendra Gives Back parties, where local charities and those who support them are able to come in to the store and have a shopping party, with 20 percent given back to that charity.

“In our company, we have three core values, which are family, fashion and philanthropy,” Scott says. “And giving back to the community where we have stores has been very, very important to us.

“We work with a lot of women’s and children’s charities, so if there’s an organization in this area that would like to do a Kendra Gives Back event, we’re always so thrilled to do that.”

For more information about Kendra Scott, including store hours, visit kendrascott.com.


Gift Picks:
Emerald green jewelry for your fashion-forward friends:

KENDRA SCOTT Emerald Green Jewelry
1. Valerie Necklace in Green Agate, $250; 2. Marcella Statement Necklace in Green, $175; 3. Tatum Earrings in Green, $95 (celeb favorite); 4. Abena Cuff Bracelet in Green, $150


Kendra Scott

Scottsdale Quarter
15147 N. Scottsdale Rd., #H-155
(480) 525-9265
kendrascott.com

Holiday Tree Auction

Valley Shops, Sports Teams And More Participate In Holiday Tree Auction

Still looking for a Christmas tree? Or, are you looking for a way to give back this season? At The Holiday Tree Auction on Saturday, December 15 at the Scottsdale Quarter, you can do both.

Presented by Scottsdale Quarter and Steve LeVine Entertainment & Public Relations (SL), The Holiday Tree Auction will present trees, decorated by Valley shops, restaurants, brands and professional sports teams. The trees will be decked out with the latest merchandise, exclusive offers and gift cards for a good cause — the Leadership Children’s Foundation (TCLCF), a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping children. TCLCF gives money throughout the year to children’s causes that help preserve childhood and improve the quality of life for young people across the nation.

The event is open to the public, and admission is free. Shoppers are invited to bid on their favorite tree. For those who would like to take a look at the trees before placing a bid, they are welcome to stop by the Scottsdale Quarter plaza to do so. Jazz/pop recording artist Scott Keo will be in attendance, performing a collection of holiday songs prior to the action as well.

Participating tree vendors include:

  • Arizona Diamondbacks Major League Baseball team
  • Beach Bunny
  • Brillare Hairdressing Academy
  • Cobalt Mortgage
  • Evening Entertainment Group
  • FLOR
  • Free People
  • Fresh Produce
  • Gap
  • GapKids
  • iPic Theaters
  • IT’SUGAR
  • Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF)
  • The Phoenix Coyotes National Hockey League team
  • The Arizona Rattlers Arena Football League team and more.

The Holiday Tree Auction

Where: Scottsdale Quarter Plaza
15279 N. Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale
When: Saturday, December 15, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

rsz_scottsdale_quarter-1

Scottsdale Quarter Reaches Leasing Milestone

 

Scottsdale Quarter, the 28-acre, mixed-use shopping, dining and entertainment center, has reached full occupancy of its office space with the addition of Balboa Capital Corporation, a leading equipment leasing and financing company in the U.S.

Scottsdale Quarter is also home to 18 office tenants with more than 1,000 employees. The open-air center’s largest office tenants include Starwood Hotels & Resorts; Maracay Homes, a Weyerhaeuser subsidiary; iCrossing, a division of Hearst Media; and Superior Home Services.

“Reaching full occupancy is a significant milestone in this still soft, but improving, market,” said Marshall Loeb, President and COO for Glimcher Realty Trust.

“Scottsdale Quarter’s mix of distinct, first-to-market retailers and restaurants was an added incentive for potential office tenants,” Loeb said.

In comparison, the Phoenix office market witnessed a 75.6% occupancy rate in 3Q 2012.

Since breaking ground in 2007, the office leasing at Scottsdale Quarter has been handled by the CBRE team of Jerry Noble, Pat Devine, Greg Mayer and Katie Kelley.

“Scottsdale Quarter delivered into a tough economic climate, but quickly outpaced other projects that delivered at the same time,” Noble said. “Its contemporary urban design and amenity-rich environment are unique to this market and distinguish the property from its competition.”

 

Drybar Phoenix

Drybar Opens Second Location In Phoenix, With 50-60 Positions Open

Who doesn’t love Zooey Deschanel’s signature hair? Or, Jennifer Garner’s always-luscious, flowing locks? And women in Scottsdale have been following their lead, trusting one blowout salon in particular with their hair — Drybar. Due to the shop’s success at the Scottsdale Quarter, Drybar is opening a second location in Phoenix on the Camelback Corridor.

“We are thrilled to be opening our second Drybar in Arizona,” says Alli Webb, Drybar founder and longtime stylist. “Our existing Scottsdale shop in the Scottsdale Quarter has been warmly embraced by the lovely ladies in Arizona, and we are ecstatic to open Drybar in Phoenix.”

With the opening of the Phoenix location scheduled for the end of October, the blow dry bar is also looking to hire 50 to 60 people. Positions include stylists and front desk personnel.

Drybar has locations open in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Dallas, San Diego and Atlanta, and the concept — offering no cuts, no color, just blowouts — has a following of more than 200,000 loyal clients nationwide.

DrybarAnd it isn’t the shop’s customer service that’s over-the-top (in a positive way, of course); its design is, too with custom Italian chairs, tufted fabric walls, marble bar with built-in iPhone docking stations, and flat screens featuring your favorite chick flicks.

Drybar has also recently added some high-profile names to its Board, including Paul Pressler, former CEO of Gap, Inc. and a president at The Walt Disney Company; and Janet Gurwitch, founder and former CEO of Laura Mercier Cosmetics and executive vice president at Neiman Marcus.

“Drybar has created an incredibly cool and innovative experience for the consumer,” says Gurwitch. “I am excited to be joining this impressive team to further expand the Drybar brand.”

For more information about Drybar, its services and/or to apply for one of the open positions, visit thedrybar.com.

Drybar Phoenix
Where: 3172 E. Camelback Rd., Phoenix
Contact: (480) 607-5064
Online: thedrybar.com
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Scottsdale Quarter Phtography

Making the Retail Experience, Well, An Experience

Shoppers can buy just about anything they’d like or need on the Web. What they can’t do online, however, is make a craft, have their hair done by a blow-dryer-wielding stylist or munch on gourmet snacks delivered to their reserved seats as they’re watching a movie. Call it the retail experience.

It’s non-Web entertainment options such as these that mall developers are banking on to help them compete against online shopping, which over the next four years is expected to reach $327 billion in sales in the U.S. alone, according to Forrester Research Inc. Experience retail represents the future of the mall.

“Experience retail refers to how people enjoy the mall,” said Michael Glimcher, CEO of Glimcher Realty Trust, developer of Scottsdale Quarter, an open-air shopping district located near Scottsdale and Greenway roads. “Today, shopping isn’t about selecting a color and size. You can do that online. You can’t have a salad and glass of wine with girlfriends online. Going to the mall today is about entertainment, brand engagement and socializing with friends and family.”

Scottsdale Quarter has pioneered the concept of experience retail for Glimcher. Since early 2011, the shopping destination has integrated experience-based merchants into its tenant mix, including the addition of several stores and restaurants that shoppers won’t find anywhere else in Arizona. While there are still clothing-only retailers there, more than two thirds of Scottsdale Quarter’s 58 tenants offer shopping experiences and in-person-only opportunities – such as the rear-viewing booty cam at Industrie Denim – that can’t be replicated online.

At Make Meaning, for example, shoppers paint pottery, make soap and decorate picture frames. Nearby at Drybar, salon clients can have their hair straightened or curled by stylists using nothing but a brush and a blow dryer. Fitness enthusiasts tap into their inner peace at Blissful Yoga, where traditional or hot yoga classes, and the gravity-defying Yoga Wall, offer a respite from the hustle and bustle of life.

The experience retail concept exists at other Glimcher properties nationwide including Polaris Fashion Place in Columbus, Ohio; The Outlet Collection | Jersey Gardens outside New York City; the Mall at Johnson City in Tennessee; and River Valley Mall in Lancaster, Ohio. Other national retailers experimenting with the concept include the Shadow Lake Town Center in Omaha, Nebraska, and The Shoppes at Chino Hills in California.

According to Glimcher officials, experience retail benefits all of a mall’s tenants by keeping shoppers at the center for longer periods of time, and by offering people a reason to return. Activities at Make Meaning often have wait lists, so shoppers spend time by eating at the mall’s restaurants or buying merchandise at nearby stores. Crafters must return to pick up their creations also, which means an extra visit and perhaps another stop at a neighboring merchant.

Scottsdale Quarter’s upscale food establishments seem to be doing extraordinarily well with the leasing strategy. Restaurant sales have grown substantially over the last few years, despite the soft economy.

“Experience retail gets people off the computer and into the store,” said Richard Hunt, general manager of Scottsdale Quarter. “It makes shopping fun and interactive, and — as the other developers who have toured Scottsdale Quarter to see what we’re doing can attest — it’s working.”

 

 

 

 

 

minibar.ber.shop

"Get Buzzed” At minibar.ber.shop

minibar.ber.shop at Scottsdale Quarter offers excellent, affordable food, drink and barber services.


A Brazilian for your face. That’s how the barbers at minibar.ber.shop in Scottsdale Quarter describe their “manzilian” straight razor shave. Having never experienced the traditional Brazilian, I can’t definitively say how similar the two are, but it’s my suspicion that my “manzilian” was far more relaxing and absent of tears than the alternative. And here they serve beer.

Upon entering the shop, I’m greeted by a friendly receptionist. I’m presented with a list of services including the “geraldo” mustache trim, the “zz top” beard trim and, of course, the “manzilian.”

minibar.ber.shopI decide on the straight shave and my barber, Darryl, leads me to a white leather chair, which sits in front of a massive full-length mirrored cabinet. Several of these cabinets divide the shop, with barber stations on either side. The black cabinets contrast the stark white of the chair, floor and ceiling, creating a minimalist, very masculine feel.

And, did I mention they serve beer? Darryl asks me if I would like a drink from the bar (more on that later), but I decline saying that it would probably get in the way of his razor. He laughs and says “yes,” reclining my seat. He explains that ordering a drink is more common when receiving a hair cut, or any other vertically-oriented service, I imagine.

What follows is 20 minutes that feels like two hours of hot towels and luxurious oils, creams and balms. Darryl opens the side of the cabinet, retrieving the first of countless hot towels. He places the towel over my beard and wraps the ends up over my face. After a couple of steamy minutes, he removes the towel and massages pre-shave oil into my beard. He places another hot towel on my face, allowing a few minutes for the oil to soften my beard.

Darryl removes the second towel and applies a warm lather of minty shaving cream. As he shaves me with an incredibly sharp straight razor, it is immediately clear that this isn’t anything like my practice of dragging a Mach 3 across my face for a few minutes. I am at the hands of a skilled artisan with 25 years of experience. Each stroke of the razor is precise, and it’s obvious that Darryl has developed a “feel” for how to carefully trim each section of a beard.

After the first pass, yet another hot towel is applied, followed by a second lather and shave against the grain. A final hot towel steams my bare face, after which an antiseptic/ingrown hair treatment is applied. This stings in a Macauley Culkin-esque way at first, but quickly becomes refreshing, and I know it will prevent any irritation. A soothing after-shave balm is rubbed onto my skin followed by a couple minutes of an ice-cold towel on my face to end the service.

I sit up from my reclined position refreshed, and with a face smoother than any part of any baby I know. The whole process takes only 20 minutes, but I feel as relaxed as if I’d taken an afternoon nap. Darryl explains that this is a new shave that he himself designed, and that while the regular price is $30, for the month of July they’re offering this brand new treatment for $15.

And, oh yeah, they serve beer. Attached to the barbershop is the place whence the hair-cut beers flow: a bar serving up an array of beers, wines, sakes and signature “saketinis.” But don’t worry, while the bar can stay open until 2:30 a.m., the barbershop closes at 9 o’clock. No drunken straight shaves or impromptu mohawks happening here.

I take a seat at the bar and bartender Cassouki gives me the rundown: $2 beers, all day, every day. Happy hour from 4 p.m. to 7p.m. every day, featuring half-price signature drinks and panini sandwiches. I ask what she likes, and she suggests the “yogatini,” a not-too-sweet combination of ginger, lemonade and sake, garnished with a stick of blue sugar crystals.

She whips up the drink while I look over the menu. I order a prosciutto and brie panini. Both are delicious, made more so to the frugal-minded as they are both half-price for happy hour.

minibar.ber.shopWe chat as I eat and drink, and I admit that a barbershop is not the first place I would think to stop and have a drink. She tells me that they’re actually quite busy most nights. Wednesday nights feature a new energy drink called Exhale. Thursday is “Quarter Night,” where first beers are 25 cents for employees of Scottsdale Quarter, which always draws a crowd. A DJ performs on these nights as well as on Saturdays.

And draw a crowd minibar.ber.shop should. It is a very unique concept, providing upscale barber services as well as delicious, affordable food and drink. As far as I know, there’s nowhere else in town where you can leave with a fresh face, a full stomach and a snootful.

For more information about minibar.ber.shop, visit minibarbershop.com.

minibar.ber.shop
15037 N. Scottsdale Rd.
(480) 948-3900
minibarbershop.com

SOL Cocina

Mimosas & Mexican Food: Brunch At SOL Cocina

On June 23rd, SOL Cocina began serving brunch with a south-of-the-border, Baja twist.


When I think brunch, I picture myself, mimosa in hand, mingling and schmoozing with socialites donned in their Sunday best — nay, more like their Kentucky Derby attire (floppy hats, sun dresses, the whole shebang).

But, in reality, brunch is nothing like that. Well, the mimosa is still in the picture, of course; those are always involved.

For this particular Sunday morning/afternoon, we decided on SOL Cocina, which had a newly added brunch menu. Now, I had only ever ventured to Olive & Ivy for brunch, and its menu consisted of dishes with typical items, including potatoes, eggs, toast, bacon, etc. So when I asked myself if Mexican food at 11 a.m. was a good idea, I had no idea what to expect. My stomach wasn’t used to digesting south-of-the-border food before the dinner (or fourth meal) hour.

After roaming the Scottsdale Quarter, we finally found SOL Cocina, and I’m still not sure how we missed it with its bright, bold-red awning. Here’s one thing to note: There is, in fact, a parking garage located right next to the restaurant.

While waiting for our other two guests, we were greeted by our spunky waitress, who informed us that the limes, hot sauce and salt on the table were considered in Mexico the “salt and pepper of the table.” Thank goodness because I was starting to worry I wasn’t wild enough for this place, thinking margaritas were in store.

If you’re a wimp like me and can’t handle spicy or hot food, go easy on the “mild” salsa when tostada dipping. Considered an eight (out of 10) by the restaurant, the waitress swore it was more of a two. No, that salsa had a spicy kick when I least expected it. Looks like I have at least one thing in common with the one who gave the salsa that eight rating — we’re salsa soul mates.

So as I washed down the salsa with my mimosa — which, by the way ladies and the only 20-something male in the restaurant that day daintily sipping on one, SOL offers $1 refills, after paying the initial $7; what a deal! — I skimmed the menu, looking over the brunch options, and this caught every one of our eyes: “Enough to feed the whole family — ”. We scoffed. Papas ‘Papi’, challenge accepted. We also ordered the Machaca Wrap Ahogado, the Breakfast Torta and the Souffle Carlotta.

Rounds of coffee, orange juice and water later, our food — or shall I say, “feast” — arrived.

Two things: One, they weren’t kidding about the Papas ‘Papi’ feeding the entire family; and two, just how big of a family are they referring to anyway?

The Papas ‘Papi’ was a heart-stopping heap of food, with potatoes, onions, melted cheese, pork chorizo, bacon, serrano chiles, green onions and pice de gallo — all smothered with crema. It made the rest of our dishes look like amuse-bouches. Surprisingly, the Papas ‘Papi’ was my favorite of the four dishes.

The Souffle Carlotta came in second, with its soft and sweet Mexican kick. Considered SOL’s version of the French toast, the Souffle Carlotta had a hint of Patron Citronage and lemon zest in the bread pudding, which, for a slight moment, brought back memories of my grandmother’s flan. (The language isn’t the only thing the Mexican and Filipino cultures have in common, even if just slightly.) Topped and drizzled with organic agave syrup, mango, berries, vanilla whipped cream, almonds and powdered sugar, this dish quickly became a favorite.

As for the Machaca Wrap Ahogado, who doesn’t love machaca? Growing up in Yuma, Ariz., I had yet to find a Mexican food restaurant in the Valley that ever came close to the authentic food found in the town bordered by both Mexico and California; but with this machaca dish, SOL Cocina is now the closest thing.

Cooked with ancho chile, onion, cumin and oregano, the shredded beef concoction folded in a flour tortilla with eggs, cheese, refried beans, all topped with red salsa and pico de gallo, had “great flavor composition,” according to one of my brunch companions. The layers of ingredients complemented one another and wasn’t as overwhelming as I thought it would be.

The Breakfast Torta, on the other hand, was a more traditional brunch entree, compared to the flavor combinations of the other three dishes. The telera roll stuffed with eggs, cheese, bacon, avocado and pickled jalapenos, however, was still a delicious treat. Compared to other greasy, messy tortas I’ve had in the past, this one tasted fresh and didn’t weigh me down. (And this is probably due to the fact that SOL Cocina works with fresh, seasonal ingredients.)

With its old world charm, SOL Cocina not only offers a comfortable, cozy environment to gather with friends and family on an early Sunday afternoon, it also offers authentic Mexican, Baja California inspired cuisine and authentic flavors.

In hindsight, I’m glad we parked on the other side of the Quarter; I definitely needed to walk off all of that food — and window shop, of course.

For more information about SOL Cocina, visit solcocina.com.

SOL Mexican Cocina
15323 N. Scottsdale Rd.
(480) 245-6708
solcocina.com

TK's Urban Tavern

TK's Urban Tavern: Fantastic Food In A Trendy, Sophisticated Atmosphere

I have to admit that when it comes to Kierland Commons, Scottsdale Quarter and CityNorth, I have a hard time keeping up with what is new and where it is located within the three similar destinations. A friend of mine recommended TK’s Urban Tavern located in Scottsdale Quarter, and I was looking forward to checking out the new hot spot.

Named after the founding owner, Tom Kelly, TK’s offers a comfortable atmosphere and an expertly placed patio, perfect for taking in the Quarter and enjoying cocktails.

Joining a friend for an impromptu Saturday evening dinner, we headed to TK’s to sample what they have to offer. The restaurant has a trendy, sophisticated feel with an open dining room. The staff was friendly and knowledgeable, willing to confidently recommend their favorite dishes.

Initial observation of the appetizer and drink options revealed a nice balance of pricing and options without being overwhelmed by a 10-page menu. Warning: The description of the “You Call It” Smirnoff Vodka accompanied with your favorite mixer for $6.95 was not as it seemed. After commenting to the server that it was a great deal, my friend ordered a Raspberry Smirnoff and soda. It wasn’t until the bill arrived that we were made aware that we were charged much more for flavored vodka. Of course, it could be argued that we should have known. However, I feel it is the responsibility of the server to pay attention to what the guest is commenting on to ensure that they understand the menu appropriately. Aside from the vodka miscommunication, the drink prices were reasonable, and the options were plentiful and provided something for everyone.

A summary of what we experienced at TK’s Urban Tavern:

Appetizer: Housemade Mac & Cheese

With a good choice of unique appetizers, we chose to start with the Housemade Mac & Cheese ($7.95). Made with local white cheddar, elbow pasta and topped with panko bread crumbs, I found the dish to be a bit bland in flavor. Once we added some much-needed salt and pepper, the taste was actually very good.

Entrées: Shrimp Linguini and Rock Shrimp Corn Chowder

Although on the pricier side, there were great options available for our main dish. I chose the Shrimp Linguini served with tomatoes, garlic white wine sauce and lemon parsley ($17.95). I was blown away by this dish! The lemon and garlic complimented the shrimp beautifully. The portion was appropriate and overall fantastic.

We also ordered the Rock Shrimp Corn Chowder ($8.95). Unlike many types of chowder, the TK’s version wasn’t super thick and heavy. The chowder was light and full of flavor. We were also impressed by the amount of shrimp included in the chowder, making it an overall great choice when you visit.

Dessert: Root Beer Float

It brought a smile to my face to see a root beer float option for dessert — I couldn’t resist! Simply served with vanilla bean ice cream in a large chilled mug, it was a great way to end our meal ($4.00).

Overall, the visit was enjoyable. The look and feel of TK’s makes it a good choice for an evening out in Scottsdale if you are willing to spend a little more than normal for a relaxed meal. I was happy with the quality of the food for the price I paid, but would not recommend it as a regular stop for anyone on a budget.

TK’s Urban Tavern Rating:

Food: 4 out of 5
Service: 3 out of 5
Atmosphere: 5 out of 5

TK’s Urban Tavern
15037 N. Scottsdale Rd., #J-195
Scottsdale, AZ 85254
(480) 664-0873
tksurbantavern.com
AZ Wine & Dine

AZ Wine & Dine Makes Use Of Forks, Corks [PHOTOS]

The mission of first-ever AZ Wine & Dine on April 12 at Scottsdale Quarter, which took the place of the Arizona Lodging & Tourism Association’s long-running culinary event Forks & Corks, was to highlight the distinct variety of culinary outlets at Arizona hotels, resorts and restaurants while offering a variety of wines and craft beers designed to satisfy any palette.

Judging by the more than 750 guests who enjoyed tantalizing tastes from the renowned chefs at the Four Seasons Troon North, Fairmont Scottsdale Princess, Montelucia, Arizona Grand Resort and many more, as well as the sumptuous sips provided by Hensley, Young’s Market Company and others, it was a mission well-accomplished.

And then some.

While the final numbers are still being tallied, organizers estimate that the event raised about $20,000 to support the Arizona tourism industry.

Arizona tourism’s impact, by the numbers:

  • 36.9 Million: Number of domestic and international overnight visitors who experienced Arizona as a travel destination.
  • $48 Million: Amount of direct traveler spending being contributed to our state’s economy every single day.
  • $2.5 Billion: Amount of local, state and federal tax revenues generated as a result of direct traveler spending.
  • $1,040: Tax revenue generated by the tourism industry lessens the tax burden by $1,040 for every Arizona household.
  • No. 1: Where the travel and tourism industry ranks among Arizona’s export-oriented industries.

According to guest feedback, among the biggest and brightest highlights of the event:

  • Live music, which was provided by The Shining Star Band
  • Silent auction, which offered amazing vacation packages from the state’s top resorts, restaurants and spas
  • “Foodie” food, including short ribs from Westin Kierland, Kobe sliders from the Phoenician, and cioppino from the Montelucia
  • Libation innovations, including Moet Champagne from Narcisse, flaming coffee drinks from La Hacienda, and sangria from New Age Winery

Based on the event’s overwhelming success, plans are already underway for next year.

For more information about AZ Wine & Dine, please visit azwineanddine.com.


AZ Wine & Dine

Photos: Cory Bergquist

 

SOL Mexican Cocina

SOL Mexican Cocina: A Healthy Approach To Mexican Food

Push away that heaping plate of beans, rice and melted cheese, and take a healthier approach to Mexican food with SOL Mexican Cocina.

SOL Mexican Cocina offers an alternative to Mexican food we are used to, focusing on healthy but flavorful cuisine in smaller portions. Opening its second location at the Scottsdale Quarter within the first two weeks of March, SOL Mexican Cocina models the cuisine and atmosphere of Baja, Mexico.

Rich Howland, operating partner of SOL Mexican Cocina, says that the goal of the restaurant is for diners to feel like they are on vacation while enjoying traditional cuisine and handcrafted cocktails.

“What you will find on our menu is a large selection of appetizers that have very bold flavors and are really designed to share,” Howland says. “You order three, four or five different things, and it keeps that social environment we discovered down in Baja.”

Deborah M. Schneider, executive chef of SOL Mexican Cocina, says her inspiration comes from Mexico, not from other Mexican restaurants in America. Schneider who is the author of “Baja! Cooking on the Edge” as well as five other books on Mexican cooking says traditional Mexican food is lighter and better for you.SOL Mexican Cocina

Most of the items on the menu are vegetable-based, high in fiber and include healthier items like brown rice. But this does not go along with the myth that all healthy food has to be boring and tasteless. In fact, at SOL Mexican Cocina it is quite the opposite.

Schneider says the trick to healthy, flavorful food is keeping it simple with fresh, high-quality produce.

“Chef always emphasizes letting the flavors speak for themselves,” Howland says. “If you take a really fresh, high-quality tomato, it tastes how a tomato should.”

Even the bar uses only the freshest, best-quality ingredients. For instance, the margarita sour mix is made from fresh juice everyday, and all cocktails are handcrafted with muddled fruit that also arrives daily.

SOL Mexican Cocina has created 20 to 25 original cocktails switched in and out throughout the year based on what fruit is in season.

Howland says SOL Mexican Cocina also strives to stimulate your visual senses and in doing so created a sophisticated but casual environment for their diners to enjoy.

“We hope the end result is people feel comfortable, but they also look at it from a standpoint of being stimulated visually because great food is enhanced through your other senses: smell, taste and sight,” Howland says.

The open kitchen may contribute to that.

“I insist on cooking in an open kitchen because of two reasons,” Schneider says. “One, the kitchen is the heart of the restaurant, and two, because they can see us, and we can see them. I am cooking for a real person, and I think it creates a deeper connection in each direction.”

Howland says a successful restaurant has to include more than great food nowadays.

“It has to be about atmosphere, ambiance and the environment that you create within the restaurant,” Howland says. “I think that really is our goal, to capture not just the great food, which you would expect but also focusing on creating a comfortable, social, fun and high-energy environment.”

For more information about SOL Mexican Cocina, visit solcocina.com.

Brandon's Best List: Best Valley Food

Brandon’s Best List: The Best Valley Food

Brandon’s Best List: The Best Valley Food

1. BEST Greek Food /Gyro Sandwich:
Gyros Express / Gyros Restaurant

Price: $

What to order:

  • Gyro Sandwich with extra creamy homemade tzatziki sauce
  • Compliment your sandwich with a basket of freshly made crispy french fries.
7132 E Becker Ln
Scottsdale, AZ 85254
(480) 483-0300
Best Valley Food, Best Greek FoodIn a bit of an awkward location lies a gem of a restaurant … that is of course if you enjoy the traditional Gyro Sandwich as much as I do. Throughout my travels, I have come to try more than a few Greek eateries in the Phoenix/Scottsdale area that claim to have the best gyro. However, there is only one in my opinion that deserves the crown. Gyros Express is family owned and operated and has been located at its Scottsdale location since 1980 for good reason. As you watch the lamb being cut directly off of the leg rotisserie, one thing that’s apparent is nothing’s frozen here.

2. BEST French Dip: Houston’s Restaurant

Price: $$$

What to order:

  • “Famous French Dip Au Jus” with a side of creamy horseradish
  • Try the hand-cut shoestring french fries or a baked potato if it’s dinner time; you won’t be disappointed.
6113 N. Scottsdale Rd.
Scottsdale, AZ 85250
(480) 922-7775
hillstone.com
Best Valley Food
There is no shortage of places in the Valley where one can order the classic prime rib French dip au jus sandwich. However, few restaurants get it right. Houston’s, part of the Hillstone Restaurant Group, provides a rich, sophisticated atmosphere, all the while serving up one of the best french dips around. It consists of thinly sliced roasted prime rib cooked to perfection, piled high upon a toasted house-made French roll.

3. BEST Hot Dog: Taste of Chicago

Price: $

What to order:

  • Hot dog or Polish sausage with your choice of toppings, but make sure to include cheese as one of them.
  • Share a basket of cheese fries, and enjoy a soda.
13802 N. Scottsdale Rd., Ste. 130
Scottsdale, AZ 85254
(480) 951-1615
Supplied by Vienna Beef, Taste of Chicago is one of the best places in Phoenix and Scottsdale to satisfy your hot dog craving.

4. BEST Barbeque Baby Back Ribs: Charleston’s Restaurant

Price: $$

What to order:

  • House salad that includes eggs, cheese, bacon with creamy garlic dressing and a honey butter croissant
  • Barbeque baby back ribs with a baked potato; try the glazed carrots instead of the beans.
1040 N. 54th St., Chandler
(480) 961-9434
1623 S. Stapley Dr., Mesa
(480) 635-9500
17001 N. Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale
(480) 563-7666charlestons.ehsrg.com
Best Valley FoodEverything here is made in-house; from the salad dressings to the soup, it’s all freshly concocted just for you. That being said, you can pretty much order anything on the menu and not be disappointed. However, if you like ribs, you’re at the right place. Topped with Charleston’s signature barbeque sauce, “fall off the bone tender” doesn’t even begin to describe how good these ribs are.

5. BEST Steak: Eddie V’s at the Scottsdale Quarter

Price: $$$$

What to order:

  • Start off with a bowl of the Main lobster and Shrimp bisque made with fresh Maine lobster, cream and cognac.
  • Dinner entree: Filet Mignon (cooked medium) with a side of Bearnaise sauce
  • Share a side of crab fried rice or scalloped potatoes au gratin.

 

15323 N. Scottsdale Rd., #E1-160
Scottsdale, AZ 85254
(480) 730-4800
www.eddiev.com
Best Valley FoodOne thing is for sure about Arizona — it does not have a shortage of steakhouses, most of which are on the expensive side. That being said only a handful dish out great dining experiences that are worth the drain on your wallet. Whether it’s a special occasion or you just feel like indulging, Eddie V’s is the place to do it. An elegant contemporary atmosphere provides the perfect setting for some of the best cuts of beef in town.

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