You Have Arrived: Frank Aazami and the Private Client Group

Those who know us have seen that the Private Client Group brand at Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty has a passion for offering first-class service coupled with top-tier print to web marketing exposure of our listings.

Your trust and commitment to working with us has given us a ranking as the No. 1 Sotheby’s International Realty team in Arizona — and No. 9 team worldwide in 2018. Our properties have historically sold at the highest values within the shortest time. Our successes have also set us apart by conversing with and serving collectors and trendsetters who are connoisseurs of Sotheby’s International Realty fine living lifestyle from around the globe.

Click here to view Frank’s ELITE agent ad in Unique Homes ELITE 2020.

Click here to view Frank’s info on the Unique Homes Elite page.

Our ability to elaborate on topics that matter most to our clientele has truly defined who our members are: We like to say they are veterans of making dreams come true. Our exclusive partnership with media giants has also helped us assemble the content within this issue that we hope you’ll enjoy. These efforts have garnered savvy and refined international buyers for our properties.

We achieved our reputation by affiliations—best practices and best strategies to sell a home—not just to “list a home,” but to sell a home not merely by “showing it.” The Private Client Group expansion and footprint in over 75 international luxury markets will promote and unite the best sales our market can earn. Earlier this year, we set the record for selling the highest residential sale ever recorded on the Arizona Regional MLS.

When you’re ensconced in that unique experience of a property, particularly one that has been the labor of passion or love, the home almost becomes a window to the soul. To have the opportunity in understanding the life journey within a home is exactly why it’s so easy for us to become passionate about real estate.

The Private Client Group is ready to make your real estate journey a memorable experience… all by design, not by luck. We very much look forward to personalizing our extensive services for you.

Photo courtesy of Troon North Golf Club

With art museums, golf courses and luxury architecture, Scottsdale, Arizona is more than just a desert town. 

Known as The West’s Most Western Town, Scottsdale, Arizona, is certainly more than just a desert town as it is annually rated among the nation’s most desirable communities to live in, visit and conduct business. Three focuses in particular are art, golf and architecture, each a key draw for the luxury sector and ones that have shaped the culture of the city. 

Among Scottsdale’s 80 art galleries are museums that not only showcase fantastic creations from artists, but also provide an insight to the city’s past. One in particular is Western Spirit: Scottsdale’s Museum of the West, located in Old Town, which offers high-quality exhibitions reflecting the arts and dynamic cultural exchanges in the city’s history. Dr. Tricia Loscher, assistant director of collections, exhibitions and research at Western Spirit, says that the Scottsdale art scene started at the Arizona Craftsmen Center in the 1940s, where skilled artisans could work and collaborate together, and customers could watch art being created in front of their eyes. These artists in turn helped to elevate Scottsdale’s cultural standing by showing and selling their unique creations. 

 

Photo courtesy of © Loren Anderson 2018

Museum of the West

Today, artists are continually drawn to Scottsdale, a place that is recognized worldwide as a destination for art collectors and enthusiasts. The diversity of the city’s artistic community, says Loscher, leaves visitors remarking on how much there is to see, and that it cannot all be viewed in one trip. “You’ll want to come back again and again because you can’t possibly do justice to what Scottsdale has to offer.”

Photo courtesy of © Jill Richards Photography

Taliesin West

The distinctive landscape of Arizona, punctuated by giant granite boulders strewn across the rugged Sonoran Desert, is the perfect playground for those who live and breathe the golf lifestyle. There are several key points as to why Scottsdale is such a popular golf destination, according to Mike Friend, director of sales at Troon North Golf Club, from wonderful weather to the beautiful desert itself. “The unique desert layouts are so different from typical tree-lined golf [courses],” he notes, adding that players love how the green grass contrasts from the desert browns. 

This culture began in the 1990s as many courses over the last 30 years were built around luxury residential developments and communities, which also stimulated the growth of resorts and travel interest overall. “The growth of this type of traveler created a need for more golf,” Friend says. The travel fever has not stopped since, and from the variety of activities and sights, Scottsdale is bound to experience growth and diversity for years to come.

Also nestled in the desert, along the foothills of the McDowell Mountains, is an architectural mecca — Taliesin West, known to historians as Frank Lloyd Wright’s desert laboratory in Arizona. Taliesin West was Wright’s beloved winter home and the headquarters of the Taliesin Fellowship, an architectural marvel that has since become a National Historic Landmark, as well as the home of the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation and the School of Architecture at Taliesin. 

“[Wright] found the site in 1937 and with his apprentices began experimenting with new materials and building techniques to create a desert camp that embodied his principles of organic architecture,” according to Foundation president and CEO Stuart Graff. The Foundation works to preserve the site and Wright’s legacy through programs that bring more than 110,000 visitors to Scottsdale. Here Wright’s experimental camp is open to the world as a living expression of his ideal vision for how he wanted humanity to live in harmony with the world around us.

Photo courtesy of © 2016 Andrew Pielage

Taliesin West

     

This editorial originally appeared in Unique Homes Winter 2020.

These U.S. West Coast resorts are lauded for their outstanding views, stellar dining options, and luxurious vacation packages and amenities.

 

POST RANCH INN, BIG SUR, CALIFORNIA

 

A serene retreat along the California coastline, the Post Ranch Inn offers both beautiful ocean and mountain views. None of the rooms include televisions or alarm clocks, so a vacation here really is one for relaxation and retreat. Available to all guests are nature walks, stargazing, infinity pool spas, and spa packages.

 

Courtesy of Kodiak Greenwood

 

THE RITZ-CARLTON, HALF MOON BAY, CALIFORNIA

 

Escape the hustle of San Francisco and Silicon Valley and retreat to this resort, just 30 minutes from both. The Ritz-Carlton offers secluded cliff-top views of the Pacific and an opportunity to enjoy the California woods. With a luxury spa, tennis and other amenities, this resort proves Half Moon Bay is not to be overlooked.

 

Photo by Veronica Werhane

 

AMANGIRI, UTAH

 

The 5-star Amangiri is smack in the middle of the Colorado Plateau, offering unbeatable views of Canyon Point, Utah’s geological masterpieces. With an emphasis on wellness, this resort will rejuvenate guests with opportunities for hiking, climbing, and relaxing at the spa. Explore the canyons by hot air balloon or kayak Lake Powell; the expeditions are endless.

 

Courtesy of Aman

 

BOULDERS RESORT AND SPA, ARIZONA

 

Travel + Leisure voted Boulders Resort and Spa the Best Hotel in Arizona, and with good reason. For the most luxurious and private getaway this resort has to offer, choose the Villa Retreat. This package includes two expansive villas, complete with a private infinity pool, Japanese soaking tub, barbecue pit and kitchens, and large master bedroom overlooking massive rock formations.

 

Courtesy of Boulders Resort and Spa

 

This originally appeared in Unique Homes Fall ’18

Click here to view the digitial edition.

They’re going fast! Mountain Shadows’ new resort condominiums and suites are flying quickly off the market, with only 13 of the 42 units remaining. These brand-new condos in the luxury wing of Mountain Shadows in Paradise Valley, Arizona mark the completion of the $100 million new-build resort in March 2018.

 

Sitting at the foot of Camelback Mountain, Mountain Shadows Resort Condominiums is the first three-story resort residential building in Paradise Valley, designed for those seeking “lock and leave” resort-style living. Direct access to the entire Mountain Shadows resort encourages owners to take advantage of incredible amenities and resort perks, such as housekeeping, valet and concierge services, access to the wellness-centric Citizens Club and juice bar, and access the only 18-hole, par-3 golf course in Arizona. The Mountain Shadows Resort Condominiums offers studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom floor plans, ranging from 1,000 to 3,410 square feet and priced from $840,000 to $4.1 million.

Designed by Scottsdale-based Allen + Philp Architects, each condo and suite at Mountain Shadows Resort Condominiums is a personal retreat for residents to rest among the best of mid-century modernism and contemporary design.

 

An icon of the desert, Mountain Shadows is an upscale boutique resort, with its roots in 1950’s modernism. The original property closed in 2004, replaced by a $100 million new-build resort by acclaimed developers of Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain Resort & Spa and Hotel Valley in April 2017. A brand new fitness center and outdoor pool unveiled during the opening, called The Citizens Club, a high-tech fitness center offering an array of 60-minute classes, and two 75-foot pools, connected by a modern waterfall feature and dramatic views of Camelback Mountain and the surrounding desert beauty.

 

 

Photos courtesy of Mountain Shadows

guests at tanque verde ranch can adventure through miles of horseback riding trails that go deep into the rincon mountains and Sonoran desert.

Seated in the sweeping mountain ranges and boundless desert of Tucson, Arizona, Tanque Verde Ranch combines the spirit of the Old West with today’s modern amenities.

“We’re right at the base of the Rincon Mountains, and the sunsets here are like no other,” says Terry Hanley, the general manager of Tanque Verde Ranch.

Spectacular scenic views can be witnessed in one of the various lodging options, which are tastefully decorated in a traditional southwestern theme with adobe walls and Santa Fe-style architecture.

Celebrating its 150th anniversary, Hanley recalled how Tanque Verde Ranch started as a cattle ranch in the ’20s and was eventually turned into a horse ranch. With more than 150 horses provided by the ranch, guests can take horseback riding lessons or adventure through miles of horseback riding trails.

Every Sunday and Thursday morning, guests can go on an unforgettable trail ride passed towering cacti and rolling hills to the Old Homestead where freshly prepared breakfast is served.

“We are famous for our blueberry pancakes,” Hanley says.

This ultimate dude ranch experience provides a wide range of activities such as fishing, swimming, mountain biking and hiking. The ranch also has outdoor cookouts, country music entertainment and coordinated activities such as chili cook-offs.

  — Brielle Bryan

Photos courtesy of Tanque Verde Ranch

Real estate professional Jennie Heal puts her skills as an auctioneer to work for good causes.

By Roger Grody

Supreme Auctions provides an alternative marketing strategy for sellers of luxury real estate. The Scottsdale, Arizona-based firm’s President, Jennie Heal, explains, “We saw an opportunity to provide owners the ability to sell their property in a more expedited manner and many times for far more money than traditional real estate can bring.” She reports the process has been embraced by sellers, listing agents and buyers.

Since its founding 15 years ago, Supreme Auctions has achieved a 94-percent success rate while selling in 70 different countries. “We’re very selective about the properties we auction, accepting only about 10 percent that come to us,” says Heal, a veteran broker with extensive experience in international marketing. She joined the company more than 12 years ago as director of marketing before ascending to the position of president. The auction process is familiar to Heal, as this is a prevailing means of selling luxury manors and estates in her native England.

Growing up in rural Somerset, Heal frequently attended auctions with her father, a farmer who enjoyed bidding on cattle and antiques. “I was bitten by the bug at an early age, but remember him saying, ‘Keep your hands in your pocket,’” says Heal of those childhood experiences. Even after joining a real estate auction company, the seasoned professional’s development as an actual auctioneer occurred very much by accident.

Supreme Auctions President Jennie Heal

“I was attending an event to raise money for my son’s school, and the auctioneer never showed up,” recounts Heal. “One of the parents said, ‘You work for an auction company … why don’t you do it?’ and I found myself on stage.” After her reluctant debut, another parent commented, “You’re really good at this!” When she decided to get serious about auctioneering, Heal attended the Texas Auction Academy and additionally the Professional Ringmen’s Institute.

Heal now serves as a charity benefit auctioneer at approximately 50 events per year, but spends a considerable amount of time before each auction with representatives of the nonprofit organization. “I want to thoroughly understand their missions so I can be as effective as possible in raising money for them,” says Heal, who views herself equal parts salesperson and auctioneer. “I see myself as a conduit from the nonprofit to the audience and frequently conduct additional pledge donations at the conclusion of the live auction,” she explains.

“I was attending an event to raise money for my son’s school, and the auctioneer never showed up,” recounts Heal. “One of the parents said, ‘You work for an auction company … why don’t you do it?’ and I found myself on stage.”

Bringing the spirit of Sotheby’s or Christie’s to those nonprofit galas, Heal’s work has benefitted a diverse array of charities, including Ronald McDonald House Charities, YWCA, Phoenix Zoo, Arizona Foundation for Women, and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Legendary for covering all costs of a child’s care, as well as the family’s travel, housing and food expenses, St. Jude is a particularly personal passion of Heal’s, whose brother is a brain tumor survivor. The non-profit has selected her to conduct auctions across the country and Heal never declines an opportunity to raise money for its world-class treatment and research.
Back at her day job with Supreme Auctions, Heal is creating a culture in which giving back to the community is strongly encouraged.

Last year, she and her staff participated as a team, cleaning facilities for Family Promise, an organization that rescues homeless families from the streets. This year, they are planning to work together on a Habitat for Humanity house.

Heal, who lives in Scottsdale with her husband and two children, loves the outdoors. “Any day I am not sat behind a desk is a great day,” she quips.

 
State capitals are oftentimes thriving cities with a lot of economic and cultural value. In fact, they can be some of the best places to live in America. But not all state capitals are created equal. WalletHub has put together a list of 2018’s Best State Capitals to live in. And though 17 of them are the largest cities in their states, the biggest population doesn’t always represent the best quality of life.
In order to determine which state capitals make the best homes, WalletHub compared all 50 across 51 key indicators of affordability, economic strength, quality of education and health, and overall living standards. Our data set ranges from cost of living to K–12 school-system quality to number of attractions.

Best State Capitals to Live In

  1. Austin, TX
  2. Madison, WI
  3. Boise, ID
  4. Lincoln, NE
  5. Bismarck, ND
  6. Raleigh, NC
  7. Denver, CO
  8. Salt Lake City, UT
  9. Juneau, AK
  10. Concord, NH
  11.  Columbus, OH
  12. Helena, MT
  13. Olympia, WA
  14. Oklahoma City, OK
  15. St. Paul, MN
  16. Cheyenne, WY
  17. Montpelier, VT
  18. Pierre, SD
  19. Des Moines, IA
  20. Phoenix, AZ

Pictured above: Columbus, OH waterfront; Oklahoma City, OK

Out of these places:

  • Juneau, Alaska, has the highest median household income (adjusted for cost of living), $67,310, which is 2.6 times higher than in Hartford, Connecticut, the city with the lowest at $26,264.
  • Bismarck, North Dakota, has the lowest unemployment rate, 1.7 percent, which is 4.6 times lower than in Hartford, Connecticut, the city with the highest at 7.8 percent.
  • Providence, Rhode Island, has the lowest share of state-, local- and federal-government employees, 8.4 percent, which is 4.6 times lower than in Juneau, Alaska, the city with the highest at 38.4 percent.
  • Madison, Wisconsin has the highest share of adults 25 years and older with at least a bachelor’s degree, 56.3 percent, which is 4.7 times higher than in Trenton, New Jersey, the city with the lowest at 11.9 percent.

For the full story, and the entire list of best small cities, visit WalletHub.com.

Phoneix, AZ

Denver, CO

From the lively streets of Chapel Hill, North Carolina and the serenity of Northern Georgia to the stoic desert landscapes of Arizona, homes that favor resort-style luxury are in demand.

By Kristen Ordonez

The Waterfall Club at Lake Burton

Situated in the mountains of Northern Georgia, The Waterfall Club provides social and golf memberships and a wide variety of activities and services. This pristine resort is a focal point for buyers interested in homes within the Lake Burton area, which provides the most luxurious real estate options, according to Julie Barnett, Realtor from Harry Norman, Realtors.

“Rabun County sits in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains,” Barnett says. “It is 67 percent national forest, so there is very little development on the mountains. There is hiking, biking, shopping in the small boutiques in Clayton and a variety of great restaurants.”

For those who have already staked their claim within the area, the perks of living there only seem to grow with Five-Star dining, two marinas and the Bent Grass fairways, which offer unsurpassed beauty and play ability. The current highest listing in Waterfall is $3.5 million, with other available homes ranging from 300 to 10,000 square feet.

The Triangle of North Carolina

One area that is used to the hustle and bustle of a resort-type atmosphere is the Triangle area of North Carolina, specifically the cities of Cary, Chapel Hill, Durham and Raleigh. Realtor Jennifer Guyer-Stenner of Fonville Morisey Realty notes that this area is considered a “miniature Silicon Valley and encompasses three premier universities (UNC, NC State, and Duke),” resulting in “a true melting pot” of residents who frequently flock to sporting events, recreational lakes, and golf courses such as Governors Club, Wakefield and Northridge.

With 750 luxury homes on the market in the Triangle area priced above $750,000, and the highest priced listing at nearly $7 million, Stenner affirms that this location will satisfy the needs of any discerning buyer.

Arizona

Something important to consider when purchasing a home is to find a “real estate professional who knows where the values [and] where the safest investments are,” according to Realtor Frank Aazami. Both Aazami and Lisa Westcott-Wadey, who thrive as Realtors with Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty in Arizona, know the values that can be found in their areas.

“Arizona has many attractions and outdoor activities that most don’t realize,” Wadey states. With up-and-coming residential opportunities like the new Ritz-Carlton Residences in Paradise Valley and tech industries in Mesa and Chandler, both local out-of-state buyers seem to be flocking toward The Grand Canyon state for resort communities.

Whether your home of choice is the close to $20 million home in Silverleaf or something lower on the spectrum, the market is open, but fierce. According to Wadey, “buyers want what they want and they are not willing to settle.”

courtesy jennifer guyer-stneer, fonville morisey realty

photo ©thompsonphotographic.com 2015
courtesy Lisa Westcott-Wadey / The W. Group

courtesy Frank Aazami/tourfactory

These new residential options will bring two very different options to Pine Canyon residents. ​

Renderings courtesy Pine Canyon.

Pine Canyon, a private golf course and residential community in Flagstaff, Arizona, is preparing to break ground on estate homes and condos as the community experiences an increase in demand. Both Coconino Ridge and Mountain Vista will begin construction this summer.

Coconino Ridge, a moderately secluded enclave of 32 homesites nestled against the Coconino National Forest and overlooking picturesque hiking trails, will debut with a model that follows the 3-bedroom, 3.5-bath Coronado floorplan. The 2,660-square-foot model features an open floorplan, and utilizes center sliding doors to blend indoor and outdoor living.

Prices for homes in Coconino Ridge will range from $900,000 to $1.4 million, and the community began accepting reservations for in April.

“This neighborhood in particular really embraces its surroundings by offering design elements that strategically create a sense of inclusion, allowing the outdoor environment in and vice versa,” said Peter Burger, president of Symmetry Companies, which owns and manages Pine Canyon. “Coconino Ridge fosters flexibility when it comes to design, which is one of the reasons homeowners are offered unique options, from pocketing glass wall systems to bonus rooms, to customize their space at Pine Canyon.”

Mountain Vista, a village of condominiums that caters to buyers who appreciate a lock-and-leave lifestyle, will include 12 buildings with units ranging from 1,640 square feet to 1,990 square feet. Owners have the option of choosing fully-furnished units, and may also choose to have Pine Canyon manage their unit in their absence.

The following article originally appeared in the Spring 2017 issue of ERA Real Estate Distinctive Properties Magazine.

Not a single detail is an afterthought in this custom-built golf club home, approximately 90 minutes northeast of Scottsdale.

Photo courtesy Harold Rush


By Sarah Binder

Rising seamlessly out of a promontory within Payson, Arizona’s The Rim Golf Club, 2608 East Rim Club Drive is a collector’s paradise.

The three-bedroom, four-bath mountain home boasts a stunning collection of 360-degree panoramic views that connect each room to its surroundings — Mogollon Rim, miles of the nearly 3 million-acre Tonto National Forest, and a bird’s-eye view of the Tom Weiskopf- and Jay Morrish-designed golf course, featuring the largest stand of Ponderosa pines in the country.

Indoors, the owners’ love for…

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