We have a thriving Arizona youth sport during this Winter Olympic year that might be a surprise – Alpine Ski and Snowboard racing.
Alpine skiing has been one of the Winter Olympics’ signature competitions since 1936. This timeless sport consists of five events – downhill, slalom, giant slalom, super-G, and combined events.
The Flagstaff Alpine Ski & Snowboard Team was founded in 1967 and trains over 180 athletes from ages eight to eighteen at the Arizona Snowbowl. The team competes in the Rocky Mountain Division of US Ski and Snowboard. The Rocky Mountain Division consists of the following states: Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, Wyoming, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Nebraska.
Families commute from all over the state and from cities as far as Phoenix, Scottsdale, and Tucson to have their juniors on this team. Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty’s CEO and co-owner, Todd Gillenwater and, his wife, Nancy Gillenwater, have twin 17-year-old daughters that have been on the team since the age of eight and are finishing their high school racing careers this winter.
This season they’ve raced downhill, super g, giant slalom, and slalom – all Olympic events. The races have been held in Loveland, Aspen, Purgatory, Colorado, and Flagstaff, Arizona. Their final season wraps up this March with Championship races in Taos, New Mexico.
When asked for takeaways from being an athlete on the Flagstaff Alpine Ski & Snowboard Team for almost all of their childhood, the Gillenwater twins said self-confidence, discipline, respect for the mountains, and how fortunate they feel to have been a part of the team and sport. These are the qualities that will define them forever.
When the Summer Olympics head to France in 2024, one of the sports continuing to gain attention and momentum is mountain biking, especially here in the Grand Canyon state. After beginning in California in the 1970s, the sport’s popularity has grown among adults and especially teens looking to tackle Arizona’s dramatic landscape and rugged terrain.
One of those young mountain biking enthusiasts’ is 14-year-old Zane Thomas of Anthem.
“I love to jump and go fast downhill,” said Zane Thomas. “I would watch videos on social media of people going to bike parks and I knew it was something I wanted to try.”
Two years ago, while still in junior high school Zane came across a post about a Mountain Biking team allowing him to join the nearby Boulder Creek High School team and compete against older students. Zane, who always had a spark for adventure and lives a little on the side of danger, didn’t waste any time. As soon as he arrived at the first practice with a bike a helmet and he was ready to go.
“He was practicing three days a week during summer vacation waking before the sun is up to try and beat the heat. His new coaches were welcoming and so encouraging,” said Mom, Jennifer Thomas.
Unfortunately, that year the Arizona Cycling Association’s season was canceled due to COVID, but the coaches continued to hold practices all season for the teams and the following January the young mountain biker joined an additional MBAA series. This was Zane’s first taste with cross country enduro racing and he fell in love.
“I am so proud of him and so happy that he finally found his passion. I am always nervous when he is on the start line knowing he will give it his all out there. He has had several crashes, and has a few battle scars to show for it, but to see the excitement in his face when he breaks another goal is the best feeling,” said Thomas.
When his school year resumed Zane was back racing with the Boulder Creek team and he was so excited to race as a Freshman for his high school. In his first year, he had a great high school season breaking all of his personal goals and ending with the State Championship in Sierra Vista, Arizona. His teammate Gabe Harrelson won the State Championship that year. Zane has now started his second MBAA racing series in January and this time as a Junior Racer for Exhale Bikes Inc.
Even though he’s just 14-years-old he’s currently racing with 15-and-16-year-olds. With northern and southern divisions, his mom says she is still shocked how popular mountain biking has become in Arizona and how many high schools across the state have teams and races on the weekends.
“Race weekends are full of energy and so much fun. The families of the teammates gather in large pit areas as races commence all day,” said Jennifer Thomas. “The teammates support each other at the start and finish line. It is a great group of kids and the families have been so warm and welcoming.”
Zane Thomas loves watching his fellow team members and Red Bull’s professional riders. He hopes to ride like them all one day and his mom hopes he continues doing what he loves.
“It is not always about getting to the podium, but doing what makes you happy. If he is happy then we are happy. I know there are scholarships available and opportunities to travel with this sport. If this is something he decides to do, we are 100% behind him,” she said.
I am so proud of him and so happy that he finally found his passion. I am always nervous when he is on the start line knowing he will give it his all out there. He has had several crashes, and has a few battle scars to show for it, but to see the excitement in his face when he breaks another goal is the best feeling. It is not always about getting to the podium, but doing what makes you happy. If he is happy then we are happy.
Jennifer Thomas, MOM
Looking to get your young mountain biker into competing?
Check out the Arizona Cycling Association’s website for more information on the races and resources for Arizona Mountain Bikers arizonacycling.org or nationalmtb.org.
Arizona’s leading luxury brokerage now holds the records for the first, second and third highest residential sales in Arizona per the MLS
Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty is proud to announce the $21.5 million dollar sale of a French inspired Italian estate in the Upper Canyon of Silverleaf in Scottsdale, Arizona. This is now the 2nd highest residential sale in the state of Arizona per the Multiple Listing Service (MLS). Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty currently holds the records for first, second and third highest residential sales in Arizona according to MLS.
The buyers, a retired couple from the San Francisco Bay Area, said they chose to relocate to the Grand Canyon state in search of a better way of life. With a new found love of Arizona’s culture, wildlife and beauty, the couple selected the home because of the quality and detail in the home combined with the views, location in Silverleaf and the reputation of the builder drew them to the property.
Outside, sophistically detailed stone carvings surround the exterior of the home with varying window shapes and designs to give the estate a grand look. The immaculate and beautiful French inspired details continue inside with soaring ceilings, custom arches and chandeliers, intricate marble, stone and brickwork throughout and beautifully designed rooms for entertaining with the finest amenities. Inside the main house of the estate, the home features 5 luxurious designed bedrooms and 6 ½ bathrooms. The separate detached guest home also offers another 2 custom designed bedrooms and 2 bathrooms with its own kitchen, offering guests first-class accommodations.
Ginger and I along with our son Barry Van Patten II were honored to represent the buyers on this one-of-a-kind, masterpiece of a home. It is very satisfying to us that both buyers and sellers are extremely happy with the outcome.
Barry Van Patten
Within 3 days after listing the buyers’ first Silverleaf home, Van Patten shares the home went under contract.
This sale was an incredible achievement in Scottsdale, Arizona selling at over $1,700+/sqft. From designing/building this property to representing our clients in this transaction to the new owners, we couldn’t be more pleased with all of the parties involved in this smooth transition.
Any food aficionado dreams of a chef’s kitchen to prepare exquisite dishes and entertain friends and family. Plenty of preparation space, top-notch appliances and even butler’s kitchens show up in the top residential kitchens in luxury homes. Create restaurant-quality meals in the comfort of your own home in a gorgeous culinary kitchen.
Whether cooking for one, two or thirty, Arizona’s top estates, listed by Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty’s team of expert agents, will have just what you need. Thoughtful design creates spaces that allow for expert navigation throughout the cooking process, and some feature outdoor kitchens that complement the interior spaces for cooking year-round.
Whether you’re searching for a modern, open kitchen, a grandiose traditional kitchen or a cozy Southwestern style, these ICONIC Estates will impress any chef de cuisine.
Experience the many flavors of culinary kitchens in this month’s ICONIC Estates!
Prominent racecar driver Kevin Buckler crosses the finish line to victory creating award-winning wines at his Adobe Road Winery. Buckler and his wife, Debra, launched Adobe Road in 2002, and today the winery produces a large variety of wines, many awarded 90 points or more. The winery purchases grapes from several vineyards throughout Sonoma County and was named Adobe Road in honor of the road in. Petaluma on which he first purchased fruit. Whether behind the wheel of a car or behind the scenes creating a Cabernet blend, Buckler continues to push boundaries and win with Adobe Road Winery.
As part of our exclusive relationship with Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty, ICONIC LIFE takes you along on a tour of an incredible Italian villa inspired by the ICONIC Getty Villa outside of Rome. This beautiful home, designed by Juan Sandoval,is nearly 52,000 square feet under roof. The designer had every element custom-made and carved on site. See incredible marble floors, a 2,000-bottle wine cellar, a secret passageway, grand ballroom and more! This home is represented by Cheryl Anderson.
In recent years the dining scene in the Valley of the Sun has elevated to the point that the culinary delights in the desert regularly draw the epicurious traveler. But many are surprised that the top table in town is the hotel restaurant at the Sheraton Grand Resort at Wild Horse Pass.
Not only is Kai Restaurant one of the city’s best fine dining establishments, but it’s also the only Forbes Five Star and AAA Five Diamond restaurant in the state. Even more interesting, it’s the only fine dining Native American restaurant in the world. We so encourage you to check it out.
Ascent at The Phoenician® is unveiling the design for The Summit Rooftop Terrace at its new luxury condominium building, which will offer 360-degree views of the Valley and Camelback Mountain.
Designed uniquely for the Ascent mountainside condominium owners, residents will enjoy their own private rooftop community terrace featuring soft seating, fire tables, multiple gathering spaces, and an activity lawn in addition to the dramatic views.
Ascent at The Phoenician® is situated at the base of Camelback Mountain, overlooking The Phoenician® Golf Course and located adjacent to The Phoenician®, a Luxury Collection Resort in Scottsdale, Arizona. Ascent at The Phoenician® recently released an intimate residential building of 40 luxury condominiums on Camelback Mountain consisting of one-bedroom plus den, two-bedroom, two-bedroom plus den, and three-bedroom plus den plans. Prices are estimated to range from $1.5 million up to $5 million.
With the dramatic views of the Valley during the day and city lights at night all set right on Camelback Mountain, the mountainside residences are generating strong interest for their spectacular panorama. Ascent at The Phoenician offers an extraordinary way of life at Scottsdale’s most coveted location on Camelback Mountain.
Todd Patrick, Vice President of Sales and marketing
The mountainside condominium residences follow the early sales success of the Ascent Golf Villas, which Ascent began selling in mid-February. The Golf Villas include homes ranging from two-bedroom to three-bedroom plus den/office plans, extensive indoor-outdoor living, private two-car garages, and views of both the golf course and Camelback Mountain. Current prices range from $2.16 million up to $3.195 million. Construction of the Golf Villas is now underway.
The mountainside condominium residences will enjoy a prime location adjacent to the Mountain Club, a private club for owners at Ascent. Programs, amenities and private events at the Club will celebrate the iconic Camelback Mountain and will include a private pool, fitness and movement rooms, social spaces and demonstration kitchen for cooking classes and private chef experiences. Architecturally designed as a modern interpretation of the historic Jokake Inn on The Phoenician® grounds, the Mountain Club will be an intimate gathering place for connection, wellness, celebration and relaxation.
Ascent at The Phoenician® residents will have a connection through the cactus garden to all of The Phoenician® hotel’s restaurants. Also, residents will have the opportunity to join the Phoenician® Amenity Access Program that provides Ascent real estate owners with access to resort amenities, including the pools and fitness facility and preferred pricing for golf, spa, food and beverage, and other services.
With more than $2 billion of real estate projects in planning and development, Replay has properties in some of the world’s most sought-after settings. The team for Replay’s condominium residences and Golf Villas includes design partners from the Valley’s best internationally recognized talent: Nelsen Partners, an architecture and planning firm founded in 1990; Vallone Design, a leading, full-service interior design firm specializing in exquisite residential and commercial interior design; Floor Associates, a landscape architecture and planning firm; and bulthaup Scottsdale, a globally recognized company producing premium kitchens custom-made in Germany.
Joe Bushong and Leslie Jenkins of Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty are the listing agents for Ascent at The Phoenician®. For more information on the remaining Golf Villa homes or to register for updates including Priority Registration for the first release of mountainside condominium residences visit ascentatthephoenician.com or call 480-534-4086.
TheRuss Lyon Foundationis bringing back their Love Your Neighbors campaign to raise money for the Arizona Housing Fund. In 2020 $5,290 was raised. The sale is happening now and only runs through Sunday, August 22, 2021.
The Love Your Neighbors apparel is being produced by local company SideBar and just $20. New to the 2021 lineup is the apparel coming in a stonewashed blue-gray color option, women’s v-neck, unisex tank and bandana. They are available online, click here.
Every item ordered benefits the Arizona Housing Fund (AZHF). AZHF is a dedicated and sustainable revenue source that grants funding to the nonprofit agencies that build and operate Permanent Supportive, Low-Income and Working Poor Housing. Its equity grants will enable more housing units to be constructed, meeting the growing needs of our communities in Arizona with the goal of reducing homelessness.
There has never been a more important time for everyone to come together and support the Arizona Housing Fund. This foundation gives families a fighting chance to stay in their homes and helps others find housing.
Betsy Dickinson, President of Russ Lyon FOundation
The Russ Lyon Foundation seeks to provide valuable and meaningful service work within communities as well as charitable investments. Since the foundation began in 2014, more than $500,000 has been contributed towards various 501c3 Arizona-based organizations through direct donations, matching funds, sponsorships, and fundraisers.
The Noble Vision World Premiere Concert will be held on Saturday, August 7th, 2021 at 5:30 pm and at Coconino Community College which is located 2800 S Lone Tree Rd in Flagstaff.
70 members of the Flagstaff Community Band are currently rehearsing for the performance.
Among those is a musically gifted saxophone player named Paula Mack.
The Flagstaff resident has been playing the saxophone for 20 years and shares her time between playing for the Flagstaff Community Band and working as a REALTOR for Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty. Mack, who works out of the brokerage’s Flagstaff Office is excited to perform with the Flagstaff Community Band in the upcoming Noble Vision World Premiere Concert.
“I am extremely proud to be a part of such a talented group of musicians,” explains Paula Mack of Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty, and member of the Flagstaff Community Band, “The Flagstaff Community Band has dedicated a tremendous amount of time and effort to put together a beautiful ensemble, and this composition will be especially special to the Dark Skies Flagstaff area.”
Noble Vision is a commission composed by Patrick J. Burns and celebrates the life and contributions of Percival Lowell, the astronomer who founded the Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff. Lowell Observatory is an astronomical observatory and was established in 1894, placing it among the oldest observatories in the United States. It was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1965. This observatory is also known for discovering the dwarf planet Pluto.
The Flagstaff Community Band has chosen to honor Lowell with this commission to highlight this special part of the state. The observatory provided inspiration for the theme of the music and offered room for the composer’s creativity when writing the piece. The composer, Patrick Burns, in learning much more about Lowell Observatory, liked the grandness of very simply drawing attention to the work of Percival Lowell and the boundaries that he pushed through his thoughts, studies, and eventually discoveries.
Summer is in full swing, and there’s nothing better than diving into a refreshing, cool pool! In fact, in Arizona, a pool is not just a beautiful luxury, but a necessity. Not surprisingly, 6 of the Top 10 Cities in the US for Swimming Pools are in Arizona. In the desert, nothing is more beautiful than a sparkling swimming pool in the backyard.
Arizona’s top estates feature resort-style swimming pools with all the best amenities. From lazy rivers to infinity edges, luxury spas and water-park-style slides, you can find beautiful Pristine Pools throughout the Valley, Northern Arizona and in the Tucson region.
Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty has a talented team of luxury lifestyle professionals across the state who can help track down the perfect home with a Pristine Pool, perfect for entertaining, hosting parties and relaxing with family! Plus, pools complement the architectural features of the home and provide a focal point for the landscape.
Dive into these Pristine Pools featured in this month’s ICONIC Estates!
James Beard award-winning Chef Christopher Gross is leading a new chapter at the Wrigley Mansion in Phoenix. He’s reimagined this classic venue as the new home for fine French dining in the Valley with his newest version of Christopher’s restaurant—an ICONIC culinary experience in the making. Christopher’s is the restaurant Chef Gross has dreamed about opening for years. Check out his stunning venue and menu.
Ascent at The Phoenician, developed by Replay Destinations, is introducing 40 luxury living condominium residences—set to break ground in fall 2021—following the early sales success of its golf villas, introduced earlier this year.
Ascent came to be when The Phoenician recently deaccessioned a nine-hole golf course. “We are the master developers of this gated, 25-acre community,” explains Todd Patrick, Replay Destinations’ vice president of sales and marketing. “Part of it will include single-family homes built by Cullum Homes and the rest will be the luxury living golf villas and condominiums.”
The condominium residences will range from one-bedroom-plus-den to three-bedroom-plus-den floor plans, with current prices set from $1.5 million to $5 million. Joe Bushong and Leslie Jenkins of Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty are the listing agents.
Summer is the best time of year for grilling, and with all of the delicious marinade recipes and grilling tips out there, it is the perfect time to show off your proverbial chops using some incredible grilling accessories.
Grilling can seem like equal parts art and science, and grill masters know to trust their intuition when it comes to making delicious meals on the barbecue. However, technology has enabled us to take some of the guesswork out of grilling—making our fave dishes come out great every time.
Whether you are new to grilling or are a seasoned pro, some tips, tricks and gadgets can help you get the best results.
The New Darlings have 460k+ followers on Instagram and a wholesome family and lifestyle blog. Christina, Robert, and Oliver Martinez’s memories are recorded and featured on the blog, including the remodeling journey of their Phoenix home.
The enchanting home is a 1930 Tudor in the historic Brentwood neighborhood of Central Phoenix. The property received a complete overhaul from its current owners, no surface untouched, no idea left undone.
We spent so much time and energy to find a harmony between beauty and functionality for our home. We are sad to be leaving this house but we are excited to find new owners that will appreciate it as much as we do.
The 1,846 square foot main house is home to 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms and is listed at $700,000 by Michelle Renteria of Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty.
Upon entering the light-filled, opulent home, guests are greeted by smooth plaster walls, gorgeous hardwood floors, double archways leading into the stunning kitchen, and a dining space overlooking the lush backyard and guest house. The home’s garden-chic interior compliments the desert surroundings.
The expansive owner’s suite boasts vaulted ceilings, skylights, and a massive walk-in closet complete with laundry, French doors to the patio, and a lovely en-suite bathroom with a soaking tub, dual sinks, and stall shower.
The secondary bedroom and hall bath embrace historic details and charm while providing owners with modernized windows, closet system, and updated lighting and hardware.
The 200 square foot guest house provides the perfect space for out-of-town guests and is complete with a private bathroom, kitchenette, storage, and a private patio.
The remodel was completed in 2018 by Loyal Construction Co. and Ron Elliot Studios. It expanded the footprint of the home and included a full owner’s suite remodel as well as a kitchen, dining, and back patio re-imagination.
This is truly one of the most wonderful and thoughtful homes I have had the pleasure of listing. Robert and Christina have poured their talents into this home and have made it very special. A home this enchanting and modern in the beautiful Brentwood Historic District will not be on the market for long.