By Tommy Acosta
Sedona, AZ (October 25, 2016) There are those who would look at a broken cup, see no value in it and without a second thought, throw it into the trash. Then there are those who would look at the same broken cup, see it’s potential, glue it back together, paint it and turn it into a work of art. Such is the case with Thomas McPherson of the Fenix Private Capital Group L.L.C, who saw the potential of what was formerly called Tequa Plaza in the Village of Oak Creek and with the support of the Sedona Village Business Association (SBVA), local artisans. innovative tenant’s shops and boutiques, collectively are creating a work of art.
From the ashes of stagnation and disrepair Thomas turned the plaza into the magical indoor/outdoor cultural, art, wellness, shopping and dining center it has become today; a must visit world-class Arizona destination point for travelers and locals alike.
Changing the name of the plaza to The Collective Sedona, pouring millions of dollars into the revitalization of the center which only one year ago appeared to be on the verge of economic collapse, Thomas and his team have breathed new life into it.
Where once many plaza stores, restaurants and venues were struggling, The Collective Sedona is now becoming a thriving cultural and shopping center boasting more than 31 shops, galleries, wineries, breweries, great restaurants, spas, event venue space, a 13,500-square foot entertainment plaza for events like Farmer’s Market’s, concerts, festivals and performances; and yes, even a bank.
When Thomas first saw the property, it did not take him long to buy it in August of 2015.
“I saw an amazing potential to improve a blighted center in a wonderful community,” he said. “Lack of care on the previous owner’s part was a major challenge. The property had significant amounts of deferred maintenance and a bad reputation as a ‘center that just never made it.’ Looking beyond the challenges I saw a vibrant community center with a focus on art, dining, shopping, health & wellness and events with lots of local cultural significance.”
He said his group spent a significant amount of money and even more time reaching out to the community to show its potential.
“Once people started seeing it come together they really got behind us,” he said.
“We pride ourselves on supporting great local businesses, hosting world-class events like The Sedona Yoga Fest… and we have amazing views of the red rocks from the entire property. The Collective Sedona is going to become one of Northern Arizona’s premier cultural destinations. We have some of the finest restaurants, shopping, art galleries and events in the state. I am looking forward to the continued economic development of the Village of Oak Creek and the Greater Sedona area. This part of Arizona is such a beautiful place to live, visit, and enjoy.”
Nina Joy Rizzo, vice-president of the Sedona Village Business Association, has been tirelessly working with McPherson and all of the businesses in the center to make that vision come true through her organization’s unfaltering and solid support.
Dedicated to furthering the general business interests of merchants, businesses and professionals in the Village of Oak Creek area, the SVBA plans to sponsor numerous cultural events in the Village and at the center, the most recent being the fund-raising Oktoberfest Celebration organized by SVBA Secretary Robin Amanda Kelley.
“As vice-president of The Sedona Village Business Association and on behalf of our organization and wonderful community, I’d like to say we are so excited with the grand opening of The Collective Sedona here in the Village of Oak Creek,” said Nina Joy. “We have no doubt The Collective Sedona will soon become a world-class destination point for those visiting the Southwest. World famous Chef Lisa Dahl and one of her four fabulous restaurant’s, Cucina Rustica, is located in The Collective. Cucina has carried the ball and has remained packed each and every evening for fine dining. Guitar legend Anthony Mazzella plays in the courtyard for various events. We’ve had dance parties going into the wee morning hours with Dexx Negron, at Vista Hall. Historic Brewery is open in the evening along with JWine Bistro now, too. Woo Hoo! We Have A Nightlife in the VOC. Finally! It is a fresh new energy of younger thinking and younger minds, collectively! We are magic and it’s happening now.”
The SVBA is looking for volunteers and anyone interested in doing so can contact Nina Joy Rizzo at 602-481-8086 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
For most visitors driving into Sedona their path takes them through the Village of Oak Creek and they must pass The Collective Sedona on their way in.
The center is now being referred to as the “Gateway to Sedona” and it is most definitely living up to that description as the sense of its vibrancy and beauty continue to grow.
Sedona Mayor Sandy Moriarty believes The Collective Sedona will greatly benefit all of Greater Sedona and draw even more visitors to Red Rock Country, something all stakeholders in the city’s economy can appreciate.
“I have watched The Collective with great interest as it has been transformed over the last year or so,” the mayor said. “The space has tremendous potential and is now coming into its own as a very vibrant multifunctional place. As I have noted before, I believe that the residents of the Verde Valley have much to gain from taking a regional approach. In my nearly 45 years as a Sedona resident, I have participated throughout the Verde Valley in many different organizations, both forming friendships and building working relationships to accomplish meaningful goals. We can do so much more by working together. And for Sedona, our closest regional partners are the parts of our community just outside our borders: the Big Park region, Oak Creek Canyon, the Loop road, and the residences accessed by Dry Creek Road, including the Enchantment Resort.”
She said city boundaries are irrelevant when it comes to the area’s benefit.
“The economic development and artistic, educational and cultural opportunities in the Big Park area will benefit all of us, regardless of where the city limits are,” the mayor said. “The same is true of the other areas already mentioned, as well as in all the other areas of the Verde Valley, incorporated or unincorporated. City boundaries do have consequences but are not important when it comes to being part of the community we all love.”
She said the center would draw even more people to Greater Sedona and provide benefits for locals as well.
“I believe The Collective will draw more visitors to the area as it continues to develop and mature,” she said. “I see this as nothing but a positive, as it will only make our community more attractive with a wider variety of options for both residents and visitors.”
Sedona Chamber of Commerce CEO Jennifer Wesselhoff also welcomes The Collective Sedona.
“The Sedona Chamber of Commerce & Tourism Bureau is very excited to welcome The Collective Sedona as a vibrant new anchor to Sedona’s excellent array of products and services,” she said. “The Collective Sedona is a great collection of diverse shops and galleries, health spa (with an innovative salt room), meeting space, restaurants, tasting rooms and inviting open space – all in a fantastic location, the gateway to the red rocks.”
She said the center is creating a new spirit for the Village of Oak Creek area.
“Thomas McPherson, the owner of the facility, has brought the spark back to the VOC (Village of Oak Creek) and his dynamic spirit is contagious,” she said. “We believe that The Collective Sedona will strengthen our community’s unique character by embracing our distinctive arts and cultural heritage, wellness attributes and overall positive energy. We know our community is stronger when we work together in cooperation and partnerships, not only improving the vitality and prosperity of the region but creating a greater sense of community as well. We are looking forward to promoting, assisting and building upon the efforts The Collective Sedona to create a refreshed vibrant economy for the entire community.
She said the Sedona Chamber of Commerce would do its part to keep the spirit growing.
“Congratulations to all the new and expanded businesses located at The Collective Sedona,” she said. “We are looking forward to helping you grow, prosper and build economic wealth for the area.”
Visit the Collective Sedona located at 7000 S.R. 179, Sedona AZ 86351 and see for yourself what the buzz is about. The vibrancy can’t be denied and the future shines bright for this wonderful new center of opportunity, celebration, fun, health and art.
For more information visit thesedonacollective.com. or call 928-255-0900.