Originally settled by the Hohokam people over 2,000 years ago, Phoenix is unique for its system of man-made canals and irrigation, which have fostered a lasting and robust agricultural trade that anchors the city’s fortunes. The area has seen no shortage of hardship—to be sure—but each time, from the American Civil War to the Great Recession, Phoenix as a city has risen from the ashes, stronger than ever.
While the city remained something of a desert oasis up through the Second World War, it’s enjoyed massive and explosive growth over the last few decades. It was growing by roughly 25% on an annual basis prior to 2007 (making it second-fastest behind only Las Vegas), and has recovered from the crisis in trademark Phoenix fashion. Even the city’s roughest neighborhoods have begun to stabilize and offer enticing opportunities to incoming job-seekers and families.
And many of those incoming home buyers are actually looking to the city’s diverse offering of high-end condos instead of traditional single-family homes. With panoramic views of the desert out below and premium access to the best neighborhoods, Scottsdale and the city, the local condo market is growing fast.
It’s the perfect way to enjoy the otherworldly desert paradise that is Phoenix, Arizona …
Once and Always a Phoenix
From day one, the City Fathers and residents have always known they were dealing with something special. That’s why the city was named “Phoenix” in the first place, since it described a city born from the ruins of a previous civilization … in this case the Hohokam Indians who carved out the Canals that made the city habitable originally.
But the name would prove to be great luck for a city that went on to endure so many changes and challenges in the decades ahead. Out there in the surreal desert—where the stars grow brighter and the air is just different—the people of Phoenix have seen everything from massive public works to explosive wartime industry … but they’ve always persevered in keeping with the city’s history and heritage.
And the city’s hard-working but fiercely individualistic attitude has led to plenty of political personalities who’ve achieved major national acclaim—from Sheriff Joe Arpaio to Sandra Day O’Connor, the country’s first female Supreme Court Judge.
The result is a panorama of hard-won urban sophistication and no shortage of Southwestern pride … a cornucopia of sun-soaked resort hotels, high-end spas, and awesome major league sports. The Phoenix we all know and love today is a sprawling and surprisingly natural kind of metropolis that is at the same time indulgent and never too ostentatious.
Natural Beauty, Rich Culture and Beautiful Weather
While Phoenix enjoys an exciting downtown scene with plenty of nightlife alternatives, the city’s greatest asset is probably its picturesque natural surroundings, with views of sparse desert vegetation and pink soil set against the backdrop of majestic mountains and a glowing sunset.
This kind of simple natural beauty is on display at magnificent local parks like Desert Botanical Garden, South Mountain Park, Tom’s Thumb, or on trips led by groups like Arizona Outback Adventures.
The local Heard Museum offers a truly breathtaking amount of Native American art and cultural exhibits; offering a glimpse into the city’s eons-long heritage and the people who made the city habitable so many years ago.
While you’re out there working up an appetite, don’t forget about restaurants like Kai, the world’s only five-diamond Native American eatery, with its unbelievable cuisine and exquisite views of South Mountain … or Elements at Sanctuary Resort, a restaurant run by Food Network’s Beau MacMillan.
From the city’s spectacular architectural tradition—with contributions from greats like Frank Lloyd Wright—to its healthy tourist industry and long list of exciting events and festivals, Phoenix has no shortage of fun and excitement for residents and visitors alike …
Phoenix’s Bright New Fortunes
Thanks to the city’s wealth of arable farmland, Phoenix has for centuries enjoyed a stable economic foundation on what’s called the “5 C’s” (Cattle, Copper, Climate, Cotton and Citrus), but these days it’s evolving into something much greater …
For the past twenty years, Phoenix has consistently ranked as one of the fastest-growing economies in the United States. Home to four Fortune 500 companies and thriving local businesses in everything from Aerospace to Hospitality and Education, the Phoenix Metro Area has a Gross Product of well over $200 Billion.
And it’s growing more every day as new niches sprout up. Since 2002, for example, the city has added new jobs in the healthcare and bioscience fields at three times the national average rate.
There’s also a substantial military presence in the city—home to Luke Air Force Base and Luke Field, with several more major bases during the city’s military prime back in the 1940s. That means a substantial government contribution to the economy; measured at $18.9 Billion back in 2012.
A Promising New Market for Condos
While many of America’s new markets for high-end condos are content just to dip their toes in the water, Phoenix is jumping headfirst into the ultra-luxury market with projects like the Sterling at Silverleaf, a $350 million condo project with incredible amenities like an automated valet system and high-tech home fixtures.
It’s honestly a perfect fit for Phoenix—a city beloved for its golfing and natural excursions, where indulgent spa treatments and resort-style accommodations have long been a fixture.
It’s also a good way to escape the urban sprawl of larger cities like Phoenix and Jacksonville—according to a few couples who recently sold their homes in favor of new condos in and around the Scottsdale area.
Whether you’re looking for more peace-of-mind during long trips away from home, or just easier access to amenities that might otherwise be all the way across town, a nice Phoenix condo could be well worth it.