The best residential architects and designers in the Phoenix metro area, whether they are building a sprawling luxury mansion in Scottsdale or remodeling a classic ranch home or midcentury bungalow in a downtown neighborhood, are focused on getting along with the desert environment rather than fighting against it. This is a relatively new concept in the urban Southwest, and one that has captivated a new generation of thinkers and makers here. The architects on this list are all taking chances and going beyond the typical to create new traditions, new hybrids, and a new way of living in the desert. Many of these architects have created completely modern, nontraditional homes that fit well into the landscape, and they have received attention from professionals in the field for their innovation.
The Phoenix metropolitan area’s skyline has long been crowded with construction cranes, and the desert mega-city often leads the nation in population growth. But even before the shock of the Great Recession, which hit the construction-reliant metro area hard, architectects in Phoenix were on the leading edge of the international movement toward sustainable and green design. In recent years this movement has exploded with new energy and new ideas, leading to the ongoing revitalization and reimagining of the city’s downtown, and an epochal shift in the way architects and builders think about the desert’s challenges and gifts.
Design-build firms offer one-stop shopping, giving their clients one point of contact for all the issues that are bound to pop up throughout the life of a construction project, whether it’s a relatively small remodel, a sprawling resort in the hills, or a complicated industrial facility. In the Phoenix metro area, where construction is a major driver of the economy, there are design-build firms that can imagine and realize projects of any size and scope, and the best ones use the design-build model not only to save their clients time and money, but also because they want to see their unique vision through from beginning to end. The firms on this list are exceptional due to their designs, accolades, and the size of their work.
The Phoenix metropolitan area includes the upscale resort towns of Scottsdale and Paradise Valley, so there are ample opportunities for architects and designers to work on high-end and high-concept restaurant projects. There are also a lot of opportunities to make trendy and innovative new spaces out of the old structures in Phoenix’s revitalizing downtown and central neighborhoods. The firms on this list are doing a bit of everything, from making unique restuarants out of a wide variety of old structures, to creating some of the valley’s hippest new hangouts in Scottsdale. Their work has garnered them awards and recognition in the press, in trade magazines, and in architectural competitions.
Phoenix has in recent years made strides in rediscovering, remodeling, and remaking its urban neighborhoods and creating a more sustainable future. This renaissance, along with the city’s young and educated workforce, is attracting innovative new companies. Many of the best office and workspaces in Phoenix are designed by architects interested in local traditions, local history, and a sustainable future. Increasingly Phoenix, Tempe, and other parts of the metro area are appearing on the radar of large corporations looking for new headquarters, tech-startups looking for talent and affordable workspaces — or even “anti-offices” — and creative entrepreneurs looking for the future. These are the architects helping them redefine work and workspaces, ranked according to such factors as longevity in the business, award-winning design, and scope of clientele.
Contemporary interior design in the Phoenix metro area and around the Southwest has escaped the chains of regionalism, and you’ll rarely see a howling coyote or Kokopelli motif anymore in the upscale custom homes, restaurants, hotels, and offices of Scottsdale, Paradise Valley, and downtown Phoenix. Interior designers in Phoenix are forging a new, more urban, youthful, and edgy path, while also mixing traditional regional styles into new and thrilling amalgams. The designers on this list are all visionary artists with something new to say about the way we live, work, and play in the desert. They help homeowners create spaces that speak to their individual sentiments, furnishing their oases in whatever style speaks to their heart. These designers are industry professionals who have a steady list of clientele and raving reviews.