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Inside the Minds of Scottsdale Architects & Arizona's Architectural Scene

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Three Scottsdale Architects on Designing Arizona’s Architectural Dreamscape

Uncover the fascinating world where innovation and aesthetics converge as we delve into the minds of renowned architects shaping Arizona’s architectural renaissance.

Join us as we step into the world where vision meets structure, creativity blends with functionality and design transcends boundaries. ICONIC LIFE Publisher Renee Dee sat down for an episode of ICONIC HOUR with a trio of brilliant Scottsdale-based architects, Mark Candelaria, Brent Kendle and C.P. Drewett to discuss how they got their start, their biggest influences and the current Phoenix architecture renaissance.

These visionary minds have left an undeniable mark on the landscape or Arizona’s architectural scene with their unrivaled passion and unwavering commitment. Thanks to their creative visions and meticulous attention to detail, these three creators breathe life into spaces and in the realm of home building, architecture truly serves as the foundation and guiding force that sets the stage for turning a house into a home.

ICONIC Hour: Architectural Case Study

Interestingly enough, all three of them shared the sentiment that architecture discovered them, rather than the other way around, underscoring their inherent passion for the craft. Kendle’s admiration for Frank Lloyd Wright sparked at a young age, igniting a lifelong pursuit of blending traditional craftsmanship with cutting-edge technology to create modern masterpieces. 

“When I was about ten years old, my mother opened a Frank Lloyd Wright book that she had when she was in college and honestly, at about the third or fourth page into that book, I kinda knew what I was going to do,” Kendle says. 

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Photo courtesy of Kendle Design

Candelaria’s architectural interest blossomed through childhood experiences with LEGO and Lincoln Logs. As a child, his mother would take him along to look at model homes and he would build replicas of those homes once he got home. Fast forward to now and he’s not only the founder and principal of his own firm, Candelaria Design, but also an award-winning architect. 

Photo courtesy of Candelaria Design

For Drewett, architecture became an integral part of his life during his nomadic upbringing in a military family. With his family relocating frequently, he and his father took on the role of “fix and flipper” and would also build furniture together which instilled in him a creative mindset and appreciation for intricate details. Drewett is now the owner and president of Drewett Works where he works to bring his visions to life each day.

And while it can be left unsaid, if you have any one of these three powerhouses on your home project, it’s guaranteed to be breathtaking and awe-inspiring, but there’s a lot more to the architect’s role than a creative mind. 

Werner Segarra Photography

“There’s just a myriad of decisions that have to be made [when it comes to a project], and I think that building a custom home can be just overwhelming and intimidating to a lot of people,” Kendle explains. “A good architect is going to help make [the] journey a lot more enjoyable and I think the architect tends to usually also become quarterback of the team.” Having an architect also means having someone who can collaborate with the designers, builders and landscape architects to make sure the project is as cohesive as possible. 

Being architects also demands staying attuned to trends and embracing the evolving architectural landscape. Drewett acknowledges the transformative shift Phoenix has experienced in recent years, transitioning from a developer-driven state to one that values architectural excellence. Kendle reflects on the past, yearning for exceptional architecture that was once scarce in the region. 

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However, with a diverse client base encompassing both locals and out-of-state residents, the architects now find inspiration in new ways. The Phoenix architectural renaissance is in full swing, thanks to the availability of skilled craftsmen and contractors, as Kendle aptly compares it to the Renaissance era, with a wealth of local talent.

In addition to their personal experiences and interests, the trio of architects also draw inspiration from the unique landscape and climate of Arizona. The abundant sunshine and natural beauty of the desert provide a backdrop for their designs that is unmatched in other parts of the country. From the rugged mountains to the vast expanses of cactus and the ICONIC sunsets, the Arizona landscape offers a wealth of inspiration for their creative visions. By incorporating elements of the environment into their designs, they create homes that are not only stunningly beautiful but also uniquely suited to the region. 

In a realm where architecture meets lifestyle, these three have proven themselves to be true visionaries. With every project they undertake, they continue to shape the architectural landscape of Phoenix, leaving a lasting legacy of beauty, innovation and functionality.

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