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A Week in the Life of a Downtown Phoenix Urbanista

by Quinn Tempest
Uncategorized Quinn Tempest May 13, 2020

Hello there! My name is Quinn Tempest, and I like to call myself a Phoenix “urbanista” because my whole life revolves around working, playing, and connecting in #DTPHX. The art is vibrant, the food is tasty, the community is strong, and I love being able to get around by bike or foot. Here’s a glimpse into a week in my life in Downtown Phoenix. For even more photos and daily inspiration, give me a follow on the Gram!

Monday

I like to ease into the work week slowly, keeping my Mondays relatively calm. I’m lucky enough to be able to work from home, running my creative coaching and consulting business from my upstairs office – ahem, desk! In our loft-style condo, there are no real rooms, and my workspace takes up a little sliver of space along the railing, which you can see in the photo below. I wouldn’t have it any other way!

Quinn Tempest entrepreneur

Our historic building was first built in the 1920’s as an apartment building and converted to loft condo’s in the early 2000s. Photo: Taylor Bellais

I call it my “treehouse office,” because on either side, I can look out to see the lush foliage that surrounds our building. You may recognize our sidewalk – it seems to be Insta-famous these days!

Quinn and Ryan Tempest Downtown Phoenix

We love living in thie Historic Roosevelt Neighborhood – Phoenix’s first “suburb!” It’s lush, walkable, and community-oriented. Photo: Aaron Kes

Speaking of our home, I live in my dream space! My husband and I have lived in the Roosevelt Historic Neighborhood for years as renters, so when an opportunity to buy a home popped up, it was a no-brainer. We’re here for the long haul! Plus, we are both car-free (6+ years now!) so the proximity of our home to the light rail and bike lanes — not to the mention the 88 Walk Score – was essential.

We live in a historic building that was converted to loft-style condos in the early 2000s. Inside and out, it is super unique and feels more reminiscent of New York-style lofts than anything I’ve seen in Phoenix. Combining my more bohemian, eclectic aesthetic with my husband’s love of clean, modern design, our styles have come together to make a very cozy (and plant-filled!) home.

Tuesday

Tuesday means the week is really off to the races!

I take the opportunity to get right into the core of Downtown by bike, whether it’s to pick up groceries at Fry’s (I have handy bike pannier bags that help me tote everything), to work at a cafe like Serafina Coffee Roasters (I recommend their golden latté), or take a lunch break in Civic Space Park when it’s nice out.

Quinn Tempest Biking

Biking is my main mode of transportation around Downtown Phoenix and traipsing through Civic Space Park is my route to the core. (Photo: Vienna Glenn)

I’m also a member of the board of directors for Downtown Phoenix Inc., representing local residents. Being an active part of the community leadership that is shaping #DTPHX is something that both my husband and I take pride in. Many years ago, we co-founded a blog called This Could Be PHX with the goal of engaging the community around what they wanted to see for the future of Downtown.

I’m happy to say that a lot of what we all envisioned back then has come to fruition since, and although we’re no longer active with our blog and group, we’re still engaged and Downtown Phoenix has become a place I call home proudly.

Wednesday

Since I do work from home, I tend to use local cafes and coffee shops as my “third place.” Lola is close to me so I’m there a lot, so much so that they know my drink order… I’m that person!

I really love planning my in-person meetings here because of the beautiful and quiet back patio. Lola and this patio is where the whole neighborhood seems to come during the day, so I can’t go there without seeing at least one or two friendly faces I know.

Although Phoenix is the fifth largest city in the country, Downtown Phoenix sure feels like a small town. And I love it for exactly that reason.

Quinn Tempest cafe

Community and connection is a big part of why I live here, so coffee shops like Lola and other “third places” are my frequent haunts. (Photo: Sierra LaDuke)

Thursday

By Thursday, I’m ready to mix up my working environment! I head over to my co-working space, The McKinley Club, in the Grand Avenue Arts District area. It is filled with light, beautiful spaces, and creative humans. For someone who works alone most of the time, being part of this community is a breath of fresh air. And who doesn’t love weekly happy hours with wine and beer on tap?!

Working from home has its perks, but so does being part of a co-working space like the light-filled, stylish McKinley Club. (Photo: Delight in the Desert)

While I’m over in the area, I usually like to swing over to Cha Cha’s Tea Lounge. I’m a tea fiend so this charming little spot is my haven! I typically love to get their lavender tea latté and sit on their colorful chairs outside to watch the passersby.

quinn tempest business

Cha Cha’s Tea Lounge is the perfect haven for good tea and people watching amidst the colorful Grand Avenue Arts District. (Photo: Delight in the Desert)

Friday

Ah, Friday! If it’s a First Friday, you better believe I get out early and mural hunt before the crowds gather. This isn’t hyperbole when I say it: Downtown Phoenix – and Roosevelt Row specifically – has one of the best mural scenes ANYWHERE. Trust me, I’ve looked. The colors are bright and the styles are diverse, so I never ever get bored of hunting for murals and taking fun action shots in front of them!

You can’t go wrong with mural hunting on Roosevelt Row – it’s filled with color, diverse styles, and hidden alleys! (Photo: Liv in the Moment Photo)

I love to go to the alley behind The Churchill, the one that cuts north to south between Roosevelt and Garfield streets just east of First Street. It is aptly dubbed “1 ½ Street!” There you’ll find 12 colorful murals, like this one by Volar, each painted by different local artists.

Saturday

Saturday means it’s farmers market day! I like to listen to a podcast as I walk over to the Downtown Phoenix Farmers Market to grab bagels (the best can be found at the Arizona Bread Company) and fresh produce. I have been going for years, even before I lived in Downtown, and a Saturday without this ritual just doesn’t feel right!

On my way home, I typically like to wander over to The Churchill. Inside is COSAS, a tiny little boutique that has become a favorite of mine. It is filled with unique gifts and treasures from the heart of Mexico. If you go, say hi to the owner Julie, who has amazing tales of sourcing her goods from talented artisans across the country.

quinn tempest phoenix

Downtown is full of surprising delights, like this colorful, creative sidewalk in the Grand Avenue Arts District, a perfect stroll for your weekend. (Photo: Delight in the Desert)

In the evening, my husband and I enjoy walking down to Crescent Ballroom to catch a live flamenco music and dance performance by Flamenco Por La Vida. Best of all, it’s free!. We can never resist a classic bean and cheese burrito (they’re so tasty!) and a glass of sangria while we watch before we head up to the outdoor mezzanine to take in the city lights at night.

Sunday

Sundays are a day for adventure! I feel like many people don’t know about the hidden gem we have just south of Downtown: the Rio Salado! This habitat restoration area used to be a dry riverbed of trash but is now a beautiful space to spot over 200 bird species or to go on a bike ride or run.

Head just 15 minutes south of Downtown by bike and you’ll find the beautiful winding trails of the Rio Salado Habitat Restoration area. (Photo: Quinn Tempest)

It’s about a 15-minute bike ride from Downtown and soon, a new light rail station will stop nearby! There are beautiful trails on either side of Central Avenue to explore and you may even spot burrowing owls along the trails in the man-made artificial burrow habitats along the trail.


I hope you enjoyed a glimpse into my life in Downtown Phoenix and that you learned about a new place or two to visit! Follow along with my life and business journey over on Instagram – I can’t wait to connect with you!

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