California builder closes on new Camelback Mountain home sites

California builder closes on new Camelback Mountain home sites

Published by the Phoenix Business Journal
Author: Angela Gonzales


Ever since Host Hotel & Resorts Inc. bought the Phoenician from Starwood Hotels for about $400 million in 2015, the Maryland-based company has been working to redevelop a portion of the 300-acre property to make room for more than 300 new homes.

Host Hotels & Resorts Inc., one of the nation’s largest lodging real estate companies, has sold its first land parcel to a homebuilder as part of a larger plan to develop more than 300 homes on what was part of the golf course at the Phoenician luxury resort at the base of Camelback Mountain in Phoenix.

Walnut, California-based Shea Homes paid $17.5 million for 34 home sites.

Maryland-based Host Hotels has planned this redevelopment since buying the Phoenician in 2015 from Starwood Hotels for $400 million.

Maryland-based Host Hotels eliminated nine holes of the 27-hole golf course to pave the way for more than 300 homes, including single-family residential units like the ones Shea bought, along with condominiums and townhomes,

Ken Peterson, Shea Homes’ vice president of sales and marketing, told the Business Journal that the company will offer seven floorplans for the community with homes ranging from 2,300 to 4,000 square feet and averaging $1.5 million.

Shea Homes also will invest $1.5 million to build amenities, including a clubhouse, fitness center, pool and outdoor fire pit and gathering area.

Some homes will be on the golf course with views of Camelback Mountain, he said.

Peterson said Shea Homes was in escrow on the property for about 10 months. He expects those attracted to the homes will be move-down buyers who want to live in a lock-and-leave gated community that is situated at the doorstep of Scottsdale.

“We’ve been working on this quite some time,” he said. 

A few weeks ago, Shea Homes installed a banner on the property to announce the project.

“Within the last few weeks, over 50 people have responded with a level of interest,” Peterson said. 

The project is similar to the luxury homes at the Ritz Carlton resort community in Paradise Valley, said Jim Daniel, president of RL Brown Housing Report.

Of Shea’s 66 home sites there, about half are sold, Peterson said. Those homes will range from 3,500 to more than 7,000 square feet, with average prices around $2.8 million.

Those also are targeted to the move-down buyer, he said.

“Shea has a current $2.74 million closing average at the Ritz and has pulled 30 permits,” Daniel said. “These projects solidify them in offering an ultra luxury product.”

‘Moving to Phoenix like crazy’

Nate Nathan, founder of Nathan & Associates Inc. and land broker on the Shea Homes deal at the Phoenician, said he expects these home sites and others across the Valley to attract people from other areas of the country, including Detroit, Chicago, New York, San Francisco, Seattle and Los Angeles.

“These people are going to be moving to Phoenix like crazy,” he said. 

Also part of the land brokerage deal are Nathan’s team: Dave MullardRyan Duncan and Casey Christensen.

After 40 years of operating the state’s oldest and largest land brokerage firm, Nathan said he’s not worried about Phoenix’s recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic and associated shutdown.

“I’ve lived through five downturns,” he said. “This was not a downturn. This was a tragic speed bump. But we will recover and we will be one of the strongest — if not the strongest — and fastest growing states in the nation.”

Angela Gonzales

Senior Reporter 

Phoenix Business Journal

Share This