Sun City West, a video tour of the community

Sun City West was the second of the Del Webb “Sun Cities” to be built in the great Phoenix area.  It is still one of the largest communities with a variety of housing styles and options, 4 recreation centers, with the option for garden plots, the Saddle club offing horse stables, bowling alley, 7 golf courses, even the Del Webb Memorial Hospital.  Discover more at ArizonaActiveAdult.com

Sun City West, an Arizona Active Adult Community

West Valley–303 freeway opening up

Connectivity is always a concern when choosing a location for your home.  Living in a 55+ community, your not looking at how long it takes to get to work, commuting being a thing of the past.  But easy access to the city, airport, and other things going on in the greater Valley of the Sun is always a good thing.

The 303 loop section from I17 connecting down to Bell Road is opening this week!

This makes access to Trilogy at Vistancia, Sun City Grand, Sun City West, Arizona Traditions, Corta Bella and more much nicer.

Now hop on the 303 and head north for freeway access to I17.  It comes in just south of Carefree Highway, making for faster access to the north and down to the rest of the city.

Surprises at Sun City West

After picking up the key for a client at their new home in Sun City West, I headed over to the R.H. Johnson Recreation Center to take some photos.  The R.H. Johnson Rec Center is the largest facility in Sun City West and I was amazed to see how much there is available.

Sun City West_021Each ‘room’ was devoted to one club/craft/interest and they were VERY well set up.  The Weavers Guild had several different types of looms, and knowledgeable people to help anyone interested get started weaving.   There was a room for the Pottery makers with kilns, wheels and more.  Sewing rooms with really high tech machines.  Metal working rooms loaded with all you need to make beautiful jewelry.  I was amazed at the diversity in creative opportunities that were waiting to be explored.

Sun City West_115I realize now that any time I have a client interested in Sun City West, the spot I will be taking them is to the Gift Shop.  The Gift Shop has only items made by the residents of Sun City West in all of their clubs and groups.  It is the fastest way to show someone all the things people are doing in this Very Active Adult Community.  (check out the jewelry counters, beautiful hand made items at a fraction of the cost)

So if your either looking for a community where you will never get board, or looking for the perfect gift, Sun City West and their Gift Shop are must see locations.

The Sun Cities in the Valley of the Sun

There are now 6 Sun Cities in and around the Valley of the Sun.

The first Sun City by Del Webb was one of the first Active Adult Communities in Arizona.. His first community was built in Tucson in 1948.  Sun City in Surprise was opened in 1960.  It had 25,000 people show up for the opening weekend.  With 11 golf courses and 7 swimming pools and a club for every activity you can imagine, it grew to 26,000 homes in the 18 years before it was completed. Due to their proximity to the freeways and Phoenix itself, as well as the super low real estate taxes many of the homes are being remodeled and updated.

Sun City  was so successful that additional land was purchased and Sun City West evolved.  It opened in 1978. Not quite the size of Sun City, but still boasting 9 golf courses and 6 pools. The expanded amenities and activities held the interest of the residents of the 17,000 homes.

Del Web expanded the theme of Active Adult Living to include shopping, churches and restaurants and even a hospital within the boundaries of the development. One need have only a golf cart for transportation.  It took another 19 years, until 1997 for Del Webb to reach sell out of Sun City West.

In 1996 construction began on Sun City Grand just to the west and south of Sun City West, with Grand Avenue (Rt. 60) being a divider.  This Active Adult Community was to have a greater range of home sizes.  It was smaller with only 10,000 homes, 5 pools and 3 golf courses.   The community was sold out in 2004.

Corte Bella was the last of the Sun Cities in the cluster forming the NW corner of the Phoenix Valley. It is considered part of Sun City West, although separated by walls.  It is an  upscale, private, gated golf course community with only 1600 homes and a single pool.  The last new build was sold in 2007.

The 5th Sun City is Sun City Festival, located about 30 miles west of Surprise and the 4 preceding Del Webb communities.  It is just north and west of the White Tank Mountains.  Del Webb has perfected the art of Active Adult Communities and this is reputed to be their best yet.  Within a natural unspoiled desert environment, it is likened to the original Sun City 50 years ago. Sun City Festival will have 7200 homes, has one 18 hole golf course with another planned.  The amenities are superb and commercial development is certain to follow.  The project opened in 2006 and is expected to be built  out by 2016.  This Sun City combines the expertise of Pulte in their successful multigenerational communities and Del Webb’s superb active adult specialization.

This combination of multigenerational and active adult communities is a popular concept and allows families to be in close proximity to their retirees while having separate community amenities.  Del Webb and Pulte repeated this in the most recent development, Sun City Anthem in Florence, about 55 miles southeast of central Phoenix.  This community opened in 2006 and is expected to reach  build out by 2014.