Where is the soul of Phoenix? It depends on whom you ask. For each of these Phoenix residents, something about the city got into their veins, inspiring them to put down roots, pursue their passions or start a business.
Watch these 90-second videos to learn their stories.
Lo-Lo's Chicken and Waffles' Larry White
For restaurateur Larry White, Phoenix has always been home. It's where he put down his own roots as well as the foundation of his business, Lo-Lo’s Chicken & Waffles, an establishment that grew from his passion for cooking for friends and family. Now, White’s business serves a large community, and he finds the soul of the city in the neighborhood streets that he knows like the back of his hand.
Maya's Farm's Maya Dailey
When you’re from the Sonoran Desert, you’re connected to the natural world. That’s how farmer and independent business owner Maya Dailey explains her passion for plants and why her certified organic market, Maya’s Farm, has its roots in the urban core of metro Phoenix. In this video, Maya shares how the soul of Phoenix is growth – not just in year-round farming, but in opportunities and entrepreneurship. You’ll find Maya’s harvested produce throughout the community in local chef-owned restaurants such as Pane Bianco.
The Rhythm Room's Bob Corritore
Blues musician and club owner Bob Corritore shares how he finds the soul of Phoenix inside the four walls of his central Phoenix live-music venue, the Rhythm Room, which has showcased national and local musicians for nearly 25 years. Phoenix’s “easy way” has appealed to Corritore since he relocated to Phoenix from Chicago in 1981. As an accomplished harmonica player, Corritore has performed alongside greats likes Bo Diddley and Little Milton, and he brings this passion for the blues to his soulful music club. At the Rhythm Room, images of blues legends adorn the walls while their spirits fill the space within. Live acts grace the stage almost every night of the week, and the music goes way beyond the blues.
Ezra Arthur's Sebastian Sandersius
Sebastian Sandersius, maker of custom leather goods and owner of Ezra Arthur, chose downtown Phoenix as the place to set up shop and grow his family business. It’s the innovative and entrepreneurial spirit of the neighborhood — home to Roosevelt Row and the First Fridays Art Walk —that attracts Sandersius to the area.
Barrio Cafe's Chef Silvana Salcido Esparza
Chef Silvana Salcido Esparza shares how she finds the soul of Phoenix in the art, community, and authentic Mexican cuisine of her central Phoenix restaurant, Barrio Cafe. Award-winning Chef Esparza brings her passion for cooking and love of southern Mexican dishes into Barrio Café’s kitchen, a place she found healing and family after coming to Phoenix. You can discover the Café for yourself in the heart of the Calle 16 mural project. This community effort has transformed the 16th street neighborhood with murals and street art commissioned from local artists.
Street Artist Thomas "Breeze" Marcus
As a descendant of Phoenix’s original people, muralist Thomas “Breeze” Marcus' intricate art is a continuation of a legacy, a bridge between the past and future. In this video, he explains how his work becomes part of the living tapestry of Phoenix—and how he finds its soul in his canvas, the city’s walls.
Bunky Boutique's Rachel Malloy
Rachel Malloy, owner of Bunky Boutique, describes her customers as downtowners whose shopping habits are defined by community pride and sense of discovery. Her boutique specializes in local indie designers and Arizona-pride products.