[Source: Georgann Yara, Special for The Republic] — When Cindy Dach and her husband, Greg Esser, bought a vintage cottage south of Roosevelt Street and west of Seventh Street in 2001, the area was sketchy, especially after sunset, Dach said. At the time, Dach joked that when she saw a car slow she would hurry inside. Five years later, a slowing car means a real-estate agent or prospective homebuyer is inspecting properties. “Now it’s someone looking for one of our hidden bars,” Dach said. “It’s funny how that metaphor of cars slowing down shows how the neighborhood is changing.”
That vintage cottage houses her shop, Made Art Boutique, part of a revitalization of funky galleries, eclectic boutiques, and bars in the heart of Phoenix’s hipster haven. That was not the vibe when Dach opened Made Art in March 2005. At first, the boutique opened for limited hours and focused around events and occasionally offered crafting workshops. By that November, Dach was able to expand hours. The business was running at a loss at first, but it stabilized in 2007.
Owning the building gave Dach the flexibility to take risks. “It was a huge advantage,” she said. “We knew the rent wouldn’t go up when the neighborhood changes, and we felt we could manage it within the community. We did know we were ahead of our time.” [Note: Read the full article at Couple invest in downtown Phoenix neighborhood, arts boutique.]