Welcome to Inside Optima®: Resident Stories, a series that takes you behind the scenes of life in Optima’s dynamic communities. Through intimate conversations with our residents, we’re exploring the diverse experiences, unique lifestyles, and vibrant cultures that flourish within Optima’s architecturally stunning buildings. Join us as we discover what makes living in an Optima community not just a choice of residence, but a way of life. In this chat, we sat down with Susan Grace, resident at 7140 Optima Kierland®.

Can you start by telling us a little about yourself and how long you have been living at Optima Kierland Apartments?

My husband and I hail from the Midwest but have called Scottsdale home for the last 28 years. Initially, we settled into a beautiful single-family home in North Scottsdale, which we adored. However, after many wonderful years there, we were ready for a change and have been happily residing at Optima Kierland for just over three years now.

The main draw for us moving was the allure of a more vibrant community atmosphere. Despite being active in our previous neighborhood, it often felt like we were lacking meaningful connections. The idea of a broader community, coupled with escaping the constant upkeep of a house, was incredibly appealing. Our friends, who had moved into 7160, Optima Kierland’s first apartment building, gave us a glimpse into the lifestyle here, surrounded by shopping and dining options, which solidified our decision.

What initially attracted you to Optima Kierland, and how did you decide it was the right place for you?

The distinctive architecture of Optima Kierland stood out to us immediately, setting it apart from any other building in the area. Since moving in, the community experience has been nothing short of phenomenal. It has enriched our lives with great new friendships and access to fantastic organized activities.

What’s your favorite aspect of the community here? How do you engage with other residents and community events?

What we treasure most is the daily opportunity to connect with others, whether it’s a casual conversation in the elevator or while working out in the gym. This welcoming culture has significantly enriched our lives. The book club I proposed shortly after moving in has become a social cornerstone for us at 7140 and 7160, and now includes residents from 7190. We also enjoy the myriad of building-organized activities like Taco Night, happy hours, and trivia nights that we regularly enjoy.

How do you take advantage of the building’s amenities?

The amenities here, especially the gym, play a big part in our day-to-day lives. It’s not only well-equipped but also a hub of social activity. And though I haven’t ventured into pickleball, the availability of indoor and outdoor courts and lessons for beginners is fantastic. We also frequent the various common areas across the buildings for coffee meetups or a game of pool and find the conference rooms perfect for when my husband needs to meet with clients.

Can you share any particular experiences over the past few years that have been especially memorable?

Hosting my grandson here has been an absolute joy. He’s always excited to visit, thanks to the plethora of activities available. Renting the guest units in 7140 and 7160 for family stays has allowed us to create cherished memories, offering a more intimate experience than any hotel could provide.

Do you have much interaction with the staff?

Absolutely. The dedication and warmth of the staff, from the management to the maintenance team, significantly enhance our living experience here. I always look forward to my morning greetings with Francis, the resident coordinator in the office or sharing gym time with Macy, the maintenance manager.

Sunset from 7140 Optima Kierland
View of the sunset from 7140 Optima Kierland

What else would you like to share with us?

Above all, the panoramic views from our apartment truly take our breath away. The architectural design affords us an unobstructed westward view, allowing us to enjoy Lookout Mountain, lush greenery, and spectacular sunsets right from our living room. It’s these moments of natural beauty, combined with the vibrant community life, that make living at 7140 Optima Kierland so special.