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Mountain Shadows demolished to make way for new resort

PARADISE VALLEY, Ariz. — It was the end of an era on Wednesday for a Paradise Valley resort.

The Mountain Shadows resort at 56th Street and Lincoln Drive opened in 1959 and spent the next three decades as one of the most prestigious resorts in the Valley. Then, in 2004 it closed, remaining vacant ever since.

Paradise Valley Mayor Scott LeMarr said it’s time for the resort to go.

“It was asbestos-ridden and had some very old, antiquated mechanical systems,” said LeMarr. “It really didn’t fit the current luxury resort parameters that guests and tourists to our town expect today.”

Crown Development bought Mountain Shadows from Marriott for $42 million in 2007. After years of bankruptcies and legal problems, Crown CEO Robert Flaxman is ready to build a new resort with the same name.

Same name, perhaps, but a very different resort.

“The old resort represented the Arizona of its time — the late 1950s into the 1960s,” Flaxman said. “The new resort is going to represent Paradise Valley of the 21st century. It’s going to be forward thinking, more modern, and contemporary and is going to appeal to the current consumer tastes.”

But one area of the old Mountain Shadow isn’t going anywhere. Despite the resort’s closure nearly a decade ago, the golf course has remained open and operating and will remain a part of the new resort.

Flaxman said the new Mountain Shadows will also have several amenities.

“[Amenities] will include a spa, fitness center, swimming pool, bar, restaurants, retail shops and resort and residential housing, as well as a full-service luxury hotel,” Flaxman said.

Along with the 150-room boutique hotel, 140 new homes will be built at the site. Flaxman expects they will range in price between $1 million and $4 million.

The new Mountain Shadows is expected to open in 2016.