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5:08 AM Wed, Nov. 14th

Indoor markets in Prescott gaining momentum

Brett Soldwedel/The Daily Courier<br>Laura and Fred Hughes are ecstatic about the renovation of their retail space in downtown Prescott on Wednesday. They are developing about 65 individual spaces to lease, creating an emporium with artists, jewelers, antiquers and other vendors.

Brett Soldwedel/The Daily Courier<br>Laura and Fred Hughes are ecstatic about the renovation of their retail space in downtown Prescott on Wednesday. They are developing about 65 individual spaces to lease, creating an emporium with artists, jewelers, antiquers and other vendors.

A new trend is catching on in the tri-city area.

People such as Fred and Laura Hughes are taking formerly vacant buildings and turning them into mini shopping centers. The Hugheses are transforming the old Prescott Antiques & Crafts Market into the Cortez Street Emporium at 115 N. Cortez St. The plan is to offer people a potpourri of shopping options including collectibles and vintage items in 5,700 square feet of space.

"We're trying to make it more of an antique feeling," she said.

Laura said the market opened in the early 1980s and closed 10 months ago. The retired couple saw their chance and took the plunge.

Improvements are under way and Fred said the plan is to open Aug. 1 with 64 spaces where people can sell everything from art pieces and crafts to Western clothing.

Fred is adding a dressing room as well as a lounge area, where people who aren't avid shoppers can sit and relax.

Booth prices range from about $40 a month for some shelf space up to $350 a month, depending on the size and configuration of the space, according to Fred. They currently have roughly 30 percent of the spaces rented out.

Laura said it's an attractive option for people to sell their products over renting vacant retail space.

"It's a whole lot more affordable and it's so easy," she said. "It's pretty care-free for people other than buying the merchandise and bringing it in."

Another business owner recently brought his version to Prescott.

Ricky Henderson opened Eumundi Indoor Market a couple of weeks next to the Napa Auto Parts store at 531 Madison Ave. off Miller Valley Road.

Henderson opened The Red House Marketplace in Prescott Valley this past summer. When his lease came up for renewal, Henderson took the opportunity to look at his options and chose the space in Prescott.

"I really wanted this place to be festive, and Eumundi holds that for me," he said.

Vendors are in most of Henderson's 60 retail spaces and offer shoppers a mix of items including records, DVDs, collectibles, clothing, bed sheets, jewelry, swimwear, artwork and rugs in the roughly 8,000-square-foot building.

Henderson is charging tenants $200 per month for a space with electricity and Internet access.

"The overhead is so tiny compared to what you can make," he said.

The Eumundi Indoor Market is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sundays.

For information, call 925-9721 or visit www.eumundiindoormarket.com.

The emporium's hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sundays.

For information, call 642-3900.