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DOWNTOWN REDO: Trendy living space, craft bar to replace old Athletic Club

Photo by Matt Hinshaw.

Workout and racquetball enthusiasts hoping to see the eventual return of the Prescott Downtown Athletic Club may be sorely disappointed to hear that the fitness facility, located at 130 N. Cortez St., will not be returning.

Both of the buildings previously used for the fitness center were sold late last year to two separate buyers and neither one has plans for their building that includes exercising equipment.

Joe Lohmeier, who recently also acquired the building on South Montezuma last occupied by Brick & Bones Moonshine Bar & Bistro, purchased the gymnasium portion of the facility (the shorter building), and Judy Numbers, who used to work for Bucky’s and Yavapai Casinos in the administration offices, purchased the front entrance and racquetball portion (the taller building).

The general idea for the taller building is to have a craft bar at the front entrance, about 600 to 700 feet of retail space for lease just north of that, and an elevator that will lead to two stories of condominiums, said Simon Fort, who is marketing the project for Numbers and will serve as the listing agent once the condominiums are complete.

“I wouldn’t say it’s an easy transition into condominiums from racquetball courts, but we’re working on the drawings and hope to get things rolling here pretty soon,” Fort said.

That building in particular used to be the old Prescott Hotel and was possibly three to four stories at one point, he said.

“We’re going to maintain as much of the building’s feel and architecture as possible,” Fort said. “We’re even going to keep the old Prescott Hotel sign up on the top. But we are going to try to expose some of the windows that had been covered over before so there’s some natural light flowing through into those condos.”

They anticipate getting either five or six condos out of it, mostly higher-end and some possibly left only partially built so buyers can have some choices for customization.

“It’s a great location, there will be parking available, and it’s extremely accessible to everything downtown,” Fort said.

A completion date has not been set, but they have selected a contractor and hope to have the plans hammered out in the next few weeks so they can officially break ground, Fort said.

As for the gymnasium portion of the building, Lohmeier hasn’t quite decided yet what he will be doing with that space. He said much of it depends on whether or not South Montezuma is approved as an entertainment district, which will determine where he ends up using his recently purchased series 6 liquor license (full-service bar).

“I’m hoping for the entertainment district because I think the right place for the 6 to do charity events for local charities and whatnot would be 214 Montezuma because we’d have a lot more people over there,” Lohmeier said.

If the entertainment district does not get approved, then he plans to use the series 6 at the Cortez Street building.

“We’ll do a little speakeasy section in the back, we’ll do a little whiskey versus tequila section bar, and probably sell packaged stuff too,” Lohmeier said.

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