Turning a canal into a “Waterfront.” The serial entrepreneurs in the Entertainment District.  Art auctions and galleries.  DC Ranch.  Desert Mountain.  The Coach House.  

One of Scottsdale’s strengths is its ability to surprise with excellence, and the unexpected.  

Fortunately, another such example just came to town.  It’s called “Wonderspaces,” and it just opened in part of the old Harkins Theatres’ space in Scottsdale Fashion Square.  There, in 16,000 square feet you can find largely interactive art from around the country and world that would never have otherwise come.  In some ways it is a reinvention of the museum in a way that appeals to art lovers, seniors, tourists and families all in one.  

And with exhibits rotating every several months it will stay fresh.  

Started by a young Yale graduate, several years ago he sought out Scottsdale for the first display of Wonderspaces.  Despite extensive efforts he wasn’t able to do so.  Despite pursuing Scottsdale Fashion Square to use what was then the empty Barney’s space, they wouldn’t give him the time of day.  

What a difference two shows in San Diego totaling nearly 200,000 people makes.  

Now, Wonderspaces isn’t just a cool new thing that fits perfectly into the city’s ethos.  It’s an inventive new use for Scottsdale’s largest sales tax generator.