Barbara and Joe Iverson relocated permanently from Phoenix 17 years ago, but opened their first furniture and design center Casa Bonita in 1991. They are now consultants for Mary Hernandez’s Su Casa shop along Rodeo Drive.
1. How would you describe yourself in one sentence?
B: I consider myself to be optimistic, creative, hard worker and caring mother and wife.
J: Outgoing and friendly.
2. When and how did you first discover Peñasco?
B: In 1964 I came to Peñasco with then three of my five children for a camping trip near what is now Peñasco del Sol Hotel. At that time, there was a beach prior to the land fill which created the hotel, condo and the Plaza Las Gloria’s commercial plaza.
J: Barb introduced me to Peñasco in 1987 for the first time and stayed in a trailer on one of her lots she had purchased in Las Conchas.
3. What enticed you to locate here?
B: Always loved this place so in 1965 purchased property in Las Conchas so that there was a place to bring the children. It was totally undeveloped without water or electricity and began with a pop-up trailer.
J: Barb and the allure of the ocean and the town of Rocky Point.
4. What was your biggest challenge when adjusting to life here?
B: The business rules and regulations without access to reliable resources, so we seem to find out information after the fact.
J: Not speaking the language although I’ve struggled for years to obtain the ability and have always admired those who are bilingual.
5. How do you fill your days?
B: Besides working, life keeps me constantly on the go. Additionally, we have an organic garden with a composting focus and over time have found plants adaptable to the climate.
J: Working in the store and yard and just enjoying people. Our garden has been five years in the making and is now producing after much composting and patient tending. Also, walking our dog Heidi on the beach.
6. Besides here, where do you think of as home and what do you miss about that home?
B: Chicago, Illinois and its cultural offerings.
J: Phoenix area and the drag racing I use to do. As a matter of fact, my dragster has been storage since 1993 and my last visit to see it was New Year’s Eve four years ago.
7. Prior to locating in Peñasco, what was your job/career path?
B: Began as a nurse and also taught nursing at Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Upon returning to the Phoenix area began a 17 year real estate career and at the same time opened our first store in Peñasco even before Plaza Las Glorias Hotel (now Peñasco del Sol) or any condos were built. The store was a result of my life-long interest in architecture and utilized my studies in art and design.
J: General contractor building custom homes in the Lynchfield area and built multiple Hometown Buffet restaurants plus did a total renovation of the State Line Hotel and Casino. The bonus monies from exceeding a deadline for a project provided the capital to open the first Casa Bonita design center here.
8. What here always brings a smile?
B: The weather and the beach.
9. If you were to leave, what would you miss most?
B: The community and the friendships developed over the years.
J: The Sea of Cortes and a lot of the people.
10. What one thing would you say to convince someone to relocate here?
B: Peñasco is a wonderful community with lots of opportunities for development.
J: Come to paradise!