Highline Autos David M. Brown writes about Alpio of Alpio’s @ Troon Event Center:
Alpio Barbara hosts Cars and Coffee every month at work –– and enjoys his prized cars every day at home, with or without a cup of joe.
Cars and Coffee happens the second Saturday of each month, 7–10 a.m., at his Alpios at Troon –– “Let’s Go Back in Time” –– in the Villages of Pinnacle Peak, 10452 East Jomax Road, at Alma School Road in north Scottsdale. The native Californian opened the event center in April 2016, and Valley car- and cycle-lovers have been revved since.
With an events-friendly double mezzanine level, Alpios Place also hosts birthday celebrations, baby showers, weddings, Halloween, Christmas and bachelorette parties and business team-builders and conferences.
“I was approached by people from clubs and organizations who heard about the place and wanted to rent it for themed events,” he says. “We did a Halloween Party for the Ferrari Club of Arizona and also a live screening of the US Formula 1 Race,” he adds, noting he’ll cater or you can arrange that.
Barbara’s center is furnished as a ’50s-style diner, with alternating classic cars and motorcycles, and includes arcade games, pinball, pool table, internet hookups as well as a 80-inch TV screen for presentations, vintage gas pumps and life-size mannequins of the Rat Pack, Marilyn Monroe and motorcycle officers. Swooping from the ceiling are large-scale models of military aircraft acquired from private collections and period neon signs on the walls.
At home, he has a collection that’s worth some neon, too. “What makes my collection special is that I have different cars from muscle to the sports cars; it’s very eclectic,” Barbara says.
Among his 18 cars, he has four Corvettes, a ’54, ’61, ’66 and a 2014, a 1966 Mustang convertible and a fastback from that vintage, too. Also: a 1970 Dodge Challenger 426 Hemi (clone); 1969 Chevy El Camino and 1970 Chevelle; 1966 Plymouth Barracuda; 1965 Factory 5 Shelby; 1996 Dodge Viper; 1933 Ford Roadster Street Rod; 2007 F430 Ferrari; and, the latest acquisition, a Ferrari 458.
“Auto passion has been in my blood since I was a teenager,” says Barbara, the owner/operator of Redwood General Tire in Redwood City, south of San Francisco. In 2016, he was named Modern Tire Dealer of the Year by Modern Tire Dealer Magazine, the premier industry publication.
“When I was 19, I installed wheels and tires on Steve McQueen’s Mustang for the movie “Bullitt,” he recalls. “I did not know it was for McQueen until four months later when the owner of the high-performance shop that did the dyno on the motor told us. They just found the original in a scrap yard in Mexico.”
He began his collection years ago and kept his cars when he moved to north Scottsdale and opened Alpios at Troon. “Before in California, I could not afford or want to buy a building to house my cars, as the real estate was too expensive,” he explains.
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