By Tonya Munn
We’ve always been small, but mighty.
Starting a business just before the 2008 financial crisis, right around the time Scott and I were planning a wedding, was risky. But we didn’t know to what degree quite then, and maybe that’s a good thing.
My view was that Scott held a strong conviction to pursue his passion of architecture freely, to run a business of architecture the way he wanted, draw from the mentors he had in his education, and in the Vail area and Granby and apply what he learned to his own endeavor.
Where others were a little scared for him for the move “out on his own,” I for one thought, it’s about time. I just knew deep down he could crush it.
But a huge financial crisis proved challenging, and the business didn’t take off as quickly as he’d hoped. Scott had a committed staff of one, a friend and colleague name Tim Hodsdon who helped in those early years to shape Munn Architecture, AIA. The two of them put the few clients they had before their egos and created residential homes that stood out in the Grand County market. Early on, Scott forged relationships with builders and engineers in the area, those he respected, many he still works with and recommends to this day. And he talked to clients honestly about the area, the industry partners, the design work, and clients grew trust in him and the business. Word of mouth has been our greatest marketer.
Fast forward to now, the firm has an architectural staff of five on-site at its base Granby location— at 8,000 feet in elevation — and three more “downslope” in Englewood — at 5,280 feet elevation. We’ve added interior design to our services, and we are investing constantly in the community we love; we even bought the building we were renting in downtown Granby in 2019.
We decided we are no longer one or two, but many. For Scott, it’s never been about his name in the business, it’s about the clients, employees, industry partners that have helped build the business. His approach to “Team” stems from Scott’s past as a World Champion and Olympic rower in the eights. It took great coordination to make the vessel go, not by one, but by all.
We will now call ourselves “MA STUDIOS.”
And our passion for the natural places where we work is only outmatched by our passion for creating livable spaces.
Our portfolio now includes high-end single-family homes in nearly every subdivision and town in the Grand County area, as well as some in Summit County, Steamboat, and southern Colorado. And our recent key projects are Sun Communities’ Sun Outdoors Rocky Mountains main buildings in Granby (they have changed their name too, from River Run); YMCA Snow Mountain Ranch Chief Ouray buildings under construction in Tabernash; restoration and remodel of the historic Grand Lake Yacht Club; East Grand Fire Protection District’s new station near Winter Park Resort; and work on East Grand School District’s soon-to-be-built school buildings.
It's a huge undertaking, taking a name and logo, which served us well for 15 years, and changing it all midstream. Our new website address is now MAarchitectural.com. Thanks to the company Never Settle IT who has been helping us with this rebranding, our new logo evokes the mountains, maybe even ski culture. It’s more contemporary, artsy, distinct. We like it. We have new signs you will see at MA-designed homes throughout the community, and eventually our street sign will change too.
But this whole refresh we think is worth it. It’s time.
It is the hope of the MA Studios crew that the new brand plays well in the market, and especially that folks won’t forget who we are. It is the same established business we’ve long been, always striving to improve in our business practices and striving for creative and sustainable architecture for our extraordinary mountain environments — now with a new look, an added location, added service of interior design, and a continued laser focus on how to best serve our clients and our partners.