Celebrities who live in Arizona | Phoenix New Times

16 celebrities who live in Arizona

Here are the famous names and high-profile people who call our state home.
Musician, winemaker and Arizona resident Maynard James Keenan.
Musician, winemaker and Arizona resident Maynard James Keenan. Jim Louvau
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Arizona may host myriad celebrities within its borders at any time, but they're typically here for a short visit. Special events like the WM Phoenix Open or stylish resort destinations like Scottsdale or Sedona are popular draws, attracting famous names to our state each year.

Then there are all the high-profile people, ranging from athletes to actors, who reside in our state either part-time or full-time.

Celebrities like Tool and Puscifer frontman Maynard James Keenan, NBA legend Charles Barkley, actor George Takei and “Twilight” author Stephenie Meyer all call Arizona home.

Maybe you've spotted them at a high-end grocery store in north Scottsdale or at posh eateries around town. If you haven't, keep an eye out for any of the stars making up the following list, because you might just run into them.
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A 2011 photo of Nic Nemeth, formerly known as Dolph Ziggler.
Gage Skidmore/CC BY-SA 2.0/Flickr

Nic Nemeth

The professional wrestler and stand-up comedian formerly known as WWE’s Dolph Ziggler has been a longtime resident of the Valley. Now performing under his legal name, Nic Nemeth, he competes in Tokyo-based New Japan Pro Wrestling, Lucha Libre AAA Worldwide in Mexico and various independent promotions across the U.S. In 2015, Nemeth told Phoenix New Times how much he enjoys the Valley’s “great weather” while kicking back at his home.

Noam Chomsky

Renowned author, academic and political commentator Noam Chomsky is celebrated for his groundbreaking work in linguistics, cognitive science and activism. His prolific career spans decades and includes penning numerous influential books on language, politics and society. Since 2017, Chomsky has been a distinguished faculty member of the University of Arizona, serving as a laureate professor in the Department of Linguistics in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, continuing to inspire and provoke critical thinking and social activism.
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Former child star Frankie Muniz.
Zach Catanzareti Photo

Frankie Muniz

When he's not pursuing his new career as a NASCAR driver, former child star Frankie Muniz calls the Phoenix area home. Back in the early 2000s, he traded barbs with legendary “Breaking Bad” actor Bryan Cranston on the beloved sitcom “Malcolm in the Middle.” Currently, Muniz lives in the Valley with his wife, Paige, and their son, Mauz.

Doug Stanhope

When caustic stand-up comic, author, political activist and vulgarian Doug Stanhope isn't touring clubs around the country, he lives in a rainbow-colored domicile known as the "Fun House" down in the southern Arizona mining town of Bisbee. Fans of the comedian probably already know this, since he records his long-running podcast there most of the time and has hosted a legendary Super Bowl party almost every year.
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A 2012 photo of "Twilight" author and Arizona resident Stephenie Meyer.
Gage Skidmore/CC BY-SA 2.0/Flickr

Stephenie Meyer

Best-selling author Stephenie Meyer — best known for penning the phenomenally popular “Twilight” vampire romance book series — has been a resident of the Valley for decades. Born in Hartford, Connecticut, but raised in Scottsdale, the Chaparral High School graduate and lifelong member of the Mormon church has lived with her husband and their three sons in a 3,316-square-foot Cave Creek since 2007.

Arie Luyendyk Jr.

Loyal fans of ABC reality show "The Bachelor" will remember the pivotal moment of Season 22 when former Bachelor Arie Luyendyk Jr. ended his two-month engagement with season winner Becca Kuffrin. He became the franchise’s most hated bachelor when he picked the season’s runner-up, Lauren Burnham. After the two married, they moved into their remodeled 2,607-square-foot ranch house in Phoenix in 2018, where they raise their baby girl, Alessi, when they're not creating a social media controversy.
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Mesa-born actor and Oscar winner Troy Kotsur (left) was honored with the key to the city in 2022.
City of Mesa

Troy Kotsur

Mesa native Troy Kotsur, whose revelatory performance as a struggling fisherman in the 2021 film "CODA" earned him the 2022 Academy Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role. Kotsur is the second Arizona native to win an acting Oscar (the first was Emma Stone for "La La Land" in 2017), and more importantly, he's the first deaf man to earn one. He even was awarded a key to his hometown by Mesa Mayor John Giles prior to his win.

Danica Patrick

World-famous former IndyCar and NASCAR driver Danica Patrick raced souped-up rides in cities across the U.S. for more than a decade before retiring from competition in 2018. These days, she’s still involved with the sport, albeit as a commentator. When Patrick isn’t calling the action, she resides in an 8,300-square-foot mansion near Camelback Mountain in Scottsdale that features a wine cellar, gym and a seven-car garage.
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Hall of Famer Charles Barkley loomed large in the Valley during the Phoenix Suns' 1992-93 season.
Phoenix Suns

Charles Barkley

NBA legend Charles Barkley, famed for his tenacious play on the basketball court and candid commentary off of it, is famous in the Valley for his four-season stint with the Phoenix Suns. Since 1998, he’s owned a posh Mediterranean-style mansion in Scottsdale’s Gainey Ranch neighborhood. Surrounded by lush greenery and offering breathtaking views of the desert landscape, the $2.2-million-dollar residence exudes opulence and features a swimming pool, tennis courts, a putting green and an eight-car garage. In other words, the “Round Mound of Rebound,” who works as a commentator on the “NBA on TNT,” is still living large these days.

Bret Michaels

According to an interview with Phoenix New Times in 2012, former Poison frontman Brett Michaels “fell in love with the Southwest” as a teenager and eventually would up purchasing thie first of many home in the Valley. It's a move that probably kept him alive. Michaels credits the docs at St. Joseph Hospital's Barrow Neurological Institute, who "pretty much saved my life" after enduring a brain hemorrhage and heart issues in 2010.
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Rob Halford of Judas Priest.
Jim Louvau

Rob Halford

The legendary frontman of the iconic heavy metal band Judas Priest first visited Arizona in 1978, bought a home in Paradise Valley seven years later and has been here ever since. As the singer told New Times in 2008, he digs the climate (which shouldn't be surprising, considering that he hails from rainy ol' England), our "maverick" spirit and the beauty of the desert. Rock on.

George Takei

"Star Trek" actor, LGBTQ activist, social media star, and national treasure George Takei has been a part-time resident of Show Low for decades. His husband, Brad Takei, is an Arizona native and the couple currently own a home in the upscale Torreon housing community outside the city. They reportedly spend several weeks a year vacationing there when not in New York or L.A. Their connections with Arizona don’t end there, though, as the couple purchased their wedding bands from the Heard Museum.


If you ever tuned into Ice-T's reality show “Ice Loves Coco” on E!, you might've caught an occasional glimpse of the style three-bedroom Chandler home the rapper and actor shares with his wife Coco Austin. They purchased the property back in 2007 and both the house and various shots of the east Valley suburb appeared in episodes of the show. While they mainly hang out in NYC and L.A., they still own their Chandler pad and occasionally spend time there. Ice-T is also known to visit Valley spots when he’s in town, including popular hip-hop shop Trill.

Alice Cooper

As if his charity events, appearances in commercials or other local endeavors haven't clued you in, Alice Cooper is a proud resident of Phoenix. The legendary shock-rocker got his start here, attending Cortez High School in the 1960’s and appearing as a member of rock band The Spiders on “The Wallace and Ladmo Show” before becoming a rock superstar in the ‘70s and ‘80s.
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Musician, winemaker and Arizona resident Maynard James Keenan.
Jim Louvau

Maynard James Keenan

Tool fans around Arizona seem to take pride in the fact that they share the same state with Maynard James Keenan in some fashion, since the musician/actor/author/vintner has a home near Jerome, as well as his nearby winemaking endeavors (including Merkin Vineyards and his Caduceus Cellars tasting room). Countless thousands of Tool fanatics make their way to the mountain town every year to sample Maynard's wines and maybe catch a glimpse of the reclusive star.

Michael Phelps

Having won the most Olympic medals in history, swimmer Michael Phelps eased into happy retirement after the 2016 Summer Olympics. After selling his Paradise Valley home for $3.5 million in November 2018, Phelps moved his growing family just down the road to a bigger house. Besides raising three boys with his wife, Nicole, Phelps helped coach the Arizona State University swim team back during the 2016-17 season.

Editor's note: This post has been updated from its original version, which first appeared in May 2014. Sara Edwards and Jennifer Goldberg contributed to this article.
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