Past Pages, Aug. 29, 2011: ​​​​​Tourism recovery sparks flurry of new businesses

Cover of the Aug. 29, 2011, edition of the NNBW.

Cover of the Aug. 29, 2011, edition of the NNBW.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Each week in 2021, we will feature snippets of stories that published a decade ago to provide readers a 10-year perspective of business news in the region. This week’s stories first published in the Aug. 29, 2011, edition of the NNBW.

Tourism recovery sparks flurry of new businesses

Nevada tourism executive Larry Friedman can’t remember a time during his two decades in the business that two tourist attractions have opened in rural Nevada within a few days of one another.

But this autumn will see a continued flurry of openings as the industry begins to rebound statewide — and several of the new facilities are in rural areas.

The CommRow renovation of the old Fitzgerald’s property and the Terry Lee Wells Nevada Discovery Museum in Reno are readying for grand openings, and the newly renovated Mizpah Hotel in Tonopah reopened on Saturday.

Fred and Nancy Cline, owners of Cline Cellars Winery in Sonoma, Calif., purchased the Mizpah Hotel earlier this year and have renovated much of the property constructed in 1907. The hotel has 47 rooms, two restaurants, and casino floor space.

— Page 1, by Rob Sabo

Dip in solar cost leads to installation boom

In 1990, the average cost for one watt of solar-generated power was about $100. Today the cost is roughly $4 — and it’s expected to drop more in 2012, says Chad Dickason, principal with Hamilton Solar of Reno.

Those reductions, coupled with rebates from utility providers and the federal government, are translating into big business for solar installation companies and parts suppliers, who are enjoying an increase in sales from commercial and residential installations throughout Northern Nevada.

Eric Dahlgren, owner of Lux Energies in Reno, says solar installations account for about 30 percent of the company’s revenues. But when the electrical contracting company was founded in March of 2008, it had no presence in solar systems. And Reno’s Hamilton Solar has capitalized on the increasing prevalence of solar to grow from just three employees a few years ago to more than 50 today.

— Page 1, by Rob Sabo

Noble Studios moves closer to pool of talent for growth

Noble Studios, which has doubled the size of its staff in the past year, is completing a move intended to land it in the middle of the talent pool from which it recruits.

The company, which provides web design, social media and mobile development and brand strategy services, is moving to 8,600 square feet on the eighth floor of the Bank of America Plaza at 50 W. Liberty St.

Noble Studios previously was headquartered in Carson City, where it was founded by the husband-and-wife team of Jarrod and Season Lopiccolo in a spare bedroom of their home.

— Page 3, by John Seelmeyer


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