Many believe that there is an artist in everyone in one form or another. A musician, a poet, sculptor, or maybe a painter. If there is a place in Santa Cruz County that will bring out your artistic side, that place is Niko’s at 1147 W Frontage Rd in Rio Rico. Although it may not look like much from the outside, once a customer enters, the world transforms into a surreal artistic dream decorated with incredible art, and stocked with just about anything one needs for gifts, special occasions, and art supplies.
Niko’s is not just any other art supply/novelty gift shop though. Along with everything on the shelf, the shop also doubles as a gallery for several local artists(not all art is for sale). The art on display ranges from paintings hanging from the walls, to detailed tile mosaic sculptures and vases. There is even an incredible display of paintings by the talented daughter of shop owner, Lupita Munguia.
One of the main aspects of Niko’s is of course the art supplies. There they have everything any aspiring artist needs to start exploring the artist inside. Whether your passion is water coloring, acrylic, sketch, or even finger painting, Niko’s has it for all ages.
Even if you’re not planning on being the next world famous artist to come out of SCC, Niko’s may still have just what you need. Along with the vast selection of art supplies, there is also a wide variety of gift supplies and décor items for special occasions, including flower arrangements and corsages. They also have great gifts and décor to help you commemorate any special occasion in your life, whether it’s a wedding, communion, or baptism. Niko’s has nearly everything you can get in Tucson with the benefit of being local. If it’s not something they have in stock, they’ll be sure to order it for you.
Niko’s also offers a number of services to their customers. Services like gift wrapping, canvas stretching, etc. They even offer photography services for all your special occasions, and during holidays they even have Santa and the Easter Bunny come to visit so that children can get their pictures taken with them.
Perhaps the service that Munguia and staff are most proud of is the framing service that they offer. In the back, behind the sales floor and gallery area is the work shop where they will frame just about anything you want. Artists and galleries from all over the country have turned to Niko’s, putting their trust in them to care for and complete their works of art. Even a number of local businesses and government agencies go to Niko’s to get their certificates and other important documentation framed.
Aside from photos, and artwork, the staff at Niko’s will also frame your collectors items or any memory you want to preserve and display. If the item(s) is too big to fit in a conventional frame, they will build and frame a display box for you to keep it in. And they always add their own personal touch that completes the whole thing. A great example of this is demonstrated through one customer’s experience.
A gentleman had a proud moment with his son that he wanted to hold onto. His son had just gotten his first hole in one on the golf course. The gentleman brought everything that he felt captured the event; the golf ball, the tee, the scorecard, and a photo of his son standing triumphantly over the hole where he sunk the ball. He asked if they could frame it, and not too long after it was ready for display, now enclosed inside a solid, attractive shadow box.
One of the most important things offered by Niko’s is art lessons for kids. It’s a great opportunity for children to explore their talents and express their creativity while enriching their education. “It inspires the kids,” says Munguia. “It opens their minds.” For the first few sessions, all supplies are provided for the child until they begin to discover their own style and become their own artists. According to Munguia, the child’s perception begins to change.
What to many is just a flower, the children start to see as art, observing all the details, and what use to be red, blue, green, etc., becomes an infinite number color variations. It is true that all of this can be found at other places too, but Niko’s has the experience, the personal touch, and is close by. They will gladly cater to your needs, and will always provide a friendly, personal experience to everyone that walks through the door. You may walk in a customer, but you will leave as a friend.