The Joy Crew
Artin Arefian, 38, is my right hand man. “Boss” as the crew calls him, does everything from design, pricing, scheduling, picking up and delivering materials, and supervising, to hardcore construction. There is nothing that he doesn’t excel at. Artin is that guy with a beautiful new F-150 Ford truck without a scratch. Only, a few months after meeting him you learn it’s a 15-year-old truck. He is meticulous. He is Boss!
Artin is also good people. He and his wife Nancy live in Encino with, Aiden, their one and half year-old son. He is a family man through and through. In fact, some clients got the pleasure of meeting Artin’s amazing 71-year-old father, Vic, who helped build a handful of catios early on. It is impossible to imagine a better man than Artin to run the crew.
Luis Beltran, 42, aka “The Artist,” has more than 50 catios under his belt. Like all great artists, Luis brings next level creativity and craftsmanship to every job. He’s the one who beautifully weaved an enclosure around the branches of a 100-year-old orange tree. And he’s the one who created a gorgeous wood carving in the shape of the CatCafe Lounge logo.
Luis does not get by on talent alone. He is constantly pushing himself, taking on new challenges, and always striving to improve. And lest anyone think Luis is not committed, he commutes to job sites across Los Angeles and Orange County from Lancaster! So please cut him some slack if you catch him taking a catnap at lunch.
Henry Lopez, 38, started in construction as a sweeper when he was 15 years-old. He has seen and done it all. I call him “The Wizard” because we have never encountered a problem that Henry could not magically figure out. In fact, Henry hates the word “problem”. To him there is no such thing as a problem, but rather a puzzle waiting to be solved. Henry is the guy everyone loves to have on their team. Which is why Luis, who goes back a decade with Henry, encouraged Boss to hire him. They are old friends, but they might as well be brothers.
Speaking of brothers, Henry is big on family too. He’s a single father who has raised three kids – Kaitlyn 20, Elijiah, 17, and Eva, 16 – by himself in South Gate.