Terranea Timeshares (only $2,000,000.00)

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Posted by Elaine on October 03, 2005 at 06:17:29:

For Just $2 Million, You Can Own a Hotel Room on the Coast
# The developer of the Terranea resort in Rancho Palos Verdes plans to sell units to individual investors. By Roger Vincent, Times Staff Writer

If you want to own a room in Los Angeles County's newest and only seaside resort, it's going to cost about $2 million and you can stay there for no more than 90 days a year.

The developer of the planned Terranea Resort in Rancho Palos Verdes announced this week that it would sell some of the 592 units to individual investors to help provide financing for the $325-million luxury hotel on majestic bluffs once occupied by the Marineland of the Pacific theme park. Owners would be able to rent the units to guests.

Such "condo hotels" are increasingly common, industry analysts say, especially in popular urban centers and at plush coastal and mountain resorts. Terranea, which is expected to open in 2007, will have the investment edge of being the only modern resort in Los Angeles County.

Terranea a name made up by developer Lowe Enterprises Inc. is the latest in a burst of resort development on the Southern California coast and will compete with high-end properties such as Bacara in Santa Barbara and the Montage Resort and Spa in Laguna Beach. To comply with land-use restrictions, owners of rooms at Terranea may use them for no more than three months out of the year.

"The growth in demand has just been phenomenal," said hotel industry analyst Bruce Baltin of PKF Consulting. "There is pent-up demand for this sort of product in Southern California. Everything that gets built gets absorbed."

The coastal resorts are designed to appeal to a broad spectrum of guests. Well-heeled local residents as well as leisure travelers from afar patronize the resorts' restaurants and spas and enjoy weekend getaways, Baltin said. But perhaps the bulk of business comes from corporate clients who host company meetings or offer visits as rewards for their best workers.

Revenue per available room, a standard industry measure, has risen by as much as 15% in the last year at Southern California coastal resorts, said another consultant, Alan Reay of Atlas Hospitality.

"The timing for this type of resort in this location is excellent," he said.

Terranea has been designed to appeal to both locals and corporate travelers. It will have 60,000 square feet of meeting space, including an 18,000-square-foot ballroom among the largest such space in the region. Nearly all meeting rooms will have ocean views. Outdoor space will be created for weddings and other social events.

Other elements:

A spa. With spas now considered a mandatory amenity in the resort industry, Terranea's is planned as a central attraction, with 20 treatment rooms overlooking the ocean, a fitness center and an outdoor lap pool.

Leisure amenities. Terranea will have a golf academy designed by Irvine architect Todd Eckenrode, with a short practice course and access to Trump National Golf Course three miles away. The resort will also have three swimming pools, two tennis courts and three restaurants.

Children's activities. The resort will have in-room baby-sitting services and a children's center with on-site recreational and educational programs, such as a "film camp."

Outdoor activities. As part of its required commitment to public coastal access, Terranea will have more than two miles of public trails and access to a popular launching point for kayakers and scuba divers.

"We want to honor that wonderful natural point of land with a facility that the Southern California community can be proud of," said Robert Lowe, chief executive of Los Angeles-based Lowe Enterprises.

Destination Hotels & Resorts, a Lowe subsidiary that manages more than 8,000 hotel rooms, will operate the hotel. Lowe is also developing the 1,040-acre Grizzly Ranch in Portola, the 700-acre Stone Eagle Golf Club in Palm Desert and the 6,000-acre Suncadia project near Rosalyn, Wash.

Creating resorts on the Southern California coast is such a challenge that the current round of development including Terranea and planned resorts in Del Mar and Newport Beach may be the last for a decade or more, Baltin said. There are few sites left, and getting government approvals is generally a lengthy task.

Lowe spent seven years planning Terranea after two other developers failed to get hotel projects underway.

From 1954 to 1986 the site was occupied by Marineland of the Pacific, which predated Disneyland as the first true destination amusement park in Southern California.

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