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Old May 11th, 2008, 11:00 AM
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diegodawn diegodawn is offline
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Join Date: May 2008
Location: California
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Morgans Hotel Group Announces New Mondrian in Palm Springs
NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jan. 14, 2008--Morgans Hotel Group Co. (NASDAQ: MHGC) ("MHG") today announced a new joint venture with RE:Loft Partners Palm Springs, LLC to develop Palm Springs Hotel & Residences ("the Resort") in downtown Palm Springs, California. The Resort plans call for a Mondrian hotel with approximately 200 rooms, as well as residences available for sale. The Resort is expected to open in 2010. This new venture is the seventh announced Mondrian, including the renowned, original West Hollywood Mondrian, the new Mondrian Scottsdale, and properties under development in Las Vegas, Miami, Chicago and SoHo.
Located in the heart of downtown Palm Springs on Amado Road, the Resort will be directly across from the newly renovated Palm Springs Convention Center and a short walk from the main downtown retail promenade. The five-story property sits on 10.5 acres and is expected to include a destination restaurant and bar. The Resort is also expected to boast a spa and fitness center as well as an expansive social pool area with cabanas and outdoor bar access, and a kids club to support leisure family travel as well as residential owners.
The Resort is also expected to have significant flexible indoor and outdoor meeting and function space, including a large ballroom and a board room. Additional meeting and function facilities would include a movie screening room. Leading architecture firms Gensler and Marta Fry Landscape Architects will oversee the property's development.
"Palm Springs is experiencing a dramatic revitalization, and we are pleased to establish our footprint in one of the premier resort destinations in the U.S.," said Marc Gordon, Chief Investment Officer of MHG. "Our property will set a new precedent for development in downtown Palm Springs, which provides an alternative to the golf resort destinations in the Palm Springs area and to the Las Vegas party scene. We are pleased to be at the cutting edge of the Palm Springs 'renaissance,' just as we were with the opening of Delano in South Beach and Mondrian on Sunset Boulevard in Los Angeles."
"We see tremendous opportunities in the resurgence of downtown Palm Springs," said Fred Kleisner, President and Chief Executive Officer of MHG. "With its legendary glamour and energy, we expect this property to attract the hip, diverse clientele that our Mondrian brand is known for. We are excited about our expansion into this vibrant market and look forward to the continued success of the Mondrian brand."
Upon completion, MHG is expected to operate the hotel under a ten-year management contract with five-year extension options.

Stefanie Frith, The Desert Sun
March 2008. By Stefanie Frith. This former bank building at Baristo Road and Palm Canyon Drive in downtown Palm Springs is being refurbished. When completed, it could be home to several restaurants and a possible small grocery store.
Leasing options
Interested in leasing in a refurbished bank building? Space is available for offices, restaurants, bars and a 5,000-square-foot gourmet market. Contact Sperry Van Ness at 778-6856.


Arrayed in a mostly linear, north-south axis at the base of the San Jacinto Mountains, downtown is usually considered to be the area between Ramon Road to the south, and Alejo Road at the north. The principal commercial arteries are Palm Canyon Drive and Indian Canyon Drive, which run parallel and one block apart. The area to the east of these streets, all the way to Sunrise Way, is home to the Agua Caliente Casino and Spa Hotel, the city’s Convention Center, and numerous hotel and condominium projects. It is in this section of the City, because of a separate master plan initiated with the Cahuilla tribe, that higher buildings (up to one hundred feet) on larger parcels are allowed. Accordingly, an expanded Casino and Spa Hotel, a Hard Rock Hotel, and a Mondrian Hotel, are in the planning stages in this area. These taller buildings, and other multi-story projects being proposed downtown, are encountering resistance from some in the community. Many feel that the “village atmosphere” is being compromised and threatened, and views of the beloved mountains blocked.

In July 2005, the City of Palm Springs adopted the “Interim Downtown Urban Design Plan” to function as a guide for development in the core area. Significant in the document are height limits, density “nodes”, streetscape and landscaping concepts, and building massing strategies. Because of the length of the downtown corridor, the document recommends the creation of a “southern gateway” project on the north side of Ramon Road, between Palm Canyon Drive and Indian Canyon Drive, and a corresponding “northern gateway” just south of Alejo Road. Both projects, which are mixed-use commercial/residential structures, have been designed and approved by the City. (The northern gateway project, “Port Lawrence”, is currently under construction.)

At the “crossroads” of downtown, Tahquitz Canyon Drive at Palm Canyon Drive, a major “hub” is intended. Currently, much of this prime area is occupied by the vacant “Desert Fashion Plaza” shopping center, a typical (and outdated) enclosed retail mall. This building, and much of the adjacent land, is owned by Wessman Development, which is proposing a major, mixed-use commercial/residential project, dubbed “Museum Market Plaza”. The project will return much of the former street grid, and perhaps more importantly, creates part of an intended link between the Palm Springs Art Museum at the base of the mountain and the convention center to the east. Unfortunately, the historic “Town and Country Center”, designed by A. Quincy Jones and Paul R. Williams in 1947, is threatened by the Museum Market Plaza project. It is this potential loss of an important building and courtyard space that led to Palm Springs Re-Imagined.

Retrofitting and widening the Bogert Trail Bridge is expected to get underway in 2008 and it will take slightly
less than a year to complete.
Construction on the South Palm Canyon bridge project is not expected to start before 2009 and will take at least
one year to construct.
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