Sprawling, casita-style resort under construction in Coachella near music festival venues
Each year, the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival and its sister country music event bring hundreds of thousands of revelers into the desert, far from the hip restaurants, hotels and other attractions of a reviving Palm Springs.
Now, a group of developers with celebrity pedigree are building a 35-acre resort with a hip hotel that will not only host the hugely popular festivals, but serve as a recreational attraction in its own right – and help develop the eastern end of the city. Coachella Valley in a destination over a year.
The resort is close to the Empire Polo Club, home to Coachella and the Stagecoach Festival, but will have its own 11-acre grass-covered “playground” to host music events, wellness retreats and parties. corporate or private events, said Steve Bram of George Smith Partners, who organized the construction funding.
The developers, he said, include Los Angeles real estate investor Stuart Rubin and LA entertainment attorney Gary Stiffelman, who has represented Lady Gaga, Eminem and Justin Timberlake, according to Bloomberg.
The centerpiece of the resort will be a 10,000 square foot Las Vegas-style party pool filled with chilled salt water so it doesn’t overheat in hot weather. It will be flanked by two- to four- and six-bedroom casitas that share living rooms and social spaces for entertaining but with private entrances and bathrooms.
The pool will have a DJ stage and a catwalk in the middle where models can strut, he said, with “a large cocktail bar attached.”
Features at Indigo will include a spa, gym, and yoga studio. There will also be a restaurant, a general store and a cafe. A marijuana dispensary recently opened next to the hotel.
The complex’s public buildings, including its conference space, were designed to evoke Quonset huts, Bram said, the humble semi-circular structures mass-produced during World War II that were once common in the desert.
“The conceptual design of the hotel is so original and so unique that the lender fell in love,” said Bram, who declined to name the bank.
The 250 rooms will be operated under the flag of the Indigo Hotel, a chic lifestyle brand of the InterContinental Hotels group based in the United Kingdom. An Indigo hotel recently opened in the $ 1 billion Metropolis residential project in downtown Los Angeles.
Work on the hotel began this year and is expected to be completed in the fall, in time for peak desert season. Its price is estimated at $ 45 million.
The arrival of such an upscale resort where guests can come for business retreats or relax for several days “has been a long time coming” at Coachella, said Gabriel Martin, the city’s economic development manager. .
It will also be Coachella’s only major hotel – other nearby inns such as the Indian Palms Country Club & Resort can be found in Indio.
The hotel will provide new income and new jobs for the working-class town of 48,000, Martin said. Coachella financially supported the project by agreeing to a 50-50 share of the hotel’s resort taxes with the owners for 20 years or up to $ 25 million, whichever comes first.
The city is also allowing the complex to hold events until 4 a.m. after asking developers to build a 12-foot-high wall to protect its concert space from neighbors, Bram said.
Martin hopes more stations will join the Indigo at Coachella.
“Right now we are trying to capitalize on the market that is there,” he said. “We are really looking for potential development that can have a similar impact. “
The large-scale resort project is a sign of prolonged economic growth in the Riverside County Valley, which includes population centers such as Palm Springs, Rancho Mirage and Palm Desert. The valley has a deep tourist and convention base, offering 125 golf courses and over 600 tennis courts.
At the start of the decade, the valley was still suffering from an economic hangover from the mortgage crisis of the Great Recession, but has recovered in recent years with the help of tourists and new hotels to serve them, a said Joe Wallace, CEO of Coachella Valley Economic Partnership. business group.
“There has been an overabundance of hotel construction in the valley,” he said.
Much of it took place in Palm Springs, which has seen a resurgence over the past decade among visitors too young to remember when Frank Sinatra and other celebrities of his day made the wilderness hip and contributed. to create the mid-century architectural vibe for which it is known. .
Palm Springs has about 44,000 residents, but more than 2 million travelers a year pass through its airport and millions more arrive by car from Southern California, Wallace said.
Some of them are heading to the music festivals across the valley which have grown year by year, filling hotels, restaurants and bars, and giving retailers a boost, a he declared.
The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival has drawn around 100,000 people each of its two weekends in April, prompting attendees to spend lavishly if they want to stay just about anywhere in the valley.
Hoteliers can charge premium prices for about 10 prime days during festival season, Wallace said, which is similar to the Christmas season for retail traders.
“If you can get $ 500 a night for a room that normally costs $ 69,” he said, “it’s like renting it for a week.”
Coachella’s music events gained international fame and boosted desert travel, said hotel sales broker John Strauss of JLL.
Over the past five years, Coachella Valley “has grown into the music festival capital of the world,” Strauss said, “creating a lot of buzz in the market regionally, nationally and globally.”
Other events such as golf and tennis tournaments draw large crowds, he said, and snowbirds from Canada and cold states such as Minnesota head to peak season in the fall and winter to visit. bask in the heat. For millions of people living in Southern California, the wilderness is an accessible weekend getaway.
Demand has reached a point where building large hotels such as the Indigo in the Coachella Valley makes economic sense, Strauss said.
Average nightly rates for hotels with more than 200 rooms were $ 342 to $ 349 in April, up more than 5% from the same period last year, according to CBRE.