Construction workers have begun work on a 34-room boutique hotel that will be privately operated by independent developer Yogesh Patel and located at the northwest corner of First Street and Long Beach Boulevard.
Replacing a surface lot that had been under Patel’s operation, the Gilmar-designed proposal reaches back to October of 2015 when Patel first applied for conditional approval. (Given the lot size is less than 50,000 square feet, his plans did not have to face the Planning Commission for approval.)
According to city staff, Patel returned in July 2017 with modified designs and reconfigured the parking to include mechanical lifts that will auto-park the cars of patrons; this change was approved by staff.
“The developer has had some informal discussions with staff about further changes to the project and I understand there are cost concerns with the construction but we have come to no agreement on further changes,” said Planning Manager Christopher Koontz. “The city is seeking to support hotel projects and development in Downtown but at the same time is committed to upholding the design standards in the Downtown Plan.”
While concerns of cost may be a block, Patel has begun moving forward: He has secured building permits for the site before pre-construction meetings were held in November.
As of now, the project will go forward as proposed last year: A five-story building with 34-rooms in a rather generic design that harkens more to last decade’s geometric, minimalist aesthetic more akin to housing developments than contemporary boutique hotel design, which has been leaning toward the ornate and unique throughout this century.
Two large guest room suites will be facing east toward Long Beach Boulevard on floors two through four while the rest of the rooms, mostly doubles, will be facing south toward the Transit Mall and north toward the surface lot at the southwest corner of Broadway and Long Beach Boulevard.
The timeline for the project, as well as details on construction changes, are unknown as Patel has yet to return a call for comment.
The hotel is located at 107 Long Beach Blvd.
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