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The Fairmont Miramar Hotel

The Fairmont Miramar Hotel has been trying to convince the stakeholders (all of us) in Santa Monica that they must remodel their historic hotel on Ocean Avenue at Wilshire Blvd. They have stated that the newer tower's (circa 1960) rooms are too small and that their infrastructure is dated. I understand and I fully support a replacement tower and the upgrading of their infrastructure. 

However, instead of asking for a replacement 10 story tower facing Ocean Avenue they seek construction of a 21 story or more tower that would include 10 floors of Condos and an actual reduction of hotel rooms. They have spent thousands in local advertising discussing the virtues of the remodeled property without addressing the elephant in the room. We do not want Ocean Avenue to become a wall of tall buildings. A large part of the authenticity and organic feel of our beach city is that Santa Monica is a low rise, comfortable place. Combined with another three towers proposed for downtown the face of our city would be forever changed.

The owners of the Miramar have promised their third attempt at pulling the wool over Santa Monica's eyes soon. This wool will be just as scratchy as the last attempt with a new architect trying to sell us on unwanted height or density across from our most historic park. Last September after witnessing a seemingly endless round of emails between a citizen and the developers I fired off an email. It still applies and is reprinted below. 


"Alan and the Miramar development team -

It would appear to a normal observer by now that your "development plan" is flawed and has been since introduction. The Fairmont Miramar is a loved institution by Santa Monica residents and visitors. I have met with your team and with you to no avail. I suggested (and continue to suggest) that some of your advertising & marketing budget for your deeply flawed plan be given to help others in this city, that you redesign the plan to fit the needs of citizens and your visitors in this city, that you recognize the reality that some of the citizens who continue to criticize your plan may, indeed, be correct and that the Fairmont Miramar is not a failing institution in need of being the tallest building in the city. The height doesn't work, the condos don't work, the lie about "open space" for the city doesn't work, the constant bombardment with ads & fliers aren't convincing the people who live here that your plan is a "must have" and, frankly, the extreme arrogance and obstinance by Michael Dell and MSD are quite off putting. The legacy of the Miramar doesn't need isn't damaged, yet. The occupancy rate is outstanding. The restaurant works. The spa works. The bars work. Events are happening constantly in the hotel. The management team of the hotel has done a great job. The development management team...not so much. I know the newer tower is inadequate and could be replaced. I'm happy to support that. I'd love to see more hotel rooms, bigger rooms and a more modern infrastructure. However, you're offering less hotel rooms on a much more massive footprint. Rebuild your tower with a design that fits in a contemporary Santa Monica. Enlarge the rooms, build more rooms and give us a better plant. Forget the high rise condos. And...stop trying to pull the wool over our citizens's not working."

The bottom line...give us a remodel that doesn't add height to your square block and I'll love it. I'll bet our other citizens will as well.

Paid for by Committee to Elect Phil Brock For City Council - id#1392146 - 1328 Twelfth Street Santa Monica, Ca 90401
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