Last updated: 07:38 AM ET, Tue March 31 2015

Fairmont to Manage Acclaimed Grand Del Mar Resort

Hotel & Resort | Ryan Rudnansky | March 27, 2015

Fairmont to Manage Acclaimed Grand Del Mar Resort

Photo courtesy of The Grand Del Mar Facebook page

Luxury hotel operator Fairmont Hotels & Resorts is taking over management of the acclaimed Grand Del Mar resort in San Diego soon.

The luxurious property, which will be rebranded as the Fairmont Grand Del Mar, has received plenty of recognition throughout the years. The resort has been named a Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star property every year since 2012, and a AAA Five-Diamond property every year since 2009. In 2014, the resort was praised as the No. 1 hotel in the United States in the TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards.

Under a long-term management agreement, Fairmont will oversee day-to-day operations of the San Diego icon, while private equity firm Blum Capital stakes majority ownership of the resort. Manchester Financial Group and Fairmont’s parent company, FRHI Hotels & Resorts (FRHI), will both hold a minority interest in the AAA Five-Diamond hotel.

“With the beauty and climate of San Diego attracting travelers from all over the world, we’re extremely pleased to be adding an asset of this caliber to our hotel collection,” said William Fatt, chairman and chief executive officer of FRHI, via a release. “We’ve aligned with some great partners and are very happy to be working with Blum Capital and Richard Blum on this very exciting deal, which will further expand our already strong presence in the California market.”

“The acquisition of the Grand Del Mar, one of the most revered luxury hotels in the United States, aligns with our investment strategy and perfectly complements Fairmont’s unrivaled portfolio of hotels in the California market and abroad,” added Richard C. Blum, chairman and president of Blum Capital. “We look forward to showcasing this remarkable asset to an even greater audience and working with a celebrated brand like Fairmont to further enhance the property’s award-winning reputation.”

The property, which features Spanish and French influences and sports a Mediterranean design courtesy of famed American resort architect Addison Mizner, is located within the Los Penasquitos Canyon Preserve, ideally situated for outdoor enthusiasts and those who like to bask in the sun. It includes 249 guestrooms and suites, as well as eight two-story 4,500-square-foot villas.

On top of that, Fairmont Grand Del Mar features a 21,000-square-foot spa, an 18-hole Tom Fazio-designed golf course and clubhouse, six food and beverage venues (including the acclaimed Addison), a fitness center, boutique shops and 27,000 square feet of meeting space (including a 10,000-square-foot ballroom). The property’s hotel, restaurant and spa all received a Forbes Five-Star rating in 2015, making it one of only 10 destinations to share the distinction.

“The Manchester team, led by ‘Papa Doug’ Manchester, have built an incredible hotel product and coupled it with an expertly trained and highly engaged group of hotel colleagues. This formula has established the Grand Del Mar as one of the country’s truly outstanding hotels,” Fatt said. “We are excited to become stewards of this wonderful hotel and to continue this amazing performance, while also working with our partners – majority owner Blum Capital and minority partner Manchester Financial Group – to further strengthen and grow the resort’s luxury positioning.”

Fairmont and Richard Blum have a history together. They both acquired the Claremont Hotel Club & Spa in Berkeley last year, undertaking a multi-million dollar refurbishment project to revitalize the hotel and enhance its architecture.

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