Putting Off the Ritz: No Hotel Destined for Downtown Napa?

As a blogger, I feel as though I have the journalistic privilege of running with any rumor I please, so long as I remain completely upfront about it. Sometimes these rumors prove true, sometimes not. But I did wish to mention that the Ritz-Carlton Hotel, which had been officially delaying its new development in Napa’s Oxbow District (ever since the U.S. economy tanked last year), has now allegedly pulled the plug on its planned Napa location. The Ritz-Carlton launched the project over three years ago, when construction of the Ritz-Carlton Napa was first announced back in April 2007, after a deal had been struck between the luxury hotel chain and a Florida-based developer. Just over one year later, in July 2008, the City of Napa approved the massive venture, which was slated to cover 10 acres of the Napa riverfront, and cost an estimated $270 million. The Ritz-Carlton would have featured 351 rooms, charging an average of $500 per night (which does seem almost absurd as the U.S. economy continues to struggle).

Of course, no Ritz-Carlton also means no accompanying Ritz-Carlton restaurant, which would’ve added an interesting dimension to the Napa Valley’s culinary scene. All in all, the City of Napa loses quite a bit of cache if this rumor proves true — a Ritz-Carlton would’ve really classed up the joint, as well as provide plenty of tax revenue and jobs. For what it’s worth, I’m not at all clear on the economic factors that may have contributed to this recent decision, or whether the decision was even mutual or one-sided. I’ve just heard that the deal went belly up, plain and simple. We’ll see if this rumor pans out, but I will mention that the same exact source who divulged this tidbit was very early with the Morimoto Napa rumor back in June 2009, and you heard that one here first, remember?

2 comments to Putting Off the Ritz: No Hotel Destined for Downtown Napa?

  • I understand it would have provided a lot of jobs, but I would be happy if this rumor were true. Something I love about Napa is that it is world-famous, but still down-home. I think the Ritz would bring the snob factor the valley, something that has happily been non-existant (other than the tourists).

  • well crap. I just bought a house off the insersection of First and Silverado hoping that Ritz would further “posh-ify” the Oxbow district.

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