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updated: Jan 31, 2013, 8:27 PM

By Edhat Subscriber

What is an update on the 100 bed hostel which was to be built by Fess Parker?

Comments in order of when they were received | (reverse order)

 COMMENT 369642 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-01-31 08:35 PM

It is for overseas tourists, not for local clientele. I grew up here and understand tourism is a large part of our economy, but want it to be downsized as I think we are overdoing it in our small town. If you come here at least make an attempt to speak the tongue.


 COMMENT 369644P agree helpful negative off topic

2013-01-31 08:41 PM

Did Fess Parker uphold the agreement which was part of having his Red Lion / DoubleTree approved?


 COMMENT 369646 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-01-31 08:46 PM

you really didn't think that was ever going to happen, did you?


 COMMENT 369653P agree helpful negative off topic

2013-01-31 08:57 PM

What good is a legal agreement unless it is honored?


 COMMENT 369655 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-01-31 08:58 PM

The second hotel was never built so why would he build and pay for a hostel that was just a part of the agreement. for a hotel to get built....Everything is at a standstill.


 MESARATS agree helpful negative off topic

2013-01-31 09:54 PM

I was wondering the same thing. It is almost done, but has been in a state of limbo for a at least a month


 COMMENT 369681 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-01-31 11:23 PM

Fess Parker followed the Rupert Murdoch school of business. Make any promise that will let you get your way, then ignore the promise.


 COMMENT 369687P agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 12:05 AM

JULIAN. You said it all.


 COMMENT 369690P agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 12:15 AM

In case the OP wanted to know if there is a hostel, rather than whether Fess Parker built one, there is. It's near the train station and the website is http://www.sbhostel.com/


 ROGER DODGER agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 05:43 AM

I think he's building it somewhere else now.


 COMMENT 369706P agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 06:52 AM

The Youth Hostel Parker was required (blackmailed some say) to build is the big, empty, new white building at 12 E Montectio Street directly across from the Fish Enterprise. I'd like to know who chose that site. As a commercial enterprise, on exceptionably valuable, only steps away from the beach property, it could have provided the city with a lot of dough from property and sales tax.


 COMMENT 369713 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 07:07 AM

Fess Parker will not be building anything unless it is in heaven! I met him years ago when I worked at San Marcos bowling alley and he was developing the manufactured home park just to the north.
He was a very kind and polite person. Never assumed that everyone should know him. Asked me if it would be all right if he had someone call him at the lanes. I said, "Of course". He started to leave to go back to the coffee shop, then turned around and said to me, :"The name is Parker, maam. Thank you very much".
There was a phone booth at the end of the concourse that he had to stand on the outside, lean in to dial. One tall man.


 COMMENT 369723 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 07:22 AM

Developers are a plague on towns and cities. Pure greed.


 FLICKA agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 07:26 AM

A poster thinks we should downsize tourism? Visitors should learn our language? Why? Coming for a 2 week stay doesn't mean it's necessary to speak English. Guess I just don't get it. We're a tourist town, have been since the 19th century, supports our economy.


 COMMENT 369741P agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 07:51 AM

Fess Parker was blackmailed into agreeing to build the hostel IF he was allowed to build another hotel. The city never allowed him to build the other hotel hence no hostel. It had nothing to do with building the current Doubletree Resort. Fess had to get the voter's permission to build it as the city council fought him tooth and nail.


 COMMENT 369764 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 08:25 AM

Compare the potential revenue a hostel would bring in compared to say, hotel row down in Marina Del Rey.

We should have 4 and 5-star hotels along the beach. Budget problems solved.


 COMMENT 369767 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 08:27 AM

It looks to me like it's nearly finished, near the Spearment Rhino, of all places. It was indeed a pre-condition for construction of Parker's proposed boutique hotel on Cabrillo just west of the his existing DoubleTree. But I didn't think that the hostel was only for foreign visitors. The proposed hotel has been just a hole in the ground for years now.

I don't know what the status of either project is given the recent tourism market. Does anybody know?


 COMMENT 369768 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 08:29 AM

Fess was a nice man and a gentleman but also a shrewd businessman and developer. He was not amenable to kissing up to the City staff and wining and dining council members like their favorite shmoozer Bill Levy and his band of naive and disgruntled investors who managed to sell a bill of goods to the city called La Entrada. As a result, Parker was hassled Levy was not. Now neither of these two foolhardy projects are going anywhere because common sense was lacking at City hall in approving La Entrada, and proposing to narrow that busy stretch of State street and then insisting Parker build a "hostel" if he wanted to build a profitable hotel nearby.


 COMMENT 369777P agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 08:40 AM

Mr. Parker wasn't forced to sign anything; he chose to receive certain concessions in return for the hostel He was a shrewd businessman.


 COMMENT 369780 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 08:41 AM

The hostel is under the control of Brian Kelly, a Boston developer who is buying up a bunch of properties in the Funk Zone and kicking the artists out. Boooooo! He made some deal to have to finish off the hostel project in exchange for some concessions from the City about his other projects. (Bay Cafe, Bee Bop Burgers, Donald Davis' old studio, Road House Cafe to name a few). You can see here what they do when they enter a town. http://www.eastern-re.com/management/BrianKelly.html
Big chain stores and gentrification to come.


 RESIDENT agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 09:51 AM

The youth hostel was a requirement from the California Coastal Commission that oversees the use of the coastal zone. Access to the coastal areas by all is a primary consideration for them.

So a 100 bed youth hostel was required to offset the luxury hotel that Parker wanted to build across the street from the Doubletree. When the recession hit and construction funding dried up both projects were put on hold.

You can learn more facts (rather than rumors) by doing a search on the City's web site.


 COMMENT 369864 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 10:42 AM

The search you suggest RESIDENT would reveal that the California Hotel (considered somewhat of a landmark) was to be restored and retrofitted for earthquake safety. The rooms there would be "affordable" in exchange for the "time share" condos Levy proposed. This was all overseen by the Coastal Commission working hand in hand with the City staff. The City allowed Levy to evade expensive earthquake retrofitting required of many other building owners. The Coastal Commission gave "La Entrada" the nod because of this preservation of afforbable accomodations or the replacement of affordable hotel rooms supposedly being created or relocated as part of the project. Take a look at what's left of the California hotel!


 COMMENT 369866 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 10:44 AM

962 - when you travel to foreign countries, do you speak the language? Of course that is not a prerogative of our visitors and if they can stay cheap, let them. Tourism is SB's #1 economy.


 COMMENT 369900 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 11:37 AM

Fess Parker purchased a former Shell Gas Station location about 80 W. Montecito St. opposite the Morton Bay Fig tree to serve as the site for a youth hostel in order to gain his permits for building the Fess Parker Red Lion Inn. I was a broker on that sale. My guess is the transaction took place in late 1993 or early 1994. Nothing ever came of it and other sites were substituted in subsequent years.


 RESIDENT agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 12:05 PM

Re. The Californian Hotel, isn't that being rebuilt?

The reason the front facade was maintained is that it is/was a historic structure. So they were required by the Historic Landmarks Commission to save the front part that preserves the appearance. At some point the new owners of the Levy project are supposed to rebuild it along with the rest of the project. We'll see how that goes.

Meanwhile the Youth Hostel up the street also languishes unfinished and unusable.


 COMMENT 369924 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 12:13 PM

Uncle Fesster tried, lied and then died. Looks like legal action will be necessary to force his estate to fulfill his agreement.


 COMMENT 369987 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 02:32 PM

While they're at it, can they force Wendy McCaw to honor her agreement to provide beach access next to her property in Hope Ranch? Or is the City too chicken to fight with her too?


 ROGER DODGER agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 02:33 PM

Didn't he also pay to have Fire Station 2 built on Cacique street also? I heard that many years ago..


 COMMENT 370021 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-01 03:47 PM

Regarding Wendy's beach access easement, it's there and fully usable, between the bluff and the water. She and her lawyers took it all the way to the Supreme Court and lost, as did the Padaro Lane people down between Summerland and Carpinteria. One case went to the CA Supreme Court, one went to the U.S. Supreme Court, and the public won both times.

The little-known secret is that a vertical access easement exists at 3443 Padaro Lane, but hasn't been opened for public use. The pathway's there and has been for years, but is gated off. The county's Toro Canyon Plan has requirements to be met before this access path may be opened officially--parking, trash, and biological human waste issues need to be addressed. Most times you can walk around the point from Santa Claus beach to Padaro beach, so it's really not something to take to the mattresses.

Just call me "one who was there, and knows." Or Ishmael.


 COMMENT 370143 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-02 02:46 AM

The city refused Fess's desire to build the second hotel BECAUSE he never fulfilled his contractual obligations for what is now the Double Tree. He was supposed to do improvements that he never did in the area between Cabrillo and the train tracks. That is why he was refused the second hotel.


 COMMENT 370174P agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-02 07:58 AM

Thank you for the info YPYETR. Interesting info. Who owns the property where the second hotel was to be?
Did Fess fulfill the requirement for the hostel? My understanding is his kids are more cooperative, nicer stewards of the business.


 COMMENT 370317 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-02 04:27 PM

Sad to see so much mis-information being spread. If you really care whats going on...get your facts from the City.


 COMMENT 370407P agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-03 05:19 AM

Which department would one obtain information such information from the city? In person or by phone? How does one know the information is correct? Edhat is a forum and through the input of many readers often one can gain a fuller view of an issue. Thank you Edhat and Edhat readers.


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