San Diego Business Journal

Irvine Firm Buys Estancia La Jolla Hotel

Friday, December 2, 2011

Irvine-based Pacific Hospitality Group LLC announced on Dec. 1 that it has acquired the 210-room Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa. The property at 9700 N. Torrey Pines Road had been placed on the market in June by the seller, Los Angeles-based Lowe Enterprises.

A purchase price was not immediately disclosed. The brokerage firm Atlas Hospitality Group, which was not involved in the transaction, has estimated that the property would go for approximately $63 million, or $300,000 per room, based on market conditions and recent Southern California sales of comparable properties.

Kory Kramer, Pacific Hospitality Group’s vice president of acquisitions and development, said by phone that the company will also take over management of the hotel following a transition period of approximately 60 days. The property is currently managed by Destination Hotels & Resorts.

Kramer said the new owner will focus on growing the hotel’s leisure and group conference business, especially activity surrounding nearby health and technology-related companies.

The Spanish hacienda-style Estancia was developed by Lowe and opened in 2004. The 10-acre property includes three restaurants and lounges, an 8,000-square-foot spa and a 26,000-square-foot conference facility.

The property was included on a Conde Nast Traveler “hot list” of best new hotels for 2005-2006 and has earned a Four Diamond rating from AAA.

Jones Lang LaSalle represented Lowe in the hotel sale, and Pacific Hospitality was advised by PKF Consulting and Eagle Four Equities LLC.

Pacific Hospitality Group, also known as PHG, operates seven hospitality properties totaling more than 1,400 rooms. According to a statement, its other properties include The Meritage Resort and Spa in Napa, Doubletree Irvine Spectrum and Crowne Plaza Anaheim Resort.

— Lou Hirsh