Plans for new Sonoma hotel and apartment complex unveiled


Plans for a new 120-room hotel and a 72-unit affordable housing complex on the former Paul’s Resort site will be discussed by the Sonoma County Planning Commission at its meeting on Thursday, July 15.

The plaintiff, the Springs Investors Group, is a limited partnership run by local hotelier Norman Krug, 83.

The project site at 135 and 155 W. Verano Ave., and 175 E. Verano Ave., consists of three parcels totaling nearly 6 acres.

Affordable housing

The “100% affordable” rental apartments, to be called Verano Family Housing, are expected to house 170 residents on land bordered to the north by the Agua Caliente stream, to the east by the Lazzarotto mobile home park and to the west by the Finnish American Home. Association Apartments (FAHA). The new El Verano hotel will be adjacent along the southern border.

The Verano Family Housing site is outside the city limits of Sonoma and the proposal requires a land use density zoning change from the Sonoma County General Plan (from a density of 8 units per acre to 20 units per acre) as well as a zoning change from “commercial recreational and visitor services” to “high density residential”.

The 72 housing units will make up six 3-storey apartment buildings: 32 one-bedroom units, 22 two-bedroom units, 18 three-bedroom units, as well as a dedicated parking lot with 97 spaces.

While affordable housing development company MidPen Housing was associated with the project when its application was first submitted to Permit Sonoma, the non-profit builder of such Sonoma projects at Fetters Apartments and Celestina Garden Apartments is no longer associated with the project, according to spokesperson Tommy McDonald. . McDonald’s declined to provide details on why MidPen was no longer involved.

A new hotel in Springs

Plans offered for the three-story hotel include a small cafe and bar for guests on a rooftop observation deck and six-building apartment complex, across from Maxwell Park and one block away. from the Vineyard shopping center.

Bill Blum, the longtime former general manager of the MacArthur Place Hotel and Spa, told the Index-Tribune in 2018 that he was appointed by Krug as vice president of the planned hotel. “We didn’t really choose a brand or type of hotel, but we want to do it in an affordable price range,” Blum said at the time. Krug currently has two mid-priced hotels in the county, the 82-room Sonoma Valley Inn on Second Street West and the 163-unit Dry Creek Inn in Healdsburg. Both are affiliated with Best Western.

The proposed three-story Spanish Mission-style stucco hotel would be 92,411 square feet in size and include a swimming pool, gym and meeting rooms, a rooftop terrace and 138 dedicated parking spaces. It is expected to employ 40 full-time employees and 15 part-time or seasonal employees.

The project also includes a 15,000 square foot landscaped park, located at the southwest corner of the proposed project, on land belonging to the regional parks of Sonoma County, which would be maintained by the applicant. A total of 97 trees are proposed for removal, and 105 replacement trees will be planted.

The entry and exit of the two projects would be on Avenida Verano.

The process to date

Normal Krug and his investment group bought the 5.9-acre parcel in 2018 from the Sonoma Valley Health and Recreation Association, also known as Sonoma Splash, a struggling nonprofit recreation group find a developer for a planned community swimming pool complex. They have since teamed up with the school district to co-develop an aquatic complex on the Sonoma Valley High School campus.

If the project receives county approval to proceed, a yet to be determined affordable housing developer would purchase the project land in Krug. The two projects will be built and operated independently from this point on, depending on the project request.

Construction of the hotel complex and apartments is expected to take 18 to 24 months, with construction “starting sometime in 2021,” and the affordable housing project must begin before the hotel can be built, Permit staff say. Sonoma.

Applicants first submitted documents to the county describing the project in early 2019. The Sonoma Valley Citizens Advisory Committee unanimously approved the project in February 2020. The design review committee discussed the project in June 2020 and granted it preliminary approval. The final review and decision of the Supervisory Board and the Design Review Board will take place in separate hearings which have not yet been scheduled.

The staff of the planning department recommends that the approval of the permit to use the project, modification of the general plan and rezoning, be sent to the supervisory board. The Planning Commission will discuss the project at 1:05 p.m. on Thursday, July 15 at the Santa Rosa County offices, or the public can join the Zoom webinar at


Contact Lorna at [email protected]

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