|By Mark Prado, The Marin Independent
Journal, Novato, Calif.McClatchy-Tribune Regional News
April 6, 2010 --Sausalito's Casa Madrona Hotel & Spa has a new management company to run the landmark.
Jackson Hole, Wyo.-based Terra Resort Group will run the Casa Madrona Hotel & Spa, which was sold on the steps of San Rafael City Hall for $11.4 million in February as part of a foreclosure sale. James P. Knell, chairman of SIMA Management Corp. of Santa Barbara, offered the sole bid for the hotel at the auction.
"Casa Madrona is a property that is revered for its history," said Jamie Yarrow, president of Terra. "We intend to restore this hotel to its premiere status within this world-class destination."
The 63-room hotel, in the center of the city on Bridgeway and Bulkley Avenue, includes a 3,000-square-foot spa and 5,000 square feet of event space.
The hillside property, included on the National Register of Historic Places, dates to 1885 when it was built as a private mansion for the W.G. Barrett family of San Francisco.
Sold at the turn of the century and converted into a hotel, the Victorian structure has undergone a couple renovations since the 1980s in which cottages and upscale rooms connected by a series of stairs and hallways were added. All rooms offer balcony views of San Francisco, Angel Island and Richardson Bay. In 2002 the property expanded, with the adjoining three-story building converted to hotel use.
The assessed value of the three parcels that make up the hotel is $16.6 million, according to the county assessor's office.<>The historic site was taken over in 2008 by the FDIC when owners defaulted on their loan, causing Georgia-based Integrity Bank to fail and putting the foreclosure in motion. The unpaid loan balance was more than $24 million. >
The FDIC had an asset management firm settle unpaid hotel taxes with Sausalito. A Texas-based hotel management firm was installed to oversee day-to-day operations.
The hotel supplies about 40 percent of the city's total hotel tax.
"Casa Madrona is a truly unique asset with its unsurpassed location and stunning views," Knell said. "We were thrilled to have the opportunity to purchase it."
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