Two years after filing for entitlements with the City of Los Angeles, investor Gary Safady is moving forward with scaled-back plans for a boutique hotel in the Beverly Crest neighborhood.
The proposed development, called The Retreat at Benedict Canyon, would span a roughly 33-acre site located at 9704-9712 W. Oak Pass Road and other nearby addresses. The northern portion of the development site, consisting of just over 16 acres of land, would be dedicated to a 59-room hotel, accompanied by restaurant space, a spa, a screening room, and other guest amenities.
The hotel would be spread between 18 separate buildings, the largest of which would stand five stories in height. However, the bulk of the proposed buildings are described as two-story bungalow-type structures.
Access to the hotel would be provided largely via car - 260 parking stalls are planned within the project - but also through a proposed funicular railway, which would connect the sloping development site.
The southern section of the property would be developed with eight single-family homes, ranging from 12,000 to 48,000 square feet in size. Roughly 12.5 acres of the southern site would be used for green spaces such as outdoor decks and pathways.
All existing structures on the site - including houses owned and occupied by Safady - would be demolished prior to construction of the proposed development.
A project website describes The Retreat as an "ecological haven," which is designed by architecture firm Saota to hug the contours of Benedict Canyon.
According to the website, the developer intends to retain 75 percent of the property as open space - including a proposed dog park - and also intends to add 1,000 trees to the property.
Construction of The Retreat is expected to occur in multiple phases, starting in 2022 and continuing through 2028, according to an initial study published by the Planning Department. That timeline is contingent on the approval of project entitlements by the City of Los Angeles - including a zone change and a general plan amendment.
Safady's current plans for The Retreat have been significantly downsized from plans submitted to the City of Los Angeles in 2018, when the project had called for the construction of a larger 99-room hotel.
Despite the revised plan, the project has faced staunch opposition from residents of the surrounding community, who have launched a website arguing that the project will worsen traffic congestion and create a fire hazard. The group, Save Our Canyon, displays a letter signed by Los Angeles City Councilmember Paul Koretz expressing opposition to the earlier version of the project.