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WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA-Sunset Strip’s landmark House of Blues will get a facelift as part of a $60 million project that will surround the flagship property with 35,000 sf of retail space, a seven level underground garage and a 139-unit apartment and condo development.

Rene Bernasconi, with developer Gold Mountain Enterprises, tells GlobeSt.com that construction is set to begin in the fourth quarter of 2004 to turn land surrounding the concert venue into the first mixed-use development on the Sunset Strip.

“I think it will be a landmark, mixed-use project for Sunset,” says Bernasconi, who anticipates that construction on the project, the first mixed-use development in West Hollywood, will be completed by 2006. The project, which will surround the House of Blue’s first venue, will have “a European, Mediterranean, Italian courtyard flair,” he says, noting that the design is still undergoing revision.

David Rifkind of GSP/Rifkind Capital Advisors tells GlobeSt.com that his firm has secured a $14.8 million bridge loan for RCB Holdings and Gold Mountain Enterprises, the companies that own the property where the House of Blues is located, to fund a portion of the project. “The bridge loan has allowed them to buy out a past partner and give them 100% ownership of the property along with additional funds to allow them to contribute to a new lease for an expanded House of Blues that will be the anchor tenant,” says Rifkind.

However, Eric Burghammer, with the House of Blues, says the venue has no present plans for expansion.

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