OROVILLE, CA-Meridian Capital Group of New York has been retained by an undisclosed landowner here to bring in a joint venture investment and development partner for a fully entitled 300-acre destination spa, resort and mixed-use development project on Lake Oroville. Senior broker Jennifer Cherney tells GlobeSt.com her client is looking to sell a majority interest in the property to a qualified and well renowned developer that would be primarily responsible for the overall planning, budgeting, design, branding and construction of the project.

Based upon the approved plans already in place, phase one of the project would feature a destination luxury resort hotel and spa, a wellness center, single-family lots, condominium units, duplex townhouses, office and commercial space, and a five-acre park. Phase two would include an 18-hole golf course and residential estates. The estimated $300-million development is envisioned as a destination resort community that also would host conferences, weddings and corporate retreats.

“We’ve really just begun to market it in the past few weeks; we will be putting together the entire capital structure, both the experience and equity,” Cherney tells GlobeSt.com. “We do have people that are interested who meet the qualifications, people coming out to look at the property.”

Oroville is in Butte County, about 90 minutes from Sacramento and just under three hours from San Francisco. Butte is the most populated county north of Sacramento, and recently has received numerous accolades. Kiplinger’s recently named it one of the top five places to retire and the San Francisco Chronicle said the area is one of the best places in the state to buy property. In addition to the lake, area attractions include local vineyards and olive orchards, wildlife reserves and historic sites.

Lake Oroville itself is considered one of the top recreation lakes in Northern California, but developable land on the lake is precious. Only about 8% of lakefront property is developable, says Cherney; most of the rest of the property surrounding the 900-acre lake is protected as a State Recreation Area.

“One of the main things we are looking for is a national spa to anchor the community,” says Cherney, acknowledging brands such as Golden Door, Canyon Ranch and Miraval without saying whether anyone in particular has expressed interest. “There has been some interest from some of the top spas in the country; the community will definitely be branded.”

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