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Paying Attention to the Details
May, 2021 - Issue #199

Focusing on the Guest Experience
Since the early stages of this project, our most important consideration was on how we could provide our guests the best experience when visiting the Sand Canyon Resort. Within a mere 40-minute drive from Los Angeles, our visitors will be able to see spectacular scenery and relax amidst serene mountain vistas. Although I have had the opportunity to travel to many famous resorts, I believe this place offers more due to the extraordinary natural beauty of Canyon Country. It's difficult to describe in words, but tranquility, peace and joy come to mind.
Our design process for the resort facilities and amenities was guided by the desire to offer a wonderful guest experience. The three guiding principles of our design process were:
"Our guests will be able to enjoy all-around views to the beautiful landscapes - the Canyon Country hills, and the San Gabriel Mountains beyond."
One: Maximize the views towards natural surroundings.
Sitting within 400 acres of a lush golf course surrounded by oak trees and beautiful neighboring homes, the buildings were oriented on the site to facilitate the visual relationship with this natural setting. Once built, our guests will be able to enjoy all-around views to the beautiful native and golf course landscapes, the Canyon Country hills and the San Gabriel Mountains beyond. The intention is for these natural vistas and landscapes to be the highlight of our guests' visit while at Sand Canyon Resort.
The resort's best feature, its natural setting, is further adorned most years by amazingly-colorful wildflower blooms. Thanks to the sufficient rain we had for the past few years, even rare wildflowers that have not been seen in a long time have flourished in abundance and splendor. We are preserving a significant portion of the resort as native landscape to foster these spectacular blooms and super blooms.
Two: Impart an elegant interpretation of California rustic design.
We took inspiration from the past and developed a palette of elements, materials and colors that complement the natural setting of the project. The architectural vocabulary was kept subtle and low key, more focused on the details that enhance the guest experience and less on being ostentatious. We wanted to elevate the design and not simply be a rote imitation of historical styles.
Three: Reduce the overall mass of the buildings, simplify their forms and be sustainable.
The intention was to create buildings that do not call attention to themselves but instead allow for a better appreciation of the beautiful setting. Our aim was for the resort to blend seamlessly with the landscape, in particular, keeping the height of the hotel building as low as possible. Simplifying the overall massing of the buildings also allows us to take advantage of the latest construction techniques. For example, prefabricated steel stud framing not only shortens the construction time but minimizes construction noise. The structural panels that arrive on site are assembled without the use of loud nail guns or hammering.
Additionally, the resort will be 100-percent solar powered. We continue to explore other sustainable building materials and products to help create environmentally-friendly facilities.
We believe that excellent customer service and attention to detail is what will ultimately distinguish the Sand Canyon Resort. Our mission will be to provide a high-quality, family-friendly resort environment with the purpose of creating memorable moments.

"Relax in the spacious lobby lounge
with views of the mountains while live
piano music plays in the background."
An Enhanced Experience
We want our guests to experience something special which they may not encounter at other resorts. Upon arrival, our hosts will promptly offer the guests complimentary refreshments and encourage them to relax in the spacious lobby lounge with views of the mountains while live piano music plays in the background. Meanwhile, the latest technology is used to expedite the check-in process and their luggage is sent to their room. Our goal is for our guests to quickly
start enjoying the resort's amenities.
Since resort guests typically do not leave the property during their stay, we will be providing an array of dining options that go beyond their expectations. The three-meal buffet restaurant will offer a wide variety of international cuisines so guests can explore and discover different dishes every day. There will also be a restaurant dedicated to regional Italian meals with daily, weekly and seasonal menus; a cafe with an espresso bar and a great assortment of freshly-baked goods and sandwiches; a small bar and grill for less-formal meals in the hotel's upper lounge; and lastly, a cozy pub with a classic "pub menu" and the ability to watch one's favorite sporting event.
Guests will be able to enjoy many resort amenities such as the beautifully-landscaped family pool and sundeck, the fully-equipped gym and yoga studio, as well as different outdoor recreation options that include more than two miles of walking trails, a tennis court, two pickleball courts and an nine-hole pitch-and-putt course. The spa will have carefully-selected options for relaxation and treatments like body scrubs and massages as well as mudrooms, saunas, Jacuzzi and a swimming pool. All of these special experiences are offered so guests can revitalize themselves during their stay.

"We will be offering children art classes, including drawing, painting, ceramics, collages and jewelry making; fun and educational science experiment activities; and cooking classes using vegetables grown in our own organic garden. Outdoor activities will include nature hikes, treasure hunts and horseback riding."
A Family-friendly Experience
Our goal was to create a family-friendly resort where parents could relax knowing that their children are happily enjoying programs tailored to their interests and ages. We will be offering them art classes, including drawing, painting, ceramics, collages and jewelry making; fun and educational science experiment activities; and cooking classes using vegetables grown in our own organic garden. Outdoor activities will include nature hikes, treasure hunts and horseback riding. The intention is to provide the kids enriching activities instead of spending more time looking at their phones.
Parents can enjoy time with their kids at the playground, the miniature golf course or the family pool, which will have a waterslide, splash pad and separate toddler's pool. For those guests with four-legged family members, our resort is pet friendly and will offer a dog park where they can run freely.

"What can we do to create the best resort experience in Southern California? We realize that it means paying attention to details."
A High-quality Experience
I have wondered many times, "What can we do to create the best resort experience in Southern California?" We realize that it means paying attention to details. Whenever my wife and I have had the opportunity to visit the most popular golf resorts, such as Pebble Beach, Pelican Hill, Aviara and La Costa, we checked the size, height and finish of the room. We carefully touched mattresses, beddings and furniture. We carried a laser measuring instrument and sized everything, including ceiling heights, the floor areas of the lobbies, lounges, dining and ballrooms. Unlike previous trips in the past, we are now interested in all aspects of the resorts and are implementing the best things in our project.
We will elegantly decorate the lobby, lounge and guest rooms with high-quality finishes so that as soon as guests enter the hotel, they will be wow'd. The resort will provide very comfortable accommodations during their stay. While new hotel rooms have shrunk in size to 300 square feet or less, our typical guest room will be over 450 square feet and include a spacious balcony, all appointed with
high-quality furnishings. The bathroom will be luxuriously fitted with a freestanding bathtub, separate glass-enclosed shower, a smart toilet, two sink vanity and ample countertop space.
I never imagined developing a resort when I first took over the golf course, but once I did, it was exciting to start this new venture. It has its challenges and I discover new things everyday. It is a complex process, almost as if trying to create a beautiful and timeless work of art on a blank canvas. Our sincere hope is that the Sand Canyon Resort will become a recognized destination cherished for its natural setting, its amenities, and its 5-star service.
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