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March 3, 2013
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California developer to construct new Breckenridge resort

A company out of California has announced plans for a new 126-unit time-share resort on the north end of Breckenridge.

Construction on the luxury lodging development is tentatively set to begin this year on a 6.5-acre parcel of land just north of the McCain property, near Tiger Road on Highway 9.

It will be the newest addition to a group of vacation properties owned by Welk Resorts, a family-owned real estate and hospitality company based in San Marcos, Calif.

"The opportunity to open in the beautiful alpine town of Breckenridge will not only provide additional value to our owners and guests who enjoy the Welk family of resorts, but also provide a unique experience for world-class skiing in the winter and unparalleled beauty and activity in the summer months for Welk's new resort property," the company's president of sales and marketing, Michael Gehrig, stated in a recent news release.

The resort will include one-bedroom suites and one- and two-bedroom villas and will feature a number of amenities including a fitness center, game room, movie room, indoor-outdoor pool, hot tub and barbecue areas, according to the Welk statement.

A meetings center, lobby, housekeeping and maintenance facility, half a dozen employee-housing units and more than 100 parking spaces are also part of the approved development plan.

Welk Resorts representatives could not immediately confirm how many jobs the new resort would create or whether the positions would be hired locally.

Town officials say the parcel of land where the resort will be constructed has been zoned for development for several years.

"There was an area that was approved years ago," Breckenridge spokeswoman Kim Dykstra-DiLallo said. "Part of it got built, and then the whole financial crisis came about."

The two-to-three-story Welk Resorts development cleared planning last year and the company closed escrow on the property in January.

In a 2012 letter to the Breckenridge Planning Commission, developers described a resort that would respect the history of the town, "celebrate the present setting and emerging development" and deliver sustainable planning and design.

"It's all about creating an experience for the future owners and their guests while at the same time being a good neighbor to the present and future residents of the area," the letter states.

The approved design calls for a landscaping buffer around parts of the building, although planning commission documents address a 72-unit building, not the 126-unit structure described in Welk's recent announcement.

The resort is set to be constructed less than a mile from the northern McCain property, a 125-acre parcel of town-owned land that many community residents have called for preserving as open space, creating a scenic gateway into Breckenridge on the Highway 9 corridor.

The Welk Resorts portfolio currently includes six vacation properties in San Diego, Maui, the Palm Desert area in California, Branson, Mo., and Cabo San Lucas in Mexico.

The company's average owner is 47 years old and has an income of $90,000 a year, according to Welk executives.


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The Summit Daily Updated Mar 5, 2013 03:25PM Published Mar 3, 2013 10:31PM Copyright 2013 The Summit Daily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.