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Bay Area Couple Buys Downtown Angels Hotel

Angels Camp, CA – After years of false starts, one of downtown Angels Camp’s landmark properties may finally be restored to its place as a crown jewel within the city-center.

Bay area couple Pero and MaryAnn Margaretic closed escrow last week on the downtown’s Art Deco-embellished Utica Hotel property, according to Destination Angels Camp President/CEO Anne Forrest.  A call to the new owners was not returned by press time. Forrest indicates that the pair has prior experience developing properties and are current owners in the Arnold and Murphys areas.

“The plans, from what I understand, are to renovate the whole building and have a hotel, restaurant, retail and to renovate the very famous bar-nightclub that was in the basement,” Forrest shares. As much of the space has literally been closed for decades, she notes the enormity of the project, adding, “It has to be brought back to code and everything.”

With the slowly improving economy, the time is ripe, Forrest says. Over the course of the past several years, the property was nearly sold a few times, most recently back in 2010 to a group led by Barden Stevenot. But the deal never finalized and the property remained in the hands of local business partners Richard Wilmshurst and Alan Corell, who purchased it in the late 1970’s. When last listed for sale in 2008 by Vintage Realty, it carried a price tag of $1.8 million.

“I think everybody is absolutely delighted, that it is sold — because there have been a couple of false starts over the last ten years – and that someone wants to get right in and renovate it and make it a functioning, operating business,” Forrest effuses. She adds that Destination Angels Camp will be working with the Margaretics to help identify and recruit businesses for the building. “Their plans aren’t finalized or anything like that, but we’ll do everything we can to help them locate good, reliable and experienced people to go in [to the retail spaces],” Forrest states.

In related news, the City of Angels Camp, in partnership with Ft. Worth, Texas-based marketers Buxton Company, is preparing to present an interim report on local retail metrics Tuesday, May 5, just before the Angels City Council meeting. As previously reported, through the partnership’s data mining efforts and findings, current — and prospective — business owners will receive value data on retail sales and possible “growth” areas. Open as part of a public workshop to anyone who is interested the presentation will begin at 4 p.m. at the firehouse (1404 Vallecito Road).