In three short years, Chula Vista’s bayfront will drastically change.
Developers and local leaders will break ground on Gaylord Pacific on Wednesday morning. The gigantic billion-dollar resort and convention center is expected to deliver thousands of jobs and millions of dollars into the regional economy.
RIDA Development will construct the 1,500-room hotel that will be operated by Gaylord Hotels, which is owned by Marriott. RIDA and Gaylord last teamed to construct Gaylord Rockies, in Aurora, Colorado, just outside Denver. RIDA representatives expect Gaylord Pacific to exhibit many of the same hallmark qualities of other Gaylord properties.
“Gaylord Hotels all have an atrium or grand lodge — It’s kind of the focal point, the centerpoint, of the resort,” said Deanne French, the director of marketing and public relations for Gaylord Rockies.
French gave NBC 7 a tour of the resort, which also contains half-million square feet of convention and ballroom space. The resort also has an indoor and outdoor water park, a lazy river, multiple restaurants and a sports bar that has the largest television screen in the state of Colorado that’s not in a stadium or ballpark.
RIDA Development said Gaylord Pacific on Chula Vista’s Bayfront will also have a signature atrium, ballroom and convention space, steakhouse and other restaurants, sports bar and an outdoor waterpark with its own lazy river.
“It really brings people to the hotel for staycations, vacations,” French said.
Gaylord Pacific is also expected to deliver jobs. A RIDA representative said construction alone will create 10,000 jobs over three years. The resort will support roughly 4,000 permanent jobs.
“We are a very large employer," French said. "All of our Gaylord properties are.”
The city of Chula Vista and Port of San Diego also expect Gaylord Pacific to inject millions into the local economy and spur development, similar to Petco Park’s impact on the East Village in San Diego.
“You can’t really gauge it just in terms of direct employment — it’s really the indirect employment as well and the number of firms that want to be here,” said Aurora mayor Mike Coffman
Coffman said Gaylord Rockies was a catalyst for incredible development by other businesses and hotels.
“There’s so many attendees at some of these conferences, they need additional rooms,” Coffman said with a smile.
There are also new neighborhoods and businesses popping up around Gaylord Rockies.
“Gaylord Rockies really brought something to this side of the Denver area,” French said.
“It really put us on the map, relative to Denver, and I think having a Gaylord in Chula Vista will put them on the map relative to San Diego,” Coffman said.
Chula Vista’s Bayfront Master Plan is 550 acres. Much of that will remain open or park space. The other areas are expected to be redeveloped, just like in Aurora.