Last night was a pivotal town hall meeting for the Town of Mammoth Lakes, with Rusty Gregory, CEO of Mammoth Mountain speaking out about the future development plans for the town.
Rusty said that of top priority is the development of the long promised Little Eagle 40,000’ base lodge and hotel. The current timeframe for breaking ground on this project is Summer of 2016 or 2017 at the latest.
The recent purchase of Summit and Bear mountains in Big Bear, combining with Mammoth and June Mountains was noted to be a good thing that will increase the traffic from Southern California and allow the pace of real estate development to increase and be funded more quickly here in Mammoth. There are also plans to expand Summit and Bear mountains and improve the outdated facilities at Mammoth Mountain’s Main Lodge and Canyon Lodge.
Rusty is definitely pro-development. He says that we have all of the components to become a world-class destination resort and need to have a positive outlook upon development in order to get there. Barry Sternlicht’s private investment funds will be completely out of the town in the next 3-4 years. We are currently in talks with a few large hotel investors about bringing them to Mammoth. Instead of going public, the mountain plans to continue to operate with private investors. Large hotel names were mentioned such as Marriot, Hilton and Ritz Carlton. Rusty’s vision is to give tax breaks to incentivize those companies to come here to Mammoth.
We expect to see 7 flights a day this winter, with the addition of a daily flight to Las Vegas and Denver. The FAA has approved the expansion of the airport pending an EIS report.
The land swap appears to be looking like it will go through, which involves the US government allowing for Mammoth Mountain to take ownership of the land under the Mammoth Mountain by trading a large parcel near Mono lake. It is planned to be a rider on the next Energy bill through congress and should be completed by next year.
Rusty also mentioned the revised and completed TOML general plan update as well which includes development of the Snowcreek area and also golf areas by Lodestar. There are talks of a convention center to bring in more business traffic that would go out by Snowcreek or on Lodestar.
Mammoth is currently using the newer ticketing systems and collaborating with online vendors like Expedia and Travelocity to sell lift tickets.
Finally, all of this sums up what was in the works before the big crash in 2007. Mammoth is now back on track to move forward with its previous plans to bring real estate development into key areas of Mammoth and also to grow the town into a world-class destination resort. Currently, Mammoth Mountain’s visitor is the wealthiest visitor on average to any ski resort in America. There’s no reason we can’t accomplish this renewed vision on the second time around if we are all working together.