Fairmont to buy San Diego's Grand Del Mar

San Diego's Grand Del Mar resort is being sold to the Fairmont Hotels chain and a Northern California investor, although owner Doug Manchester will retain a minority stake.

The deal is expected to close next Wednesday, according to Manchester Financial Group president Dick Gibbons. As part of the change in management, the hotel will be re-branded as the Fairmont Grand Del Mar.

While the purchase price was not disclosed, Gibbons said that together, financier Richard Blum’s private equity firm, Blum Capital, and Fairmont’s parent company, FRHI Hotels & Resorts group, will be acquiring an 88-percent share of the resort, valued at $230 million. Manchester, who opened the 249-room Carmel Valley hotel in October 2007, will retain a 12-percent interest.

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Blum partnered last year with Toronto-based FRHI, which operates Fairmont and other luxury brands, to purchase the Claremont Hotel Club & Spa in Berkeley.