Palm Springs’ New Downtown Project to Open Mid-November

Palm Springs’ New Downtown Project to Open Mid-November


The real estate firm at the center of a major downtown Palm Springs redevelopment project put out a list today of tenants slated to begin operating as early as September, encompassing restaurants, retail shops and a hotel.

Grit Development, formerly Wessman Development, which recently rebranded amidst bribery allegations against its former chief John Wessman, announced that the long-running revitalization project was nearing completion.

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“After a decade of planning and hard work, we’re thrilled to share the project is near completion and the line-up of tenants to date,” said Grit Development President Michael Braun, who took over following Wessman’s departure. “Dozens of tenants will open this summer with the Kimpton Rowan Hotel officially opening to the public in September. We are on track for a full grand opening in mid-November.”

Other tenants include H&M; Free People; Francesca’s; Kiehl’s; Tommy Bahama Restaurant and Bar; Starbuck’s Reserve; Stout Burgers & Beers; and Il
Corso. Furniture retailer West Elm opened last year, while Blaze Pizza began operating in March.

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“This line-up shows the quality and diversity of tenants to come,” Braun said. “Once complete, this project will put Palm Springs back on the map as a top destination. Visitors can enjoy staying at luxurious accommodations, shopping eclectic brands and dining at incredible restaurants — all within walking distance and surrounded by beautiful scenery and views few can match.”

The long-running downtown project continued despite felony charges of bribery and conspiracy against Wessman and fellow developer Richard Meaney, who are accused of paying former Mayor Steve Pougnet $375,000 to help push through downtown development projects that required council approval.

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Wessman and Meaney both face 12 years in state prison if convicted, while Pougnet would face 19 years if found guilty of corruption by a public official and perjury. The trio are slated to be arraigned in Riverside court on Friday.