FACT: The Retreat is being developed by Gary Safady. Gary, an avid environmentalist, has lived in Benedict Canyon at the property along with his children for more than a decade.
FACT: This claim is simply NOT true. The Retreat is a one-of-a-kind boutique hideaway, and according to an economic analysis prepared by CBRE, The Retreat is estimated to increase property values.
FACT: We have revised our project based on the feedback from our community and have reduced our project by 43%. We are proposing a 59-room hotel, with 302 parking spaces, and 8 homes.
FACT: The Retreat will be good for Benedict Canyon and its uniquely designed integrated plan fits seamlessly into the canyon, is nearly invisible from surrounding streets and provides amenities to the community, a dog park, enhance infrastructure and increases property values.
FACT: There are numerous non-residential properties ranging in size throughout the Santa Monica Mountains, including:
- The Getty Center
- Hotel Bel-Air
- MountainGate Country Club
- Beverly Glen Shopping Center
- Shopping centers in Laurel and Roscomare Canyons
- Skirball Cultural Center and many more.
Many of these projects were approved by limiting development and uses in a specific plan. These projects did not result in a conversion of Benedict Canyon into commercial uses.
FACT: The Retreat will NOT have a gate right at the entrance on Hutton. There is approximately 600 feet of internal road leading to the valet, providing ample room to reduce any notable vehicle impact at this location. In fact, The Retreat will have one of the longest approaches in Southern California.
The Retreat will have sufficient on-site parking for workers and guests, which will be invisible from the street. This will ensure that any new cars won’t end up on neighborhood streets.
FACT: The Retreat will be voluntarily preparing a full mobility plan that will use the best-practices available to reduce employee and guest vehicle trips. A comprehensive traffic analysis will be completed and will be available to the public once it’s finalized.
FACT: No new roads outside of The Retreat will be built. The Retreat will improve existing internal private roads, and construct one new internal road to provide access from Hutton Drive.
FACT: The Retreat will be a tranquil, boutique escape catering to those seeking a quiet stay in a natural setting. The project has been thoughtfully designed to reduce notable noise that may be audible beyond the property line, and all sound levels will be strictly monitored.
FACT: In the City of Los Angeles, development projects are decided on their own merits. This project will not set a precedent, as each project is individually considered and would be required to go through an extensive public process, just like The Retreat.
The Retreat will have far fewer impacts than what is allowed under the existing zoning, which would allow for multiple tracks of large homes without screening to be built, no specific plan or continuity; and alter the ridge line. The Retreat will be mostly invisible from many nearby streets preserving the ridgeline while maintaining a commitment to environmental and wildlife stewardship and respect the natural topography of the canyon. No laws need to be changed for The Retreat since local and state rules specifically have a process for unique circumstances like The Retreat.
FACT: The retaining walls are necessary to ensure the ridgeline and the canyon’s natural topography is preserved. Most, if not all, of the retaining walls will not be visible from nearby streets. The retaining walls will be screened with landscaping.
FACT: Just the opposite! The Retreat will improve safety in our community. Infrastructure in Benedict Canyon will be improved with better safety access and voluntarily created conservation areas, guaranteeing The Retreat will always be approximately 90% open-space.
FACT: The Retreat will preserve the vast majority of existing trees on the property, and will add more than 1,000 new trees to the property, substantially improving the tree-canopy and helping to prevent landslides and flooding; thus creating an ecological and environmental sanctuary.
FACT: The Retreat will use state-of-the-art sustainable building materials that are cleaner, safer, and reduce truck trips when compared to conventional construction.
A nearly “balanced” site is planned, which means there will be no need for any significant removal. Although no earth hauling off-site is anticipated, a provision for minimal removal of excess dirt, if necessary, is included in project’s application as a precaution.
FACT: The Retreat will be a tranquil, boutique escape catering to those seeking a quiet stay in a natural setting. The project has been thoughtfully designed to reduce notable noise that may be audible beyond the property line, and all sound levels will be strictly monitored. The Retreat, has removed its dedicated ballroom space, thus, will not have the capacity for big parties, unlike the Bel-Air and Beverly Hills Hotel. Further, because guests at The Retreat will expect peace and quiet, having large parties would be inconsistent with the nature and serenity of The Retreat.