HOLLYWOOD (CBSMiami) — Now that it secured funding, a $130 million beach resort in Hollywood has to pass a city commission vote.

CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald reports the Hollywood City Commission will vote Wednesday night on a proposed funding plan for the future Margaritaville Beach Resort.

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Late last week, developer Lon Tabatchnik struck a deal with Starwood Capital — the company that once financed high-end hotels including St. Regis, W, Westin and Sheratons globally — to build the mega resort along Johnson Street and the beach.

The plan also calls for the Hollywood Redevelopment Agency to invest $23 million.

Tabatchnik said last week he needs the city’s approval in order to finalize the deal with Starwood Capital, a global investment firm.

In exchange, the developer will pay $1 million rent to the city, which owns the land where the resort would be built, for the first year. After that, the rent would increase 3 percent annually, and there are other bumps in the scale that would benefit the city, officials said.

On Wednesday, Tabatchnik and city staff will explain the new funding plan.

At a community meeting Tuesday night, city staff gave a preview, explaining the relationship between the city and the developer and fielding more than a dozen questions from concerned residents and business owners about the new deal.

Barbaree King, who has lived in the city for 10 years, said she had concerns that the city didn’t have enough experience “with such a big project.”

But hearing that Starwood Capital had stepped up made her feel a little better.

“If anything, it gives me a little more confidence,” she said.

Tabatchnik has hit several snags in developing the 350-room hotel and restaurant complex since he received the green light from the city two years ago.

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Originally, Tabatchnik planned on getting the bulk of the funding through foreign investors under a federal program under which they could win U.S. residency if they put up $500,000.

After realizing the original plan was not working, in May Tabatchnik proposed several alternatives to the Hollywood City Commission, including getting traditional financing and asking for more money from the city’s Community Redevelopment Agency. Originally the CRA was going to put up $10 million.

Without having the funding in place, Tabatchnik missed three deadlines in July — including obtaining construction permits — but was given more time by the city to find funding.

In addition, Broward County required the developer to have the beach property platted — a process that precisely defines the boundaries of the tract as well as the access to public rights of way. The process could take until November and cost the developer an additional $200,000.

If Tabatchnik gets the approval from the commission Wednesday, construction could begin within weeks of getting the platting completed.

Construction is expected to take about two years.

The meeting begins at 5 p.m. at City Hall, 2600 Hollywood Blvd.


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CBSMiami.com Team