Temecula Grapevine

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Pechanga Resort and Casino delights crowd with new restaurant additions, swift ornate lobby remodel

Lobby Walkway by Restaurants in Pechanga Resort and Casino (courtesy)

New Lobby Walkway by Restaurants in Pechanga Resort and Casino (courtesy)

Pechanga Lobby Before renovation (courtesy)

Pechanga Lobby Before renovation (courtesy)

Pechanga Resort and Casino invited Temecula to celebrate the renovation and renewal of the hotel’s grand entrance Wednesday, January 9, 2014.

Pechanga Ribbon Cutting for Grand Entrance Renovation completion (c) Crispin Courtenay

Pechanga Ribbon Cutting for Grand Entrance Renovation completion (c) Crispin Courtenay

Starting the event with a traditional Luiseno greeting, Tribal Chairman Mark Macarro made a point to thank the people of Pechanga, and their ancestors who have gone before. “Over 300 (Pechanga) members RSVP’d to attend this event,” stated Tribal Chairman Mark Macarro at the ribbon cutting.

Pechanga Tribal Chairman Mark Macarro (c) Crispin Courtenay

Pechanga Tribal Chairman Mark Macarro (c) Crispin Courtenay

“We were blown away to get such interest. We would not be here without our ancestors who sacrificed their lives, and lived without for so long.” Macarro stated. “After the 1875 eviction, it would have been simple to leave, but they held on, made all of this possible.”

Pechanga Tribal Chairman Mark Macarro speaks at ribbon cutting ceremony Grand Entrance Renovation project (c) Crispin Courtenay

Pechanga Tribal Chairman Mark Macarro speaks at ribbon cutting ceremony Grand Entrance Renovation project (c) Crispin Courtenay

The property, staying true to the roots and people who inspire the towering structure in Temecula, stands as a testament for what the Pechanga people perceives themselves. “This is not just a business,” stated Macarro, “This is a reflection of who we are as a people.”

Rain curtain in Pechanga Resort and Casino in Temecula (c) Crispin Courtenay

Rain curtain in Pechanga Resort and Casino in Temecula (c) Crispin Courtenay

Over twelve years, with over ten-million visitors, the Pechanga lobby enhancement project catapulted the resort and casino into the future. Working with Cleo Designs of Las Vegas, the renovation from dark, hidden passages to wide open excellence was made a reality in just 4 months. “We set out to renew and transform the lobby and restaurants into a focal point for guests to come into our grand entrance and say, ‘wow,’” said Patrick Murphy, Pechanga Development Corporation President. “Judging by the thousands of guests who have already come in and taken photos in front of the rain curtain water feature, we hope we have achieved that objective.

Pechanga Resort and Casino grand opening of new lobby (c) Crispin Courtenay

Pechanga Resort and Casino grand opening of new lobby (c) Crispin Courtenay

Visitors check in to the new Pechanga Resort and Casino lobby 2014 (c) Crispin Courtenay

Visitors check in to the new Pechanga Resort and Casino lobby 2014 (c) Crispin Courtenay

Using wood, glass, water, and light, the new rain fountain flows from ceiling to floor, mesmerizing to watch and adding glamour and elegance to the main entrance.

Fixtures in glass and light at Pechanga Resort and Casino in Temecula (c) Crispin Courtenay

Fixtures in glass and light at Pechanga Resort and Casino in Temecula (c) Crispin Courtenay

“Construction and progress is never pretty, something to avoid. My personal impression, I was blown away. Clean, elegant, and timeless. The design was taken very seriously from day one. There was a time in the 1990’s that people didn’t want a casino here. They thought property values would go down. Not only did that not happen, but Temecula valley is one of the strongest housing markets in the area. The design elements of the property were so classic, that the Wolf Creek Property drew from our design.” Stated Macarro.

Artistry and design showcase Pechanga people in shapes and textures at Pechanga Resort and Casino (c) Crispin Courtenay

Artistry and design showcase Pechanga people in shapes and textures at Pechanga Resort and Casino (c) Crispin Courtenay

Along with the renovation, comes over 90 new jobs, two revived and reimagined restaurants, a new VIP check-in lounge, and two new dining outlets.

Umi Sushi and Oyster Bar greets visitors with a stunning HD display of menu items, and a variety of sushi, and “comfort” seafood, and other delicacies by chef Damien Stanley.

HD menu boards at Umi sushi at Pechanga (c) Crispin Courtenay

HD menu boards at Umi sushi at Pechanga (c) Crispin Courtenay

Umi Sushi and Oyster bar at Pechanga Resort and Casino (c) Crispin Courtenay

Umi Sushi and Oyster bar at Pechanga Resort and Casino (c) Crispin Courtenay

Umi Sushi and Oyster Bar chef Damien Stanley at Pechanga Resort and Casino (courtesy photo)

Umi Sushi and Oyster Bar chef Damien Stanley at Pechanga Resort and Casino (courtesy photo)

Interior designers of Cleo Designs in Las Vegas, Nevada said their inspiration for creating the look of Umi Sushi & Oyster Bar consisted of jewels and sunken, dazzling glass from the sea.

Umi Sushi at Pechanga Resort and Casino in Temecula (courtesy photo)

Umi Sushi at Pechanga Resort and Casino in Temecula (courtesy photo)

Red dragon roll at Umi Sushi and Oyster Bar at Pechanga Resort and Casino (c) Crispin Courtenay

Red dragon roll at Umi Sushi and Oyster Bar at Pechanga Resort and Casino, courtesy

Blazing Noodles has seen an inspired change, as well, with changes by internationally renowned Chef Chung-Ming Kwong. Blazing Noodles will now veers more heavily toward traditional Chinese fare with such delicacies as Roasted Duck Noodle Soup, Oxtail with Red Wine Sauce, Poached Duck Wings, Duck Tongue, Tofu and Pork Belly on the menu while nodding to diners with a more western form of Asian cuisine, the menu is balanced with selections such as the very recognizable Orange Chicken, Chinese Beef Broccoli, Pad Thai, Fried Rice, and more.

Blazing Noodles at Pechanga Resort and Casino (courtesy)

Blazing Noodles at Pechanga Resort and Casino (courtesy)

Inside Blazing Noodles at Pechanga Resort and Casino (courtesy)

Inside Blazing Noodles at Pechanga Resort and Casino (courtesy)

The other dining outlet is Blends Coffee & Wine Bar serving coffees, teas, pastries, fresh fruit and more in the mornings, plus wines by the glass in the evenings. Blends guests can also jump on free WiFi, charge their devices or just relax in the comfortable seating. The Pechanga Café rounds out the new expansion, offering a 24-hour cafe menu selections from lighter fare (soups and salads) to hearty dinners, breakfast, lunch and dinner served anytime.

Pechanga Cafe at the new grand entrance of Pechanga Resort and Casino (courtesy)

Pechanga Cafe at the new grand entrance of Pechanga Resort and Casino (courtesy)

The only thing separating the restaurant from the walkway through to the Pechanga hotel lobby are floor to ceiling metal arms of colored crystal jewels and a barely see through mesh curtain, another call-out to the designers’ creative motivation. Designers envisioned and Pechanga utilized the highest level of finishes and quality materials, rich mahogany, brushed brass, espresso-finished wood cabinetry and more. In place of the slate stamped concrete floor gleams 20,000 square feet of fresh light tan Italian marble. Huge HD screens promote events, restaurants, and special services for visitors to Pechanga Resort and Casino.

Lobby Rain Curtain (courtesy)

Lobby Rain Curtain (courtesy)

The ‘rain curtain’ is a beautiful focal point for the new lobby, and according to designer Ann Fleming of Cleo Designs, “There is really nothing like it anywhere. Water emanates from a mechanism at the top of the tower, but it gives the illusion that the droplets appear from thin air at the top of the water feature.”

Aside from the sheer beauty, there is a major economic impact based upon purchases, salaries, and wages of those who worked on the project, and the newly employed 90 workers at the resort. Economist Dr. Manfred Keil estimates the major renovation of the 25-thousand square feet inside the Pechanga Resort & Casino results in an economic impact of approximately $20-million, according to press release.

Patrick Murphy, Pechanga Development Corporation Board President at ribbon cutting (c) Crispin Courtenay

Patrick Murphy, Pechanga Development Corporation Board President at ribbon cutting (c) Crispin Courtenay

At the ribbon cutting, Murphy thanked Cleo Designs, Swinerton Builders, Delawie, and the Temecula Valley Convention and Visitors Bureau, stating, “We completed this beautiful transformation in just four months. We wanted as little impact to our guests as possible, and the construction crews, contractors, and team members helped us realize that goal. We are proud of this elegant and timeless space.” Murphy said.

“Clearly, tourism is an important economic driver for the Temecula Valley,” Murphy. Tourism, and a responsibility for the local environment.

During the remodel, resort officials paid special attention to employ ecologically friendly practices and to utilize sustainable resources wherever possible through the renovation. According to press release, the hotel lobby stamped concrete flooring was recycled, and responsibly sourced marble was put in its place. Many of the materials from the benches, check-in desks and other lobby furnishings were sent to the resort’s in-house cabinet and upholstery shops to be re-purposed and applied in other areas. Water used in the “rain curtain” water feature recirculates. The ceiling in the new Sundry shop was fabricated from recycled aluminum. ” Honoring the environment and nature is a deeply important value for our Tribe,” says Murphy, “and this major renovation was undertaken with environmental responsiveness.”

“We look forward to continuing the tradition of exceeding the expectations of guests visiting Pechanga and Southern California Wine Country.” Ken Westmeyer, Chairman of the Temecula Valley Convention and Visitors Bureau, said.

Temecula City Council Member Mike Naggar at Pechanga Ribbon Cutting (c) Crispin Courtenay

Temecula City Council Member Mike Naggar at Pechanga Ribbon Cutting (c) Crispin Courtenay

Noted in attendance were Temecula Mayor Maryann Edwards, Temecula City Councilman former mayor Mike Naggar, Temecula City Manager, Aaron Adams. “This is an absolutely beautiful enhancement, and an investment toward tourism and visitors,” stated Adams.

Lobby main entrance completed at Pechanga Resort and Casino (courtesy photo)

Lobby main entrance completed at Pechanga Resort and Casino (courtesy photo)

“There is a synergy in the valley,” stated Macarro, “and all of these people together, our future continues to look very bright.”

For more information, call toll free (877) 711-2946

Visit www.Pechanga.com. Follow Pechanga Resort & Casino on Facebook and on Twitter @PechangaCasino.

For more information, Like Temecula Grapevine on Facebook – and Follow us on Twitter for information updates: face tweety

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About Ashley Ludwig

Ashley Ludwig is an Editor for Patch News, Orange County and Los Angeles. She is also an inspirational romantic suspense author.

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