Realtors, millionaires and developers are munching on crab cakes, drinking champagne and touring the first new luxury condo complex to open in South Lake Tahoe in 30 years. It’s called Zalanta and it’s across from Heavenly Mountain Resort.
Fred Gartrell of Reno is looking out a window at the snow-covered peaks and says it’s worth a million.
“Probably pay that, probably pay a little bit more if I like the unit,” says Gartrell.
The listing agent says 10 of the 30 units sold in the first week. That’s symbolic of money circulating basin-wide. According to Chase International, luxury home sales were up 28 percent and condos up 18 percent, breaking $1.3 billion in 2016. South Lake Tahoe Mayor Austin Sass explains the impact of the flood of cash.
“Probably 4 or 5 star lodging is a big deal for our town,” Sass says.
Zalanta is worth $42 million. It has a second phase that’s twice the size. Sass says the parcel next to it, which is still a hole in the ground, sold for $43 million and a nearby golf course has a new hotel going in too.
“We hope that the economy stays strong and we hope that people see all this good stuff happening and they say 'hey, I want to be a part of this,'" says Sass. "So come to South Lake Tahoe, bring your dollars and lets make this town a better place.”
The City of South Lake Tahoe is doubling down on redevelopment. Next month it’s spending $6 million to demolish an old 120-room hotel. It will be replaced by a Whole Foods subsidiary.