Gautam Patel and his plan to invest $30 million in Three Rivers

Gautam Patel is no stranger to Three Rivers. He lived here in 2004 when his family managed the Best Western Holiday Lodge. Now he’s a principal partner in a proposed development that would build what he calls “boutique hotel accommodations” in Three Rivers at Highway 198 and Old Three Rivers Drive.

Smitten by the grandeur of Sequoia National Park, he says it’s been the vision of the Patel family to one day return and develop a Three Rivers property unlike any other in a national park gateway community.

And they are not seeking the path of least resistance, Patel said. With the experience of a failed attempt to develop river frontage adjacent to Three Rivers Post Office, two years and $500,000 later, Patel thinks the current choice for the new location has all the right stuff to be a hit with Sequoia visitors and a popular gathering place for locals too.

Gautam Patel
Aerial view of the site of the proposed boutique hotel complex in Three Rivers.

Patel’s oft-repeated mantra of late has been “… we’re not trying to pull a fast one over on anyone here.” In fact, on Wednesday, July 10, at the monthly Three Rivers Community Services District (CSD) board meeting, Patel reiterated his company’s plans to build a $700,000 wastewater recycling plant as a part of the project even though they are not required to do so.

Prior to the County of Tulare’s public meeting scheduled in Three Rivers on Wednesday, July 24, video footage will be posted from the CSD meeting, which posed several of the questions that so many are asking relative to water, traffic, wastewater treatment and how this project might affect the future growth of Three Rivers.

 

 

30 thoughts on “Gautam Patel and his plan to invest $30 million in Three Rivers

  • July 12, 2019 at 6:27 am
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    Hello John (and Sarah) Nice job John, thank you

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  • July 12, 2019 at 6:29 am
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    Why not just buy the property next to the Cider Mill, it has all the infrastructure in place .

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    • July 13, 2019 at 8:51 am
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      That and other properties have been approached, but rejected. What about the golf property?

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  • July 12, 2019 at 6:37 am
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    John Elliott said it himself…… “Too good to be true”

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    • July 13, 2019 at 9:01 am
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      Although it is a good support in favour of the design, it sounds like a sales pitch.

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  • July 12, 2019 at 6:58 am
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    I have a hard time using “boutique hotel” and “Three Rivers” in the same context.

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  • July 12, 2019 at 7:25 am
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    Mr. Patel,
    Please share with us now so we are not misinformed:
    how many hotel rooms?
    how many parking spaces?
    what type of wastewater treatment plant are you planning?
    how many wells will you drill and what is their depth?
    what type of road mitigation are you planning?
    We have seen drawings and photos of lovely buildings but no specifics on the impact to the environment.

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  • July 12, 2019 at 8:06 am
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    When did developer propose building next to the fire station and who in Three Rivers thought it was too visible from Sierra? Thank you

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  • July 12, 2019 at 8:33 am
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    The beginning of the end of Three Rivers. Bad idea…. I’ll pray the development is not approved.

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  • July 12, 2019 at 9:48 am
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    It is very sad to see Three Rivers becoming another Oakhurst and used just as a gateway to another tourist attraction. With at least 300 B’nB’s here already, by adding a 200- bed hotel, I fear Three Rivers will cease to exist as the small close-knit community that it has been since the 1850’s. Progress? I don’t view it as such!

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  • July 12, 2019 at 10:46 am
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    A project of this high caliber has long been sorely needed in Three Rivers. The proposed site is and has long been an eyesore that gives visitors arriving in Three Rivers a negative impression before they even arrive at the Village center.

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    • July 14, 2019 at 10:39 pm
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      Unfortunately the negative impression will not change; The county and developers have announced that the complex will not be visible from 198. It would be a great improvement if they would move it to 198 and start to change that impression. It’s all about money. Period

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  • July 12, 2019 at 11:52 am
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    who owns the land?

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  • July 12, 2019 at 1:58 pm
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    u have a beautiful lake there, as a view, wow, what better place could u stay. It will enhance vacationers for sure. for the lake and the park. But, theres a but

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  • July 12, 2019 at 5:36 pm
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    Nice job on the interview John, thanks for your efforts to keep everyone informed!

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  • July 12, 2019 at 6:08 pm
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    As a Three Rivers native, I’m very sad to say that developments like this make places like Badger/Eshom and Springville look very, very good.

    Three Rivers has way too many BnBs…has Mr. Patel considered the true demand for this project?

    Kaweah Country has always been an exceptional community. Outside investors/developers have threatened its exceptionality for many years…and, for the most part, have failed to truly serve the community they promise to share the wealth with. Its long history has seen the comings and goings of dreamers, ne’er-do-wells, pioneers, conservationists, opportunists and plain, hard-working folk who love the Kaweah watershed for what it truly is: An escape from urban and suburban sprawl.

    That very sprawl, evidenced by the epidemic of BnBs and this proposed development, saddens me.

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  • July 12, 2019 at 8:55 pm
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    I listened to the entire video, and I’m guessing a few things in it are now quite true. The developer is looking for local input, and will incorporate it into the project. He says many locals told him they want something upscale here, a boutique hotel, ,and that input has been put into the design. I’ve not met a single local person who would request a boutique hotel in the area.

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    • July 20, 2019 at 7:53 am
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      From now on, a valid name will be required before a comment is approved for posting. First name plus last initial, first initial plus last name, or full name will all be acceptable options.

      Reply
  • July 12, 2019 at 9:52 pm
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    I was told he would be meeting with Gary Cort to consider his input.

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    • July 13, 2019 at 9:16 am
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      That’s good news …. it would be great if Cort designed it.

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  • July 13, 2019 at 8:41 am
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    If you look at the whole western United States, there are no small undisturbed beautiful communities anymore – just go to Idaho or Montana and ask those people. Houses there cost as much as they do on the coast now due to all the Californians and East Coast people looking for a refuge. Unfortunately, people have been attracted to Three Rivers because they feel it can be a revenue source for them (i.e., airbnb’s, etc) with little regard for the community. It is sad but it’s how things happen in this country, and I would suspect that few will recognize Three Rivers 30 years from now. How Three Rivers has managed to maintain it’s identity as long as it has with L.A. so close is quite amazing. Frankly, the rafting companies were the first nail in the coffin, opportunists that saw that they could make a buck on something they really didn’t have to pay for. If this project goes through undoubtedly there will be benefits and conveniences to the community; but if you need those things, in all honesty, you just need to live in a bigger community. You can’t have both. It would be nice to believe that Three Rivers would stay the way it has for the has for another 50 years, but it won’t. And the change will not be for the better.

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  • July 13, 2019 at 12:02 pm
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    I hope we are taking a lesson from the disastrous fire that destroyed Paradise, a northern CA town in a fire-prone area that had only one 2-lane highway in and out of town. Many people perished trying to escape.. Three Rivers has a similar setting.. We should consider the high risk of fire before allowing a greater density of people and cars

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    • July 14, 2019 at 7:48 pm
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      Absolutely true Jane. If folks here don’t think it can happen here just like Paradise then maybe a trip up the mountain is in order. Just take a long look over all those dead trees still there, still dead or dying from beetles from the long drought and they will never be able to fix this problem…the terrain, the cost, the enormous size of the dead and dying tree problem. Yep, a slow trip coming down from Giant Forest and pull over occasionally to truly look at the scope of what we have going on here with fire danger and perhaps realize if we have to evacuate it will be a complete nightmare….just like Paradise.

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  • July 13, 2019 at 7:28 pm
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    Mr. Patel, As you know change is difficult and with porential change comes opposition. I hope your plans are met with great acceptance. // I have a partner in Orlando that has a new slant on waste water treatment plants. I believe you would be doing yourself a major favor by talking with him. I can arrange a three way call to discuss this all natural treatment system. You can reach me at Monarch Packaging’s number, 559-688-7308. Looking forward to hearing from you. // Larry Thompson

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  • July 13, 2019 at 10:02 pm
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    The McKee ranch? Did the developer purchase the ranch already? How is that property zoned? That ranch is actively used by local ranchers and residents for training and roping and is a historic homesite. I would hate to see it bulldozed for a hotel and wastewater treatment site … hopefully I misunderstood what was said in the video.

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  • July 13, 2019 at 10:56 pm
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    Thanks, John. It’s good to have you and Sarah monitoring in the best interest of the community..

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  • July 14, 2019 at 6:46 am
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    The Mckee Ranch? That’s not what we were told originally. Still the same unresolved water, septic and access/traffic issues as before, however. Still the same concern about whether these folks have looked at the market for this kind of venture – we already have one big boondoggle along the highway. And does the county still plan to give this corporation some of our tax money? It does not sound good to me.

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  • July 14, 2019 at 11:42 am
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    If Earl McKee (God rest his soul) was proposing to build a boutique cowboy hotel and dude ranch (with bunkhouse) on his property, would townsfolk rise against him?

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  • July 14, 2019 at 3:03 pm
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    It might be worth bringing up at this time the incomplete three hotel complex being built in Oakhurst by the Patel family. These hotels were approved in 2013. One of the permit conditions was to supply a 468,000 gallon water storage tank for fire protection as the Madera County Fire Marshal Deborah Keenan said the requirements were a matter of public safety.
    “Unfortunately the water company is not able to produce the 3,000 gallons a minute, so a water tank is required to be built,” said Keenan.
    For comparison the total rooms for these three hotels is 324 and the one being proposed in Three Rivers has been said to be around 240 rooms.
    What is the water availability in Three Rivers for fire suppression?
    https://www.sierrastar.com/news/article87813777.html
    https://abc30.com/archive/9443919/

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    • July 24, 2019 at 9:55 am
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      Good question since this area of South Fork has had two serious fires in the last 30 years.

      Reply

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