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California & the West

Virgin plans its first West Coast hotel in this California city

The Virgin empire is bringing its lifestyle brand of hotels to California. The company announced Tuesday that it plans to build its first hotel in the West in downtown Palm Springs.

But not for awhile.

Virgin Hotels Palm Springs will be built in the downtown area with an expected opening date of late 2018. It will sit on a to-be-created Main Street that will connect the Palm Springs Art Museum with North Palm Canyon Drive.

The hotel will feature 150 rooms (they call them "chambers" and "grand chamber suites") as well as the brand's signature Commons Club gathering space in the lobby. Of course, there will be on-site bars and restaurants too.

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The hotel will feature a rooftop terrace and pool to capitalize on views of the nearby Santa Rosa and San Jacinto mountains. And here's a local culture twist: There also will be an outdoor spot where guests can see movies and performances run by the Palm Springs Art Museum.

Palm Springs architect Chris Pardo is designing the building that will be managed by Virgin and developed by Wessman Development.

So far Virgin has opened one hotel in its namesake brand: Virgin Hotels Chicago, where rooms this weekend start at just $145. Next up are Nashville, Dallas and New York City.

The Palm Springs area has had a hotel explosion in recent years, with the opening of the Chateau at Lake La Quinta, the upcoming redo of the V Palm Springs and the renovated Triada Palm Springs.

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