OCEANSIDE — Construction is almost complete for the new Seabird Resort and Mission Pacific Hotel, both of which are set to open in late May.
The new resort and hotel are part of the project originally referred to as the Oceanside Beachfront Resort. The resort has been in the works for the last decade and has been under construction since 2019.
Developer S.D. Malkin Properties say the resort located in front of the Oceanside Pier will be the “newest and largest oceanfront resort” in San Diego County in more than 50 years.
The Coast News recently took an exclusive hard-hat tour of both Mission Pacific and the Seabird Resort. Though both hotels are part of the same resort, they are distinctively different from each other in design and atmosphere.
Located on the north side of the resort, Mission Pacific Hotel features more trendy, bohemian, contemporary designs. The hotel will focus its programming as a “couples sanctuary” versus the grand coastal estate feel that the Seabird Resort will have, according to Brandon Hendricks of Hyatt Hotels.
Hendricks is the area director of sales and marketing for Hyatt, which is the management company for both hotels.
The Seabird Resort’s design has a classic, coastal hotel design reminiscent of Oceanside’s past.
“This is a timeless sort of hotel,” Hendricks said. “In 100 years this will still be in style — they won’t change a lot because the design will be very classic, whereas Mission Pacific is more contemporary.”
When it is eventually time to make renovations to the hotel and resort buildings, he explained, the Mission Pacific’s image might change “more dramatically” to match the contemporary styles of that time.
Both hotels have six floors each. Most of Mission Pacific’s 161 rooms have some view of the ocean with the exception of nine rooms that face the city. The larger Seabird Resort has 226 rooms with most featuring an ocean view except for about 40.
Another difference between the two hotels is where the entrances are located. The Seabird Resort will have a large, grand entrance right on Mission Avenue while Mission Pacific’s more subtle entrance will be located on North Myers Street.
Mission Pacific has a large courtyard that includes a garden, a restaurant patio and the historic Graves House, which is undergoing renovations as part of the construction process. Hendricks said outside renovations of the Graves House are almost complete while inside has a little more to go.
The Graves House will be home to a food, beverage and retail shop once complete.
The courtyard and resort as a whole will be open to the public, with several restaurants, bars and retail shops planned throughout.
Hendricks anticipates the Mission Pacific’s rooftop bar will be a huge hit among guests and the community.
“I see this as being the hottest place for sunset in the entire North Bay,” Hendricks said.
Right next to the rooftop bar will be a pool overlooking the pier and ocean.
Hendricks said the hotel plans to install a camera on the hotel’s roof that will stream video of the break on Surfline’s website. Oceanside has several cameras that watch the break, but the one on Mission Pacific will be particularly unique according to Hendricks.
“This one will be great because it’s elevated and sits right in front of one of the best breaks in all of California,” he said.
Located on the third floor of the Seabird Resort is a huge pool deck with its own bar and food service as well. Though it isn’t as high up as the pool at Mission Pacific, simply standing on the Seabird’s pool deck makes one feel as though they are floating above the ocean waves.
The Seabird will also feature several spa treatment rooms, a salon and a library Hendricks said will be used by both guests and locals alike.
“Let’s say you come early and you can’t check in yet and you need a place to hang out — this is what this space will be for,” Hendricks said about the library.
The library can be rented out when space allows for it, Hendricks said, and will be perfect for events like wine and whiskey tasting as well as book club meetings and more.
“This space will be beautiful when it’s done,” he said.
The resort decided to call it the Wood Library after former Oceanside Mayor Jim Wood, who Hendricks said was instrumental in the resort’s approval process.
“He was involved in the planning and getting this project really off the ground,” Hendricks said. “We thought naming this after him would be a really good idea.”
Hendricks said the resort has been focusing on building local partnerships since construction began to help give its visitors the proper Oceanside experience.
“We’ve got Pacific Coast Spirits developing liquor for us that will be proprietary to our hotel, and the same with Bagby Beer,” Hendricks said. “Jeff (Bagby) will develop some beers for us — we’ll have one or two at the Seabird and another on the roof at Mission Pacific curated to the style of the hotel.”
One of the resort’s biggest partners is the Oceanside Museum of Art, which is curating all of the artwork throughout both Mission Pacific and the Seabird. All of the artists are from Southern California with about 40% of them based in San Diego County.
The Seabird will also feature a gallery area for the museum to showcase and rotate more local artwork. Hendricks said the entire resort will feature more than $1 million worth of artwork.
The resort is also working with local partners to offer both private surf lessons and skateboarding lessons to guests as well.
The resort also wants to hire as many O’siders as possible to help drive home its unique, Oceanside experience.
“They become mini-ambassadors,” Hendricks said. “They really know the community and if you ask them where’s the best place for X, they’re going to tell you where it is. That’s what travelers are looking for — they’re looking for that connection to the local community as much as possible, especially I think coming out of this pandemic.”
The COVID-19 pandemic didn’t really slow much down in terms of construction for the resort. According to Hendricks, everything has so far worked out pretty well in terms of timing and design of the resort to accommodate social distancing.
“You’re naturally distancing because you’re outside on the beach,” Hendricks said, adding, “Every restaurant we have has a huge patio.”
The resort has yet to release the names of all of its restaurant and bar services. According to spokesperson Amelia Robertson, the resort plans to announce those names sometime in mid-March.
The Mission Pacific Hotel is set to open May 19 and the Seabird Resort will open on May 25. Right now the resort is only taking reservations beginning in mid-June, but reservations may open up sooner depending on when exactly all the final touches are complete.
With less than three months left until its soft openings, work remaining includes installing lighting and light fixtures, moving in carpet, additional work on the lobbies and moving in all the furniture.
“You’ll see so much progress in the next few weeks,” Hendricks said.
The resort will also be busy hiring and training more than 300 employees in the next few months. Then once everything opened and running, the resort will basically hit peak season right away.