A spokesperson for developer Rick Caruso denied rumors that Caruso has backed out of the deal with rebuild Montecito’s Miramar Hotel and that Caruso is ceding the project back to Ty Warner - from whom he bought it - for completion.
“I’m spending way too much time and Rick’s spending way too much money on plans if that’s the case,” said Caruso’s right-hand man Matt Middlebrook.
Middlebrook did acknowledge that the project might encounter some delays due to differences of opinion about the historical significance of some of the old Miramar structures. According to the historical analysis performed by consultants hired by Caruso, none of the structures have any historic significance according to federal, state, or local standards. But according to consultants hired by Ian Schrager, the flamboyant hotelier who sold the star-crossed structure to Warner, several of the structures do have local historical significance.
The county has since hired an independent historical consultant to see if the two reports can be reconciled. That report should be out within a month. How fast Caruso can proceed after that depends entirely on what the report concludes.