Garden Grove OKs $42 million Bond Payment for Waterpark Hotel Developer

The Garden Grove City Council unanimously approved a $42 million bond payment to the developer of the Great Wolf Lodge Water Park Hotel at a meeting Tuesday night.

The taxpayer subsidy, part of a 2010 agreement between the city and Colorado-based McWhinney, is just one of the economic incentives given to the developer  to construct the water park. The city also transferred the property, a trailer park that was purchased by the city’s former redevelopment agency, to the real estate developer without charge.

The resort is expected to have a soft opening in February 2016 followed by a grand opening in March, according to a city staff report.

City officials are hoping the resort will generate $8.5 million a year in hotel taxes, a figure which is based on a 66 percent occupancy rate.

The bond payment still needs to be approved by the state Department of Finance and no money will be disbursed until the resort receives a certificate of occupancy.

Contact Thy Vo at or follow her on Twitter @thyanhvo.