Factory Stores at Y sold — major changes coming

By Kathryn Reed

More than $1 million is about to be infused into the Y in South Lake Tahoe.

Sutter Capital Group based in Sacramento last month bought the Factory Stores at the Y.

But don’t expect discount stores to fill the empty spaces. Owners want to revamp this prime piece of real estate that has 51,811-square-feet of leasable space.

“Factory stores are outdated for that location,” Burke Fathy, general manager of the ownership group, told Lake Tahoe News.

The vision is for a mixed-use retail center that will include a restaurant that would be family friendly.

“Our business plan is to renovate, reposition, rebrand the property, to reinvigorate it and stabilize the assets,” Fathy said.

With 33,000 cars passing by the property each day, the location is one of the main things that attracted the real estate management firm.

The owners also want to capitalize on the area plan that is in the works for this section of town. A greenway is planned for behind the center where a revamped bike path exists.

Fathy said it’s possible to knock out the vacant section of the building where the L connects so people using the greenway would have access to the center. Then that square footage may be relocated elsewhere on the property.

Owners hope the more than $1 million worth of improvements will begin this summer.

Fathy would not divulge what the sale price was. For several years Wells Fargo Bank has owned the center because former owners Shannon Casteel and Nancy Irmer defaulted in 2012. At that time the sisters owed more than $8 million.

In 2004, they bought the center from their brother, Gary Casteel. He still runs Heavenly Village.

Fathy wouldn’t say if the few remaining stores will have a future in the revitalized center, but added, that they’ve managed to survive this long, so they might thrive going forward. (Izod and Van Heusen closed in December.)

When Big 5 opened in spring 2013 the company signed a five-year lease with an option for 20.




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    Comments (28)
    1. Old Long Skiis says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      Factory Stores at the Y, Glad to hear of improvements coming. Sounds like the new owners have some good ideas!
      Welcome to South Lake Tahoe, Sutter Capital Group! It will be nice to see that property renovated.
      One property at a time and we’re gettin’ there ! OLS

    2. Irish Wahini says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      Sounds grreat! Glad to hear there will be access to the Greenway, and hopefully an outside eating venue cyclists/walkers can frequent. Outside firepits would be great also…. and maybe some low hedges around the streetside corner to mitigate the traffic noise & exhaust.

    3. Lisa says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      I’m so excited I could shed a tear. Driving past those stores everyday and watching business after business fail was very painful. So amazing to see the “Y ” come back to life!!!!

    4. Joan says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      Great news. How about that Trader Joes? We have enough traffic to support one in South Lake Tahoe.

    5. Hmmm... says - Posted: January 8, 2015


    6. Kenny "Tahoe Skibum" Curtzwiler says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      The problem has never been about what goes in there but property maintenance. There have been several successful stores in there but the property was in shambles and they moved. We did the roof several years ago when the shoe store was in there and it needed to be replaced several years prior to that. The buildings inside all need to be revamped and updated. Two things are against this already, signage and location. They need better and larger signs and I hope they can get them. Great location but when everyone turns right on hiway 50 they all have to look to their left to merge. By the time they merge they are in front of the pharmacy and past any entrances. Besides, all the map systems out there tell everyone coming to Tahoe to turn at Pioneer Trail. It would really be great to see something there that will draw us to the Y and spruce up that corner. Only one left to prevent that is …….

    7. Cora D. says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      Fantastic! This is SO great. One step at a time, SLT!!!!!!! Now let’s get a Trader Joes/Whole Foods and a Pita Pit in there! Wonderful news.

    8. MTF aka Aardvark says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      Kenny, I agree with you except for one item. We do not need larger signs, just strategically placed ones. Have you ever been to Carmel By The Sea? It is a 1 square mile of living and shopping and it has no problem attracting the tourist.

      Personally, I am glad to see some of the signage in Tahoe changing. This town is starting to become more attractive to the tourist, but, it still has a long way to go. As a thirty plus year resident (still a newbie to some) this is the way I see it.

    9. Slapshot says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      Traders Joes and pita pit are corporate chains. Most people in this town are anti corporation I.e. Heavenly/Vail, the casinos, the hospital , etc. These corporations will suck the money out of town to their corporate headquarters.

    10. Diana Hamilton says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      Great! It is the “Welcome to South Lake Tahoe” area, so it’ll be terrific to have it be attractive.

    11. Hmmm... says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      As much as I would like having it here, I believe Trader Joe’s requires a baseline population of 50,000 people for them to even consider opening in a community.

    12. deb says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      Great News!

    13. Kits carson says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      Hmmm: I think you are correct. I heard they looked at Tahoe and decided NO. It’s a bummer, they would be great to have here.

    14. Nick says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      How about a Sierra Nevada Brewery Taphouse and Grill in there? Some sort of a franchise. I don’t have the start up capital, but I do love their products. Sorry to the local breweries, but I like their beers much better for the most part.

    15. Steven says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      Kenny is right about Pioneer Trail.
      It has become a freeway for speeding tourists to get to the casinos.
      Remember back when the teenager was speeding, lost control, hit a tree and killed himself ? His parents lobbied for a $10,000 guard rail, that was installed.
      What are we going to do when a tourist going the new 50 mph speed limit, more likely 60, kills someone ?
      The speed limit should be dialed back to at least 40 and some stop signs installed, at least at Elks Club.
      And change the maps and gps to keep tourists on hwy 50.

    16. Yo says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      Great News! Although I doubt it will ever happen Trader Joes is Number 1 on my list.

    17. Buck says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      Slapshot, don’t include Barton Hospital in your list of corporations that ‘suck the profit out of town to their corporate headquarters’. Barton is a not for profit corporation headquartered in South Lake Tahoe.

    18. Dan Wilvers says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      Only one left to prevent that is …….

      I saw what you did there Kenny! ;)

      Steven the accident that led to a guardrail was in Feb 91′ and took the life of three local boys.

      It wasn’t due to speeding, rather excessive speed under some of the worst conditions I’ve ever seen on our roadways. The icy conditions were set up quickly and caused problems all over town that night. Still to this day the single worst road conditions I’ve ever had to drive on.

      RIP Rory Hrbacek, Casey Wells and Sandy Haynes.

    19. rock4tahoe says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      What a cotton pickin minute. “They” are going to fix up an old property in town and people are OK with that… what happened to the NIMBY crowd? What if they try to make it larger then two stories? What if TRPA is involved? The County? Where are some real local “Y” people to make a stink about actual improvements? LOL!

    20. LeanForward says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      It appears to be a good time to invest in South Lake Tahoe. I’d love to learn more about this investment group and the opportunity they see.

      Great news! I’m sure this wont be the last time this happens in our city this year.

    21. Tahoebluewire says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      Excited but wary. It’s gonna look just like a strip mall in rosesom/fauville down the hill. An anchor restaurant chain and a bunch of other chains. Imagine what a cluster duck the traffic at the Y will look like.

    22. Hmmm... says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      @Bluewire- therein lies the rub-ingress and egress! Imagine slightly buzzed to outright plastered folks trying to zip out into traffic during a busy weekend in either winter or summer!

    23. Louis says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      Question, (I’m not shilling here or connected to them) but why are some of you hoping for a corporate presence such as trader joe’s / whole foods, when there is a locally owned business right across the street? Grass Roots. Plus Ralies has more and more organic wholesome items all the time as well. Nope, Sutter Capital has it right, improve the flow of the buildings, put in a family restaurant. Trust them, they seems to be professionals and aren’t going to throw their money away. Hopefully the city won’t be a roadblock as well.

    24. Perry R. Obray says - Posted: January 8, 2015

      Hopefully they extend the walkway from the light straight into the center so people don’t have to make convoluted paths to the center.

    25. Flatlander says - Posted: January 9, 2015

      I couldn’t agree with you more on the comment on Pioneer Trail traffic/speed. It is absurd to have 50 mph limit which people drive at 60 mph. I would like to see it drop back to 40 like the rest of the “Trail”. But no stop signs please!! Maybe a light at Elks or Wahoe. I wonder if the genius traffic engineer will ever admit to the mistake.

    26. rock4tahoe says - Posted: January 16, 2015

      Ok… one more time with Gusto! HOW ABOUT A MOVIE THEATER AT THE Y AGAIN!

    27. reloman says - Posted: January 16, 2015

      Great idea Rock, way don’t you open one up, I’m sure you can find a place who will lease you the space

    28. rock4tahoe says - Posted: January 16, 2015

      Relo. I am getting too old to open and run a Theater. Just a suggestion since we used to have three Theaters at the Y years ago.