Half Moon Bay hotel fined $1.6M for blocking beach access

Bay Area

SAN DIEGO (AP) — The California Coastal Commission has approved a $1.6 million fine against the operators of a posh Northern California hotel for failing to provide public access to its nearby beaches.

Commissioners approved the penalty against the Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay Thursday at a meeting in San Diego.

The fine was part of a settlement with the commission, which alleged that the hotel did not display signs informing the public about the beach access.

It also prevented the public from easily accessing nearby public parking spaces.

The 261-room luxury oceanfront hotel, golf course and spa was built in 2001.

The penalty is the second-largest in the commission’s history.

It will help increase access to state beaches and purchase land north of the hotel to expand beach access.

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