4/24/15 – Spring Forward!

Come out on May 16 & 17, 1 – 6PM

A Great Weekend to Experience the New Zillah Lakes

Events: 8:28 Golf Course Party: Fishing DerbyGolf Course Celeb: Lakeside BBQWe’re calling our two-day Spring Kickoff  Weekend (May 16 – 17) “Spring Forward” for Zillah Lakes, in honor of the the many projects now underway that will transform the future of our community.  Both days of the weekend are oriented to let you and your family experience the rich lifestyle in the offing at Zillah Lakes by just spending some time in a low-pressure, high-pleasure afternoon.  The weekend will culminate on Sunday evening in a spectacular winemaker-dinner service with music situated at the outdoor Lakeside Venue at the Event Center at Zillah Lakes. It will be One Enchanted Evening! Reserve your place early by calling 509-728-0099!  Drop by and stay a while! From 1 PM to 6 PM on both days we will feature

  • Open Houses of several home styles at Zillah Lakes,
  • A Golf tournament raised beau coups bucks for charityGolf cart tours of anywhere you want to go in the 220 acre project (well, almost anywhere)
  • Free Golf all day long (when tournaments are not in progress),
  • Drawings, photos and graphics showing the exciting new proposed changes at Zillah Lakes,
  • Grand Opening of 23 Phase 2 Lots to put YOUR Name on  at Zillah Lakes. (These lots are served by utility infrastructure, and permitted, but not yet paved and finished. Your refundable lot reservation fee ($1,000) puts your name on your favorite lot or lots until they are legally recorded.)
  • Complementary light snacks, drinks and fresh food from the grill provided, in part, by our new Bistro Chef, Crystal Ehninger.

In addition, each day of the weekend will have a schedule of events and opportunities that will help you experience the fun at Zillah Lakes present, and anticipate its future. Special Saturday Events:  a fun-filled afternoon featuring

  • an all ages golf scramble (1:30 PM),
  • a shore fishing derby (2 PM),
  • picnics by the lake (all afternoon),
  • the Glacier Blues Band (3 PM),

It’s a relaxing day tailored for families and kids. Festivities will end at 4, but the Onsite Team will continue to be available for home and project tours until 6, and the band may play on as well. Special Sunday features: Sophisticated Pleasures: a day to sample the “good life” at Zillah Lakes including –

  • 1:30 PM Free putting tournament first prize: annual golf membership,
  • 3 PM – Nature Trail Opens
  • All Day – Bocce Ball available at the Roundabout.

Sad News!

In the face of regulatory headwinds Zillah Lakes is forced to cancel our planned Event “One Enchanted Evening.”  

  • Scarlet Grape LogoInstead, One Enchanted Evening will take place as a gala Grand Opening later this summer, for the Zillah Lakes Event Center, which is nearing completion. On May 17, we will occasionally feature tastes of things to come, catered by, The Crystal Touch.  Crystal anticipates opening as the operator of The Scarlet Grape —a farm-to-table, unique wine-oriented bistro  — later this year, and in the meantime, may cater some weekend events at Zillah Lakes.
  • As an alternative, join us at the Zillah Lakes Cottages patio from 3:00 to 5:00 for free snacks and a little spring music by The Parkway Jazz Band.


Below is a copy of a press release recently sent to media outlets throughout Washington State.  This will give you a pretty clear idea of how far we have come toward implementing a 2015 Vision for Zillah Lakes. Cumulatively, these projects will transform Zillah Lakes this year and for years to come.  We are SO excited, and we know you will be too…

“Major Changes Set to Energize Zillah Lakes in 2015

Zillah, WA April 16, 2015 – Zillah Lakes is Planned Unit Development off I-82 at Exit 50, just south of Yakima, Washington, and set in the heart of one of the richest, world-class wine-producing areas in the state — including flowing vineyards, and dozens of small boutique wineries that dot the hillsides. Zillah Lakes broke ground just about the same time the mortgage market broke the US economy (2008). Unlike many other such communities, Zillah Lakes survived and continued to make incremental progress toward its ambition to become the best wine country community in the Yakima area and— because of its organic development approach — a model for planned development communities nationwide. The community, on 220 acres of former pastureland, currently boasts 50 residences, a 6-hole challenging golf course (9 holes planned at build-out), sixteen acres of lakes for fishing & boating, roughly 2 miles of walking/nature trails and a town center that already boasts a Yakima County Sheriff substation, several live-work residences, and a nearly complete luxury event center and Lakeside venue for conferences, weddings and other gatherings. This year, the project is due to receive several shots in the arm, both in the town center area and for the project as a whole. Zillah Prairie LLC, developer of the community — is expecting the rich concentration of events and improvements this year to bring exciting new momentum to the wine country, golf resort project. On Thursday, April 16 at 11:00 AM at Zillah Lakes Town Center (707 Fountain Boulevard, Zillah, WA  98953) representatives of Zillah Lakes and its community and business partners will offer short statements, exhibits, tours, and answer questions at a special media briefing previewing the exciting changes at Zillah Lakes anticipated this year. Zillah Lakes contacts are also available for more in-depth interviews, backgrounders, tours, etc.  Contact information included at the bottom of this release. Here are some of the upcoming “game-changers:”

  • Under Construction - Event Center

    The new Event Center at Zillah Lakes is nearing completion and looks GORGEOUS!

    The Event Center at Zillah Lakes. Schedule of completion and tour of gorgeous 4500 sq ft lakeside event Center taking shape now and planned to be open for event scheduling by August of this year.

  • Wine Country Inn at Zillah Lakes. This is a 7-room boutique hotel in a scenic lakeside location slated for construction starting midsummer; spring 2016 completion. The project was a finalist in this year’s Entrepreneur contest sponsored by New Vision of Yakima.
  • The new Wine Country Inn at Zillah Lakes is nearly permit-ready.The Bistro at Zillah Lakes: The Scarlet Grape Bistro and Catering is projected to break ground in the Zillah Lakes Town Center, in late summer 2015. The Bistro — which is projected to serve the community, including wineries and wine-tourists, and cater many of the events at the Event Center — is currently projected to open in early 2016. Special dinners prepared by Crystal Ehninger, bistro chef, are being scheduled now at Zillah area wineries to solidify a farm-to-table, wine-oriented menu, and gather project support.
  • A Mini-Park in the Zillah Lakes Town Center is planned to feature a Community Garden and Greenhouse, in partnership with the Community SEEDS non-profit. The project will provide services and job training to people with disabilities, as well as fresh produce and fruit for the Bistro and residents. We are currently in discussions with the City of Zillah about including this concept in our Planned Unit Development Amendment in order to solidify an organic, farm-to-table center to our healthy community. A beach and swimming hole will also be developed this year, pending approvals by authorities, with maintenance projected to come in partnership with the SEEDS project.
  • An Urgent Care Clinic in Zillah Lakes: A letter of intent has been received by Zillah Prairie from a major health care provider for a new 1700 sq ft clinic which is projected to open as early as late summer of this year.
  • Improvements to and extension of our trail system which will extend to four miles of trails for running, walking, riding, viewing natural habitat and life along a stream running though the project.
  • Golf Course 4 (1)An improved Zillah Lakes Golf Course with a new #4 green with a pond setting (playable, June 15)

Reviewing the projected changes, Wes Hemphil, Zillah Prairie LLC Managing Partner said, “It looks like all that work and patience and investment of the last several years is finally coming together to make 2015 the year! We expect our little corner of Yakima County to be hopping pretty much all year long!” While these are the obvious physical improvements, there are many other changes imminent in the near term that may prove even more significant for the project over the long term. Next week, a major revision of the Zillah Lakes PUD Master Plan will be filed with the City of Zillah. It incorporates a new, projected $8 million road project to extend Vintage Valley Road as a Boulevard from Exit 52 to Exit 50 within the next few years. By fast-tracking certain elements of the plan, Zillah Prairie hopes it will be possible to see results at Exit 50 by late 2015 or early 2016. The revision of the vision of the Zillah Lakes Community will likely lead to the most intriguing of the changes: announcement of a new coalition of regional players with a long-term plan to re-make Exit 50 (Buena-Toppenish) off I-82 into the state’s newest dedicated wine country exit featuring landscape and art treatments. While still in the formative stages, the ‘Wine Country Crossroads’ exit (so-named because of direct connections to Seattle, Portland, Prosser, Walla Walla, and 30 great wineries and vineyards concentrated in the hills above Zillah) is intended to draw people off the freeway for wine, but to also orient them to other rich experiences throughout the local area — from fishing and hunting to sports, Legends Casino to museums, wineries to microbreweries, urban-style entertainment and restaurants in Yakima, and a virtual cornucopia of healthful fresh and artisan food choices throughout the valley. “It’s weird,” said Hemphill, who hails from Bainbridge Island and is a member of the Group.  “If you didn’t know it in advance, you could drive from Yakima to Prosser without ever realizing that you are here — right in the heart of wine country. If we can bring this project to fruition with our great local partnerships, it could change all that very quickly. Good for the city, good for the wineries, good for Zillah Lakes, and good for the state!” Phase 2 of Zillah Lakes will open immediately: Sale of all but 4 of our single family lots in Phase I has led Zillah Prairie to announce opening on April 30, 2015, of a portion of Phase 2 of Zillah Lakes including Lots 104 – 118 and Lots 151-159 to the public for lot reservations. Virtually all the above-listed lots back onto either the lake or the golf course.  A $1,000 deposit to hold any of these lots is fully refundable until the final plat approval. Depending on demand, Phase 2, which already has most of its infrastructure, may be completed this summer to move forward with residential sales. The New Zillah Lakes Home Center. It will be easy to buy and build a home at Zillah Lakes, and much will be managed over the project’s newly revised website at zillahlakes.com. The Home Center introduces a complete “one-stop shop” to insure professional handling of lot and home sales, design, construction, and financing. Other Home Center partners will manage home and vacation rentals for residents, all provided through an onsite contact team working in partnerships with MLS Realtor, HIMSL Real Estate, Yakima Architect Barbara Cline of Traho Architects, and vacation manager, Goldener Resorts. “We intend to take the confusion out of buying, building, designing, renting and selling at Zillah Lakes. It’s a brand new approach that we expect will yield greater simplicity and confidence for out-of-town and local buyers as well as real estate agents,” said Pat Strosahl, site manager and one of three members of the Onsite Sales Team. Introduction of the professional vacation rental program by Goldener Resorts has an added benefit according to Strosahl. “The service should give second home buyers an easy option to cover part or all of the cost of ownership when they aren’t using the home” With all its existing amenities — plus the new announcements unveiled today — Zillah Lakes proves it is not only here to stay, but poised for enduring success in the years to come.

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About Zillah Prairie LLC, and Zillah Lakes Zillah Lakes is a planned community in Zillah, Washington which will feature, when complete, a 9-hole golf course, a lively town center, miles of walking trails, 17 acres of man made lakes, and over 400 residences, most with lake or golf course frontage. In addition the planned Vintage Valley Boulevard, will be completed within the next few years, using Federal, State, and Local grant funds and loans as well as significant developer contributions. This $8 Million project will open up dozens of acres of commercial land for hospitality, residential, medical, and freeway services for the entire area. Zillah Prairie LLC is the investment/development group for guiding and realizing the ambitious project.”