TAHOE CITY, Calif. – The heart of Tahoe City, Commons Beach, unveiled its new look last October and local businesses have since followed suit by stepping up with various renovation projects. In fact, throughout the town, renovations have totaled nearly $15 million in the last year.

"The upgrades and aesthetics are beautiful and incredibly user-friendly," Steve Teshara, executive director of the North Lake Tahoe Resort Association, said. "It will give visitors and residents the opportunity to enjoy Tahoe City as a destination rather than simply a base for recreational excursions."

New amenities to the park include a climbing rock for children six and older, upgraded play areas , interpretive signage , improved and widely-dispersed picnic areas , multi-use seating area for 60 (ideal for small concerts or weddings), two large plaza/vista areas at either side of the park and a central entry from Tahoe City with a log arbor and stone walls. Natural colors and materials were used to blend in with the surrounding area and nearly 6,000 native flower, shrubs and trees were planted.

Revamping has not been limited to community areas alone. Albertsons , one of the town’s longtime and highly visible supermarkets, completed a seven-month remodel in February with a refurbished façade and landscaping. The Tahoe City Pharmacy , another boulevard staple, is finishing up it’s overhaul that gives the building a more "old Tahoe rustic" look as well as dividing itself into a quaint market, deli and pharmacy.

Tahoe City’s newest restaurant, Café Echo , replaced what was once Café Cobblestone, directly across the street from Commons Beach. While the latter establishment went out of business after a large structure fire, the owners of Café Echo take pride in their restaurant that now exudes a "rustic cabin with comfort" atmosphere.

Tahoe reservations and info: www.mytahoevacation.com .

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