Richard Loughead, a local contactor and developer, purchased the five acre/two hectare site now known as Dolphin Bay Resort & Spa in June 1989. At that time, the property was approved for a 200-plus-room hotel typical of other beachfront hotels in California. After studying the unbelievable beauty and power of this one-of-a-kind location, the developer decided to design and build a completely unique destination resort.
During the fourteen years spent acquiring the necessary permits to build Dolphin Bay, Loughead partnered with Spalding Wathen, another experienced developer and contractor from Fresno. Together, both developers shared the same vision and started construction in 2003. Unfortunately, before its completion in 2006, Mr. Wathen passed away. Needless to say, without the foresight and experience of their partnership, this spectacular one-of-a-kind oceanfront resort would not have been completed.