Carmel Mission Foundation
Carmel Mission Foundation




The Foundation has received its first Sponsorship Grant for $1,500,000 to restore the historic Blessed Sacrament Chapel. This generous grant was made by one of the Foundation’s major supporters who prefers to remain anonymous. It was the first sponsorship grant received under the Foundation’s new Sponsorship Opportunities program, in which it is seeking major donors to sponsor specific historic structures or courtyards as part of the Foundation’s $20 million Phase II restoration efforts. “It is a great first step towards our goal of raising $10 million before the end of 2015,” said Vic Grabrian, Foundation President and CEO. “It will only take a few more such generous individual to enable the launch of our Phase II work in January of this coming year.”


Photo courtesy of K.C. Jones



Pope Francis announced on January 15, 2015 that he plans to canonize Junípero Serra when he comes to the States this September. Serra’s canonization ceremony will take place in Washington D.C. at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception on September 23.

Fr. Serra was the founder of the first nine of 21 missions in California, including the Carmel Mission in 1771, which was his headquarters. He was also buried there in 1784.

Making Junípero Serra a saint could turn the Carmel Mission, already a major religious and tourist attraction, including a State and National Historic Landmark, into a national shrine, drawing many more visitors to the Carmel Mission and the Monterey Peninsula.


The Carmel Mission Foundation announced on December 9, 2014 that the recent $5.5 million restoration of the Carmel Mission Basilica has received a Project-of-the-Year Award from the construction industry for the Northern California and Hawaii Region in the religious/cultural category. Vic Grabrian, President & CEO of the Carmel Mission Foundation said, “We were pleased to receive this award, as it is a wonderful way to honor the donors who supported the project and demonstrates the care and quality of the restoration work completed by the Preservation Team.” The Basilica restoration project was completed safely, ahead of schedule, and $1.5 million below budget.

Over 140 projects were submitted for this annual competition, conducted by the construction industry’s Engineering News Record (ENR) magazine through an independent panel of industry judges. Judging criteria included collaboration and teamwork, ability to overcome challenges, safety performance, and use of innovative design and construction solutions. The judge’s panel also considered the contribution to the construction industry and community, design quality, and construction craftsmanship.

The Carmel Mission Preservation Team was recently honored at an industry awards ceremony in San Francisco. The Team includes Franks Brenkwitz and Associates, architect of record; Blach Construction, general contractor; Architectural Resources Group, preservation architect; Donald C. Urfer & Associates, structural engineer; on site management; and the Carmel Mission Foundation that funded the project.





Crown Prince Felipe and Princess Letizia of Spain, later to become King and Queen, visited the Carmel Mission on Wednesday, November 13, 2013 in honor of Junipero Serra’s 300th birthday later that month. Vic Grabrian, President of the Carmel Mission Foundation, briefed the royal couple on the history of the Carmel Mission and the recently completed seismic retrofit and restoration of the Basilica. They then placed a wreath on the tomb of Junípero Serra and, after touring the Convento Museum, joined about 90 guests for a private reception in the Mission’s main courtyard. Accompanying the Prince was the Spanish Ambassador to the United States and the President of the Balearic Islands. For more information see the KSBW TV news video.





Friday, December 11, 2015
La Playa Hotel
Corner of Camino Real & 8th Street
5:00 – 8:00 PM

Mingle with locals and visitors while you enjoy regional wines, light bites and music all set to a Christmas holiday theme. All fourteen of Carmel’s wine tasting rooms will showcase their wines, with light appetizers provided by Chef Pèpe’s restaurants and live jazz to set the scene of a lovely evening in the hotel’s courtyard and gardens. All of the net proceeds benefit the Carmel Mission Foundation. For more information and to purchase tickets online, please visit: or call 402-PEPE (7373).