Democrat File Photo by John Emerson
The Towers are the youngest buildings in the Concord Resort Hotel complex
Concord Plan Could Include
Leveling Buildings, Adding Monorail
By John Emerson
MONTICELLO March 3, 2000 -- Town, county and other officials met for several hours Wednesday with representatives of Cappelli Enterprises, Inc. to review, discuss and listen to plans for redeveloping the Concord Hotel.
The meeting, which was held in New Rochelle, gave those in attendance a preview of developer Louis Cappellis vision for restoring the hotel to its former glory and a chance to view some of the projects the company has already built. The company also owns Grossingers in Liberty, but Wednesdays meeting was restricted to the Concord.
Cappelli Vice-President Marge Schneider declined to comment or reveal the companys plans for the hotel but said an announcement would be coming out soon, perhaps as early as next week.
Among the people who attended the meeting were County Manager Jonathan Drapkin, Legislature Chairman Rusty Pomeroy, Thompson Supervisor Tony Cellini and Thompson Councilman John Washington. Cappelli also invited Industrial Development Agency Chairman Robert Kunis and IDA lawyer Walter Garigliano to the meeting.
Cellini, Washington and Thompson town engineer Richard McGoey, who also went to the meeting, were ferried to New Rochelle aboard a company helicopter. County representatives chose to drive to the meeting rather than go on the helicopter ride.
Reports from those who attended the meeting confirmed that the organization plans to spend about $500 million redeveloping the hotel and its surrounding properties. Although they were reluctant to discuss details of the plan, they said most of the hotel complex would be leveled. They also said that the hotels golf courses would be part of the renovations and that former Masters champion Ben Crenshaw was being approached to serve as the head golf professional at the hotel when it opens.
Current plans call for demolition of the existing hotel to begin in July and the total project to be concluded in 2002, according to those in attendance. They said that Cappelli plans to move forward as quickly as possible, whether or not the proposed St. Regis Mohawk gaming casino at Monticello Raceway is approved.
Along with the hotel and its renovations, Cappelli is including a health spa, riding stables and other amenities, all accessed by an internal transportation system that one person described as a monorail. Parking for hotel guests would be in outlying areas surrounding the hotel, and the monorail system would provide transport to the hotel and its amenities.
When Cappelli and his operating company, Concord Equities, took over control of the hotel from Joseph Murphy in September, Schneider said the combined ownership of both the Concord and Grossingers gives us the opportunity to develop a cohesive program for two major resort properties. That process has already begun for the upcoming golf season.
Recently, billboards along Route 17 have blossomed, jointly marketing golf courses at both locations as Golfs Sweetspots. The company has also developed golf packages for the upcoming golf season, which include rooms at the Concord clubhouse and rounds of golf at both locations.
Cellini said the golf courses would be open no later than April 15.