Nevele Grand Hotel
The Nevele Grande Hotel was a high rise resort hotel located in the Town of Wawarsing, just outside of Ellenville, New York, that closed its doors in 2009. The Nevele (NEV-uh-lee) dated back to the days of the Borscht Belt, opening in 1903. “Nevele” is “Eleven” spelled backwards — according to lore, after the eleven nineteenth-century schoolteachers who discovered a waterfall within its present-day property. Its property included a once highly regarded 18-hole golf course and a 9-hole golf course which are also closed and have fallen into disrepair.
Originally named simply Nevele, the resort was renamed the Nevele Grande when it merged with the adjacent Fallsview resort after the Nevele was sold by the original owners in 1997. President Lyndon B. Johnson once stayed at the Nevele, to dedicate a new hospital in Ellenville in 1966. By 2006 the Nevele Grande had fallen on hard times and the Fallsview property was sold off. The Fallsview has since reopened as the Honors Haven Resort and Spa. The original Nevele property, containing a distinctive high rise building, remained open for several years after the split as the Nevele Grande resort. Owners Mitchell Wolff and Joel Hoffman struggled financially and failed to pay taxes and eventually shut down the resort down without notice after the 2009 Fourth of July weekend.
On September 1, 2009, an auction of the property was canceled the day before it was to occur because a buyer was allegedly found. However, by the time the auction was scheduled the property had fallen into a state of disrepair, including "musty staircases and rooms, big and small, with odd smells wafting out of them.". The hotel remained unsold months later, although Hoffman was still attempting to generate revenue with a deal to sell timber on 100 acres (0.40 km2) of property. He also renewed an agreement to let Nextel put cell phone antennas atop one of the hotel's buildings.
On March 26, 2010, New York State Supreme Court Judge Mary Work granted Wolff ownership of the hotel in light of Hoffman's failure to pay Wolff an earlier $2m judgment. The initial dispute arose when Wolff sold Hoffman 99% control of the hotel in exchange for lifetime health benefits, a deal on which Hoffman almost immediately reneged. Judge Work described Hoffman's mismanagement of the hotel "staggering," and upbraided him in court for failure to be forthcoming.
In May 2012, Nevele Investors LLC, a subsidiary of Claremont Partners Ltd., which had purchased the resort, announced that the Nevele Grande would undergo a $500 million redevelopment to turn it into a resort and casino, subject to approval of state legislation to allow casino gaming. The 1966 tower and entrance lobby, ice skating rink, and golf course would be retained in the new complex.
- Fischer, Molly (September 1, 2009). "Faded Catskills Classic Has Mystery Buyer; Currently Seeking Backup". New York Observer. Retrieved 2010-03-01.
- Bosch, Adam (March 26, 2010). "Nevele owner loses resort". Times Herald-Record (Middletown). Retrieved 2011-12-18.
- Doxsey, Patricia (September 1, 2009). "Nevele Grande Sale in Works". Daily Freeman (Kingston). Retrieved 2010-03-01.
- Brooks, Paul (September 1, 2009). "Group Buys Ellenville Hotel". Times Herald-Record (Middletown). Retrieved 2010-03-01.
- Bosch, Adam (October 11, 2009). "Despite promises, Nevele Grande still unsold". Times Herald-Record (Middletown). Retrieved 2011-12-18.
- "Mysterious Foreign Millionaire Buys Nevele Grande Hotel". Yos lz Neias. September 2, 2009. Retrieved 2010-03-01.
- "Nevele Hotel in Catskills Set For $500 Million Redevelopment". The Jewish Voice. May 2, 2012. Retrieved 18 May 2012.