CATSKILL — Investors from New York City plan to breathe new life into the former Friar Tuck Inn.
The 200-acre property and vacant resort were purchased for $5.8 million in March by NY-32-Realty Group Inc., with Elena Fu named as the primary owner, Savarino Companies Director of Business Development and Finance Thomas Zawadski said.
Details of the acquisition were released Wednesday.
Savarino Companies, of Buffalo, will serve as the project manager. The resort was previously owned by L&H Resort Systems, which purchased the property in 2011 for $2.4 million.
The Mindfulness Resort will feature about 400 hotel rooms and amenities such as fishing, hunting, canoeing, horseback riding and ice skating, with a possible water park, Zawadski said.
“Overall, you’re probably looking at $60 million to $100 million,” he said.
Higher costs are anticipated if the water park is included, Zawadski said.
Without the water park, Zawadski expects the project would be complete in 2021.
“With our phase one opening in March, we’re planning to have about 100 rooms, plus the opening of what we’re calling ‘The Village,’” he said.
The Village refers to 10 buildings on the property that will be turned into commercial space, Zawadski said. New expansions on the property will be open every six to eight months, he said.
“One of the challenges of that site is that the infrastructure will have to be done internally,” Zawadski said, adding that the company will be working on putting in sewer and water access over the next few months.
Greene County Industrial Development Agency Executive Director Rene VanSchaack is optimistic about the new project.
“It’s been purchased by a new investor group,” VanSchaack said. “Myself and Warren Hart met with them once. They are in the process of putting together a strategy for the redevelopment of the resort.”
Hart is the director of the Greene County Economic Development, Tourism and Planning Department.
The group has not submitted an application to the IDA at this time, VanSchaack said.
“As far as what their intentions are, I’m hesitant to say too much,” he said. “I will tell you that the former owner had it for over seven years and nothing progressed. The new owners, they seem to have their act together.”
VanSchaack described Savarino as “highly qualified” for the job.
“From the IDA’s perspective, we’re pretty optimistic and hopeful that the new owners take it in the right direction,” he said. “It would be wonderful to see that property addressed instead of being an eyesore.”
Earlier this year, L&H, the former owner made good on a payment of $749,000 in back taxes, Greene County Treasurer Peter Markou said.
L&H also paid a $7,000 court fine for having improper electrical work for its Hello Panda Lantern Festival this winter.