Last year, struggling Montauk resort Gurney's Inn was taken over by real estate moguls George Filopoulos and Lloyd Goldman. A multi-phase, multi-year refresh and renovation means that Gurney's will soon have a sleek new look. First up is a brand new 38-room oceanfront building, with private verandas and floor to ceiling windows encasing custom built furniture and wire brushed hardwood floors. The new aesthetic is the work of Michael Kramer, a young designer who is already considered one of New York's most impressive new talents.
Food and beverages will be under the stewardship of Jennifer LeRoy, daughter of Warner LeRoy, famous for Tavern on the Green and Russian Tea Room, among others. The Beach Club, launched last year, and the spa will also be refreshed, as will the fantastic sand-filtered seawater swimming pool, the only one in North America.
Thrilled that an East End icon is being saved (heck, our mom used to babysit there back in the 1950s), we sat down with George to chat about Gurney's.
You're a Montauk resident. How far do your roots go in Montauk?
As a kid, my family's annual vacation was a week in Montauk during the month of July. My wife and I started renting out here when we were newly married and have owned a home for the last 10 years.
What made you decide to take on Gurney's as a project?
Its location and entitlements, which can never be replicated again.
Why do you think Gurney's had lost its way?
Its previous highly complex ownership structure prevented any repositioning of the property, and deferred maintenance prevented Gurney's from reaching its potential. Regardless, the sheer beauty of its location and warm staff still made the resort a draw over the past several years.
What was the hardest part of the process? Was it working with the time share owners?
The timeshare owners were engaged, thoughtful and extremely supportive of the transaction. The number of moving parts and pieces to the puzzle are what took some time to complete.
What are you most proud of?
Leading the repositioning of a truly iconic property and watching our team put forth so much effort towards this project.
What is your favorite feature of Gurney's?
I have two favorite features: the private 1,000 foot beach (with its own restaurant and beach bar) from which we can pamper guests during the warmer months and the only ocean fed seawater pool and spa in North America where guests can unwind during the cooler months.
· Gurney's Inn [Official site]