Cool. We’ll take a suite, with water views. Above is the Chequit Inn, a 37-room inn that re-opens tomorrow on Shelter Island. Not that this is a new property — far from it. The grand old Chequit, which began life in 1872 as a religious retreat for Methodists, has been in operation as a hotel for some 120 years.
New owners David Bowd and Kevin O’Shea, hoteliers who also own inns in Provincetown, Mass., paid $3.35 million for the property and sunk a tidy sum this past year into an extensive renovation. Decor-wise, we hear there’s a lot of French gray, white-wood bed frames and tribal-inspired rugs. The design “celebrates the property’s Victorian heritage as well as its high society heyday with a fresh, modern take,” O’Shea says. During the aforementioned golden age, celebrity guests included everyone from Marilyn Monroe to the Kennedys (errr…hopefully not at the same time).
Under the new management, did we mention that Jack’s Stir Brew coffee (we’re suckers for that) will be served? The latest owners are pulling out all the stops, hipster-quotient wise: There’ll also be pastries from Baked, which hails from Red Hook, Brooklyn. And then Wampum, a local surf and skate shop company founded by Montauk brothers Marley and Lennon Ficalora, will open up a retail location over Memorial Day Weekend. Dude.
Something patrons will have to wait on: The inn’s new bar and restaurant Red Maple, headed up by Chef Richard Pims, and casual White Hill Cafe, won’t open until June. Until then, during the last two weekends in May, there will be limited raw bar menu and a selection of wine, champagne and beer (well, that’s all we need anyway).
Side note: We like how Bowd and O’Shea, more known to audiences on the Cape via their Salt Hotels, introduced themselves to Shelter Island. Last fall, the duo held a tag sale at the old Chequit, where everything from silverware to antique mirrors went for bargan-basement prices. They then donated proceeds to the Tot Lot, a playground for small children on the island’s School Street.
Bowd and O’Shea say they were drawn to the Chequit for its dramatic location in the Heights, a point of land on Shelter Island’s northwest corner. (Chequit, by most accounts, is an Indian word for a type of fish caught in spring waters.) “It is a magical spot that offers guests a relaxing escape with a strong sense of place and history,” Bowd says.
Rooms start at $195 per night, and the hotel is an 8-minute drive from the Shelter Island South Ferry Terminal. (Lodging could come in handy, in the event you miss the evening’s last ferry back to the main land.) For more information, check out the Chequit’s site.
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