While the resort that served as the set for the 1987 movie Dirty Dancing is Pembroke, Virginia's , it was actually the legendary Grossinger's Catskill Resort that inspired the setting for the iconic film starring Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey. Sadly, the once-bustling getaway in Liberty, New York, has fallen into disrepair after decades of vacancy and neglect. But the current owner hopes to change all that by restoring the original "Kellerman's" to its glory days and reopening its doors to the public.
"For 17 years I've been a lone wolf trying to do this, and I really haven't been able to accomplish it because of the enormity of the task," current owner, real estate developer , told the . "But now that [Resorts World Casino] is in fact going to be opening up [in nearby Kiamesha Lake next year], I think the opportunity now exists to have this kind of original dream come true."
Cappelli recently filed paperwork with the State Department of Environmental Conservation that would help with cleanup costs. Chemicals spilled by dry-cleaning and machine repair shops could make part of the property a contaminated site, Cappelli argues, meaning it would qualify for funds to restore soil and groundwater. As you can see, reopening Grossinger's would .
The Catskill resort first opened in the 1910s and, according to the Times, was considered the most glamorous of the 500 Catskills hotels that attracted visitors for regular summer retreats a couple of hours away from the city.
The ballroom was the venue for the Annual Grossinger International Dance Festival, as well as many and weddings. Actress even married Carrie Fisher's father, singer Eddie Fisher, at Grossinger's in 1955.
"Do you want to bring back the old and have some flavor of what was there in the '50s?" Cappelli said. "I want to build what is a 2017 model of Grossinger's — with some sort of memories still there."
Here's hoping we can all have the time of our life soon at the place that inspired the setting of Baby and Johnny's romance!
[ h/t ]