Operators Sought For Pisgah Inn Along The Blue Ridge Parkway

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A new concessions contract is being sought for the Pisgah Inn along the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina/David and Kay Scott

The National Park Service recently released the prospectus for a ten-year contract to provide lodging, retail, and food and beverage services at Pisgah Inn on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

The Inn, located 24 miles southwest of Asheville, North Carolina, is one of four lodging facilities on the parkway. The other three are Peaks of Otter Lodge near Roanoke, Va., Rocky Knob Cabins, and Bluffs Lodge, the latter of which has been closed since the 2010 season for lack of a concessionaire.

Pisgah Inn has 51 guest rooms in three two-story motel-type buildings. Each guest room has a private balcony or patio, most of which provide excellent mountain views.

One of our great pleasures in staying at the inn is relaxing on the balcony during the early morning with a cup of coffee. In addition to offering guests great mountain views, the inn is also noted for the excellent meals served in its dining room.

Revenues at the inn averaged about $3.2 million annually during the last three years. Food and beverage service provided approximately 45 percent of revenues with lodging and retail representing 36 percent and 19 percent, respectively. The National Park Service projects 2015 revenues should be in the range of $3.35 to $3.85 million.

A new concessionaire will be required to make an estimated initial investment of $5.6 million, consisting mostly of the leasehold surrender interest of $3.9 to be paid to the existing concessionaire should it not bid or not win the bid. An additional $650,000 will go toward personal property and inventory owned by the current concessionaire.

The NPS is also requiring the winning bidder to undertake a $575,000 facilities improvement program consisting primarily of a new fire suppression system. The prospectus requires that the concessionaire pay the NPS a franchise fee equal to 1 percent of gross revenues. In addition, it will be required to contribute 2.5 percent of revenues into a repair & maintenance fund.

Proposals from prospective concessionaires must be received at the NPS Southeast Regional Office in Atlanta by August 6. The National Park Service will lead a site visit at Pisgah Inn on May 1.

Comments

My experiences with the existing operation for several meals and one overnight stay during the past three years have been very positive. Let's hope the situation going forward continues to be a good one for visitors and the concessioner.