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|Articles - May 2012|
|Monday, April 23, 2012|
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The couple already has several hotel property turnarounds to their credit. They purchased the Lake of the Woods lodge and cabins between Ashland and Klamath Falls in the fall of 1998 and undertook an aggressive overhaul of the shopworn property. By the summer of 1999, Lake of the Woods reopened. Improvements continued but that initial flurry of activity set the stage for the resort’s comeback. (The Neumans sold it in 2008.)
Their restoration of the Ashland Springs Hotel in downtown Ashland was equally challenging. Shuttered when they bought it in 1998, the Neumans reopened it in 2000 and have turned it into a popular place to dine and spend the night. Its upscale restaurant, The Lark, serves Oregon farm-to-table food and beverages almost exclusively. The management team that renovated that hotel and remained to operate it is now being engaged in the Lithia Springs Resort turnaround.
“We have an established team in place with 12 years at the [Ashland Springs] hotel and we’ve learned a lot of things about how to deal with seasonal market properties,” Doug Neuman says. “It’s been an inn. We want to turn it into a resort, with a beautiful pool area, Jacuzzi and spa. We’ll have complete food service, continue to add more cottages, have bikes available for guests, events that celebrate everything we have here in the valley.”
Becky Neuman’s vision for the property, now renamed the Lithia Springs Resort, is nothing short of turning it into a healthful destination resort that pays homage to all things Oregon. She sees guests coming for the mineral spring waters, organic food, resort gardens and mountain views, and the clean Ashland air.
“Our properties celebrate the natural beauty of Oregon, its organic foods and the health and wellness we cherish here,” she says.
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The media coverage about Pope Francis must have put me in a Biblical frame of mind. Because after touring the latest phase of the South Waterfront development, a mind boggling 1.5 million square feet of office and retail space that will spring up north of the aerial tram over the next few years, I couldn’t stop thinking about the massive project as a modern day creation story.
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