Renovated Ashworth Eyes Bright Future
Hampton Union, Friday, May 18, 2007
[The following article is courtesy of the Hampton Union and Seacoast Online.]
[Photo by Amy Root-Donle]
HAMPTON -- The new owner of the Ashworth by the Sea hotel said his goal is to make the 95-year-old hotel on Ocean Boulevard the cornerstone of Hampton Beach.
"We believe in the Ashworth," said owner Mark Stebbins. "A lot of people have been coming here for years and I promise you that we are going to stay true to its roots.
"Our goal is to make the Ashworth the cornerstone of a year-round Hampton Beach."
Stebbins made the announcement Wednesday night during a celebration party to unveil what he is calling the first night of the "new" Ashworth by the Sea.
While the popular hotel at 295 Ocean Blvd., is celebrating its 95th anniversary, it had also just undergone a $1.2 million hotel renovation project that updated 63 guest rooms and refreshed the lobby and hallways in the North Tower.
Town officials, business owners and longtime guests over the years came out to partake in the festivities and to welcome the new owners to Hampton Beach.
Peter Coutis, general manager of the hotel, said the last time the hotel underwent a major renovation was in 1988 when it was owned by the Grandmaison family.
The family members, who ran the hotel for 52 years, sold it last year to S&S Hotels of Manchester.
"While the old owners took great care of the building, it had grown a little tired," Coutis said. "We wanted to give it a more contemporary and crisp feel."
Renovated guest rooms received new wall coverings, carpeting, window treatments, furniture and bedding, flat screen televisions and lighting. Bathrooms in the rooms have new vanities, lighting, commodes, flooring and wall coverings. New carpeting, wall coverings and lighting fixtures were installed in the hotel corridors.
Stebbins said he is extremely excited about owning the pristine hotel at Hampton Beach that is known for its first-class treatment and oceanfront accommodations.
The hotel had a very successful winter and hopes to build on that next year.
"To wake up and see the ocean every day, it doesn't get any better than that," Stebbins said. "This is a natural resource that you can't get anywhere else. Our goal is to continue to build on that.
"If the Ashworth can make Hampton Beach a year-round community, I think we have done some wonderful things."
Stebbins said the hotel management is planning more future renovations for the hotel that was built in 1912 by Col. George Ashworth.
"In the next few years, we would like to have all the rooms redone," Stebbins said. "We are hoping that at some point we will be able to add more rooms and expand.
"We want people to remember the great old days of the Ashworth and appreciate the new years."