Friday, April 27, 2012

History of the Catskill Resorts


The Catskills have long been a center of American leisure and recreation; nothing exemplifies this rich heritage more than the history of the grand Catskill Resorts.

The Granit Hotel, circa 1940's
Initially drawn to the area by the scenic beauty and pastoral natural harmony of life in the Catskills, vacationers seeking refuge from the hectic hustle of daily life in New York City began flocking to area hotels in the early 20th century.

By the 1950’s The Catskills had become synonymous with the American leisure lifestyle.  Grand Hotels like The Concord, Grossingers, The Granit, and the Tamarack Lodge gave rise to a unique Catskill culture which drew in hundreds of thousands of visitors each year.

Serving up non-stop meals and endless entertainment, the Catskill Resorts were the training ground for world renowned comedians such as Woody Allen, Mel Brooks, Rodney Dangerfield, Jerry Lewis, The Three Stooges, and many others.  Other popular performers at the Catskill Resorts included Benny Goodman, Mel Torme, and Barbara Streisand.

The Concord, circa 1959
As American attitudes shifted through the 60’s and 70’s, the growing demand for outdoor recreation made the Catskills Resorts a popular destination for people eager to explore the area’s majestic landscape, hike along the regions extensive network of trails, and enjoy the beautifully manicured golf courses which several resorts had to offer. 

By the turn of the 21st century, the realities of a changing world economy forced many of the Catskill resorts to close their doors. Grossingers, The Concord, the Tamarack lodge, and most others have all disappeared.  

Incorporating new opportunities for recreation, health and wellness, the few resorts which remain today are going strong, and proudly continue to preserve the rich heritage of the grand Catskill Resort tradition.  

Formerly The Granit,
the Hudson Valley  Resort today
Formerly known as the Granit, the Hudson Valley Resort & Spa is the perfect destination for groups of all sizes.  Situated on 400 gorgeous acres with stunning mountain views, this beautifully renovated Catskill Resort offers guests an unparalleled Catskill experience.

For those seeking the perfect balance of charm and comfort, the Catskills are still King.

Have a memory of the Catskills to share?  Comment below, and tell us about it!

2 comments:

  1. Great article- brings back memories of my catskill resort days

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  2. Just stayed last weekend with the Mrs. and my son at the former Granit, now the Hudson Valley Resort in Kerhonkson in Ulster County and enjoyed every minute. It is a magnificent spacious edifice and large beautiful lobby. The hotel staff was superb always friendly and helpful. I especially enjoyed the large swimming pool as I am a lap swimmer. The resort reminded me of being at Grossingers years ago so I am glad the Granit is still in the Catskill Mountains to enjoy. I recommend this establishment and please try out the sauna and spa. Thank you to everyone at the Hudson Valley Resort for a most pleasant weekend stay.

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