Oregon's Lake of the Woods Resort gets $3.5M upgrade

Oregon's Lake of the Woods Resort gets $3.5M upgrade
Work on the Lake of the Woods Resort in a photo from the resort's Facebook page

LAKE OF THE WOODS, Ore. (AP) — Modern, but still rustic.

While owners of the Lake of the Woods Resort are investing more than $3.5 million to upgrade the lodge and resort, owners John Doherty and George Gregory emphasize they're taking steps to ensure the historic lodge retains its classic, rustic look.

"We're trying to make it a glorious place and keep that historic flavor," Gregory said.

"It will look like it was built in 1922, but it will have all the amenities," Doherty said. "The idea is to leave something behind for the betterment of the community and to provide a nice place for people to come to and have a good time." >>> Photo Gallery

Crews are hustling to get the resort, including the lodge, its restaurant and bar, along with the marina, cabins and RV park, ready to reopen May 1 after being closed for the month of April.

Resort visitors will notice major changes at the lodge, including a new bar, new restrooms, new windows and new kitchen.

Because of the limited construction season, other improvements will be seen in coming years. In 2012, the restaurant capacity will be doubled with a 3,000-square-foot addition.

By 2013, the lodge's second floor, reached by a new grand stairway and a new elevator, will include a 625-square-foot bar, conference room and large windows that provide lake views.

Also planned is a 34-foot gazebo at the water's edge.

"We're looking to make it a four-season attraction," Doherty said of the resort, which he bought in 2008. "There will be all kinds of reasons to be here all times of the year."

"He's the man with the grand vision," Gregory said of Doherty, the principal owner who also has a Klamath Falls real estate business.

"We have some pretty intricate plans," Gregory said. "We are hoping to be the most famous destination in Klamath County, after Crater Lake."

That long-range vision includes a lodge with a restaurant and bar capable of hosting 350 or more people, a new RV park and nearly doubling the number of cabins to 50 or more. New cabins are being gradually added in the area that previously housed the RV park, which is being moved to a new location. Under a plan negotiated by Doherty and the Forest Service, cabin buyers will receive a 20-year, limited-use agreement, be allowed to use the cabin 30 days a year and receive income from summer season cabin rentals.

Doherty and Gregory both credit excellent working relationships with Forest Service officials and Don Andrews, a Klamath Falls carpenter and contractor, for helping the ongoing upgrades move ahead. Among the unseen improvements are in energy efficiency and technologies being implemented in the renovations.

"I'm excited, really excited," Doherty said. "Lake of the Woods seems to be magical."

Information from: Herald and News

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.