Historic Shelter Island hotel and restaurant The Chequit is hosting a holiday lighting ceremony on Black Friday in what will be its last public event before its much-anticipated grand reopening next year.
The Chequit is scheduled to reopen May 1, 2022, following extensive renovations to the building, and its return coincides with the 150th anniversary of its founding, according to Stacey Soloviev, co-owner of the hotel.
“I love The Chequit,” Soloviev says. “I love the history of it. I love the building. I love what it means to the community.” She and her ex-husband, Stefan Soloviev, of East Hampton, chief executive officer of Kansas-based Crossroads Agriculture — one of the nation’s largest landowners — purchased The Chequit last year and Stacey manages the property.
While the renovations include structural repairs and new windows, old favorites such as the horseshoe-shaped bar and pool table will be back, the owners say.
“Stacey bought the hotel thinking that it would need a little bit of work and then it could reopen, but that was not the case at all,” says Ben Levine, the hotel’s general manager.
“The whole hotel’s going to be completely new.” The hotel recently hosted a preview of its dining options for a small group of select participants and had guests in 11 of its rooms over the summer amid ongoing construction, but bookings for all 35 rooms are slated to become publicly available around Christmas. As Dan’s Papers has reported, Chef Noah Schwartz and his wife, Sunita Schwartz, who have been serving farm-to-fork delicacies at Noah’s in Greenport for years, will be opening three restaurants at The Chequit. Soloviev says The Chequit’s popular Monday burger night will be back.
The lighting ceremony will be even bigger than last year. Scheduled for 4 p.m. November 26, light food and drinks will be served, carolers are expected to sing, and Santa Claus will be arriving on a Shelter Island Fire Department truck. But the biggest gift to the community — the hotel’s return — won’t arrive until the New Year.
“The hotel has been a labor of love,” Soloviev says. “If I had known what it was going to take, I don’t know if I would have bought it. I’m very thankful that I did, but I had no idea how hard it was going to be, but I’m happy to preserve it and we should get at least another 200 years out of it.”
The Chequit is located at 23 Grand Ave. in Shelter Island Heights. It can be reached at 631-749-0018. Rooms bookable at thechequithotel.com