More than a month between Blogs is not a good track record, admittedly. Our intention was to write down and compile our journal entries at least once or twice per week. Then we took over the Lodge on the busiest weekend of 2020, and have not slowed down until this very week (and really, not even now). We're not making excuses, but this has been exhausting. In a good way, though.
We ran ourselves ragged from day one, trying to learn the ropes with the help of the Lodge's previous owners. Frank & Cathy have been great instructors and mentors, as well as gracious neighbors as we figure out the intricacies of running a property like this. We owe them a debt of gratitude.
We have been struggling to get the restaurant up and running, and even as I write this blog, we're still waiting for some equipment and trade work to be done. However, we're nearly there. We are about to send out the invitations to our private 'Soft Opening', and I'll be sure to share how everything goes. Plans are to open around a week after that, at which point we can then take reservations and online orders.
Yesterday, we hung our new signs out by the road. This was a cathartic experience for us. Although, as I wrote, we're very grateful to those that came before us, we believe this is the beginning of a new era for The West Arm Lodge and Restaurant. We intend to get things really rolling again here, from the cottages, to the boats, to the Restaurant, etc. With one proviso: incremental changes. To attempt everything at once would be financial suicide for us, meaning there would be no Lodge in the future. That is certainly not the plan.
We came in knowing there were many repairs that were needed, as well as our plans to start upgrading/modernizing the cottages and facilities. However, we quickly found out that the budget for the repairs far exceeded the planned levels, forcing us to delay some of the upgrades and divert funds to the fixes. Because when you run a Lodge like this, you have to remember one thing over all others: the Guests always come first. If a roof is leaking, a dock wobbly, etc., that has to come first and foremost if we intend to develop and grow a positive reputation and word of mouth.
Stay tuned for the next blog in the coming days (not weeks, I promise!). We have some exciting news and details to share, from the Restaurant to the winterization of a couple of our cottages, to some of our planned upgrades. We're glad you're with us on this journey.