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After a lengthy renovation period, The Pridwin reopened under the ownership of Cape Resorts over the summer. (Credit: David Benthal)

The Pridwin Hotel and Cottages have stood proudly and in grand fashion for nearly 100 years on Shelter Island. Now, after a lengthy renovation period, The Pridwin has reopened under the ownership of Cape Resorts, retaining the charm and character that both locals and visitors alike have come to love.

“These old, historic hotels have a spirit filled with the memories and traditions of hundreds of years of vacationers,” said Curtis Bashaw, co-founder and co-managing partner at Cape Resorts. “In order to set it up for another 95 years, we needed to give it new organs.”

Those new “organs” include new wiring, plumbing, and state of the art environmental and safety features. The main building also now has an elevator.

“But when you take it apart, you want to take it apart carefully so that when you put it back together, it still feels like the place that it was,” Bashaw said.

New and vintage abound at The Pridwin. (Credit: David Benthal)

Stokes Architecture + Design of Philadelphia collaborated on the project with Southampton builder Roy “Buddy” Wines”and his firm, RLW4 Builders. Interiors were designed by Brown Hall Design. A program handed out a ribbon cutting last week listed more than 60 local partners on the project.

Casey Graves serves as the general manager of the hotel and Chef Drew Hiatt is running the kitchen.

Longtime owners Glenn Petry and his dad, Dick, also took part in the ribbon cutting last week signaling a connection to the hotel’s rich history, which dates back nearly 100 years. The Petry family has been involved since 1961.

Walking into the restored Pridwin, there’s something new in the air, but the enthusiastic and welcoming staff, gorgeous views of the waters surrounding Shelter Island and colorful but classy design feel distinctly lived in.

“Often in renovations the insides can feel antiseptic, and just sort of brand new,” Bashaw said. “You might save the facade, but you get inside and it doesn’t really relate [to the outside]. We were very careful to respect the original lines of the building and respect the original materials.”

The new Pridwin has 33 guest rooms and 16 cottages, and amenities that include a new Terrace restaurant and Crescent bar. Rates for rooms posted on the hotel website range from $623 for a midweek stay to $978 on a summer weekend, with a two-night minimum. The larger rooms and the cottages, which are $1,000 or more, can accommodate as many as four guests.

The Pridwin has long been a hub for the Shelter Island community, especially during the summer, and locals will be excited to learn that the beloved weekly cookouts will return in 2023. The hotel, which plans to stay open nine months out of the year, is also planning off-season events, such as a Christmas meal.

“We have respect for small towns, the power of a hotel to be an economic influence in a positive way, to be an employer and build traditions in the community,” said Bashaw. “I guarantee you in five years, our holiday meals will be a tradition people look forward to.”

Now come take a tour with us.

The first floor

The main lobby leads to a gift shop, as well as a game room with an arcade machine and table tennis. Each room is boldly colored with the gift shop accented in yellow and white, while the game room has a dark green aesthetic.

The spa

Also on the first floor is a bright, naturally lit spa, offering a menu of full-body massages, facials and body scrubs.

Staying vintage

Much of what’s new about The Pridwin is sourced from its past. The maple wood floors on the second floor were carefully restored. Chandeliers outside the Terrace dining area were discovered by the renovation team in the basement of one of the cottages, rewired and rehung. White wicker chairs with red-pink cushions have been with the Pridwin for much of its 95 years, newly repainted and refinished. 

“You’ve got to let these old places reveal themselves,” Bashaw said. “When people say, ‘gosh, it doesn’t feel lille you did anything,’ that’s the highest compliment.”

Many side rooms are scattered throughout.

The Nook

“This hotel feels like a big house, and people want to entertain in a big house,” said Bashaw, referring to the private dining room. There’s also a private meeting room for corporate gatherings and retreats. The Nook, an adorable smaller room with a TV and space to sit and read, is a particular highlight for some looking for some quiet time.

One of the largest changes to The Pridwin, Bashaw said, actually involved updating the bathrooms. While the Petry family, who are still co-owners of the hotel, had reduced the amount of rooms from 55 to 40 when they purchased the hotel in 1961, Cape Resorts decided to reduce it further to 33 guest rooms and expand the size of the bathrooms and add a vital element, an elevator. Demising walls have been rebuilt for soundproofing. 

The Terrace

The Terrace restaurant, led by executive chef Drew Hiatt, has a menu of classic American cuisine and local seafood. 

“You can have staples like a chicken club as well as wonderful specials,” Bashaw said.

One of The Pridwin’s original signs adorns the wall of the restaurant, atop a new gas fireplace facing a piano where live music is performed most nights. And it all overlooks Crescent Beach.

The views

The guest rooms have stunning views of the resort and Crescent Beach seen through windows with beautiful natural light pouring in.

The pool and cottages

Outside, you’ll find that the hotel’s original pool has been updated with heating and saltwater, a cabana-style outdoor bar area, all complemented by newly planted greenery.

The restored white cottages, perfect for families and groups, are homey and bright with fireplaces and television sets.

Visit The Pridwin at 81 Shore Road, Shelter Island.