Red Lion getting more than just a makeover

Chris Koebelin, general manager of the Red Lion Silverdale Hotel, stands in front of the newly renovated lounge last week. - Photo by Kassie Korich
Chris Koebelin, general manager of the Red Lion Silverdale Hotel, stands in front of the newly renovated lounge last week.
— image credit: Photo by Kassie Korich

From the bar and restaurant to the guest rooms and meeting facilities, the management of Red Lion Silverdale Hotel are continuing the extensive renovation on the nearly 20-year-old hotel.

“The goal is by mid-2007 it will be a new hotel,” said Chris Koebelin, general manager of the Red Lion.

The extensive project began with the recent renovation of the lounge which included a new bar and liquor cabinet, resurfaced hardwood and new paint. Still to come are new tables, chairs and barstools.

“We’re changing the concept, modernizing it,” Koebelin said. “We’re trying to build up more of a local business. We want to make the bar the 5:30 place to hang out after work.”

To attract the local crowd, there are now several specials offered in the bar. Specials include Monday Night Football with all-you-can-eat hot wings for $5.95. Thursday nights are Ladies’ Nights with $2 drink specials and karaoke. Half-price appetizers also are offered during happy hour from 4 to 6 p.m., daily.

“We’re really gearing up toward business folks, we want them to come by and have a martini and enjoy the ambiance,” Koebelin said.

Patrons also can dance the night away to a disc jockey on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights.

The renovation of the bar was completed last month and Koebelin is pleased with the feedback he has recieved from the local community. The renovation project continues with work on the guest bathrooms as well as the public restrooms. Work on the guest bathrooms is being done one floor at a time as to not disturb hotel guests.

“We’re completely gutting the guest bathrooms as well as the public restrooms and replacing them with granite and marble,” he said.

The restrooms are not the only changes that will be made to the guest rooms. All 151 rooms will be completely renovated with work scheduled to begin at the end of 2006.

“We’re going to gut everything and start over again,” Koebelin said.

The former Mariner’s Grill restaurant has recently been renamed to Josef’s Restaurant, after hotel owner Josef Diamond, and now features an upgraded menu which includes all prime meats and wild Alaskan salmon.

“We want the restaurant to become a destination,” Koebelin said. “We want it to be a free-standing restaurant and not known as the restaurant in the hotel.”

Josef’s will remain open during its renovation which is scheduled to begin next month. Management is planning for new woodwork, a new location for the hostess stand and all new silverware and linens.

“We’re really excited about the restaurant, we started the new menu a few weeks ago,” Koebelin said.

By March, he expects the new built-in espresso bar to be open which will replace the existing Oyster Bar between the lounge and restaurant. The new espresso bar will offer Tully’s Coffee.

Renovations also are scheduled for the meeting facilities which are made up of a wall room which closes into three sections, the east and west bay meeting rooms and two small board rooms.

“With the $1 million to $2 million we’ll probably be spending on this (entire project) we’re willing to invest in this community and give it a better product,” Koebelin said.

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