Long Beach hotel pays off $375G in taxes, fees
The Allegria, an upscale Long Beach hotel that the city considers important to its economic well-being but one that has been mired in tax arrears for three years, has pulled out of debt -- and is opening its prized rooftop to the public.
The hotel -- the only oceanfront luxury hotel on Long Island, its owner says -- amassed about $375,000 in city, county and state taxes and fees after opening in 2009.
But the hotel paid off the debts last week after reaching an agreement in bankruptcy court, and is exiting bankruptcy, hotel representatives and city officials said.
The nine-story hotel -- where some oceanfront rooms rent for more than $1,100 per night and the restaurant's filet mignon is $48 -- will also open its rooftop to the public for a series of weekly music-themed events beginning Wednesday, hotel general manager Michael Witte said.
"We look forward to becoming the crown jewel of the hospitality industry here on Long Island," Witte said.
The 143-room hotel, located on West Broadway, owed the taxes on its land, Witte said.
City officials said the hotel's viability is crucial to the success of Long Beach's downtown and summer tourism industry.
"It's so important to the city to have a successful hotel, and we're very excited to work with them going forward," City Manager Jack Schnirman said.
The hotel's decision to provide more public access to the rooftop, which has a pool and offers sweeping views of the Atlantic Ocean, comes after requests from city officials that the roof become more of a public asset.
The Allegria will open the roof at 8 p.m. Wednesday for a weekly "classic disco" night. The hotel will begin offering a salsa night at 8 p.m. on Mondays starting June 25. A Tuesday reggae night, also at 8, begins the following day.
The events will feature live music or disc jockeys and will be accessible to the public for a cover charge.
Karen McInnis, vice president of the West End Neighbors Civic Association, said the increased access to the roof is nice, but the big news for the city is that the hotel is out of the red.
"I think they need to do a reset and focus on their core competencies. Stick to the basics and then grow," she said. "The bottom line is that this business has to be profitable to stay."
The hotel's owner, Allen Rosenberg, built the Allegria on the site of the former King David nursing home, which he bought for $22 million in 2007. The Allegria is named for his mother, who died in 2006.
The facility includes a ballroom that seats more than 200 and the rooftop pool the owners say is the only one of its kind on Long Island.
Rosenberg said in a statement that he is glad the hotel is back on firm footing.
"We're right here and we are here to stay," he said.