By Jill Nagy
The Fran Cove Motel on Route 9 in Lake George, a recently modernized facility about half a mile from the lake, was recently purchased by Mudassar (Manny) and Ahmad Ghuman, for $1.1 million.
The acquisition is the ninth motel in the area owned by members of their family, but the first venture for the Ghuman brothers.
It is the second recent motel sale on the lake. Mitchell B. Muroff, Esq., principal with MD/Mitch Muroff Hospitality Group said the EconoLodge-Lake George sold in February to Amber Hospitality Group.
Regarding the Fran Cove Motel, the Ghumans said they plan no major changes to the facility and expect to reopen it on Memorial Day weekend. One of the new owners, Manny Ghuman, seemed unfazed by the fact that this will be a new venture for him and his brother.
“The family will help,” he said.
They can also expect advice from the sellers, Linda and Tim Kissane, said Gloria Caldaroni Ford, the real estate agent who brokered the deal. She is also a cousin of the previous owners,.
“I think they’ll be fine. They are very bright and really personable,” she said
The motel has 35 rooms. It has no lake access but is about a mile from the public beach in the Village of Lake George.
Ghuman expects to hire two people to help run the motel, and add two more during the summer season. Room rates will range from $60 a night for a single room in the off-season to $90 to $120 a night for suites.
The new owners live in Latham and operate a Sunoco service station off Northway Exit 23.
Ford said she is seeing “a lot of activity, a lot of people asking about motels” in Lake George.
Lake George is a tourist destination area. In addition, “it is a great place to raise a family” and, consequently, seeing more interest from people wanting to live in the area year-round, said Ford.
“Lake George is getting a little facelift. Everything is revitalizing in Lake George,” she said.
She sees a new, more tech-savvy, generation coming into the area. They are seeking more modern facilities, including modern room reservation systems. Fortunately, her cousins, the Kissanes, recognized that trend and modernized the motel before putting it on the market.
“I grew up in the motel business,” she said. She listed three ingredients for success as a motel owner: keep a clean place; keep things in good condition; and be friendly with people. The Ghuman brothers, in her judgment, “have the ingredients.”
The EconoLodge boasts 50 updated guestrooms, an indoor pool and spa, an outdoor pool and meeting room. It sold for $1.955 million, according to Muroff.
The Moore family has owned the hotel (the former Lake George Inn) for 40 years and felt it was time to move on.
The new owners, Yatish, Chandrika and Hardik Shah, have operated several other hotels including the Four Seasons Motel in Malone, which is currently listed for sale with Mitch Muroff Hospitality Group.
The Shahs plan to be hands-on operators and will live on site during the summer months, according to Muroff.
MD/Mitch Muroff Hospitality Group serves the greater New York-New England region as a boutique hospitality brokerage firm representing independent and franchised hoteliers.
Last fall, the company was involved in the sale of the Ramada Queensbury/Lake George, a 110-room hotel at 1 Abbey Lane, Queensbury, to Paresh Patel, Darsham Patel, Minesh Hirpana and Akash Patel. The transaction closed on Sept. 26 for a price of $3.2 million, said Muroff,
Mitch Muroff Hospitality Group represented the seller, MPRV Enterprise LLC, in the transaction and was also responsible for securing the buyer, Velanja Hirpara LLC.