Details of ICONA Windrift Deal
Shanna Kelly | Seven Mile Satellite
Photos | Shanna Kelly
Friday, the ICONA Resorts officially announced that it has acquired the Windrift Hotel. This purchase makes the ICONA Resort Group not only the owner of two neighboring oceanfront hotels but the owner of the island's largest oceanfront hotels.
Despite the ICONA Avalon and Windrift being right next door to one another, the hotels won't become mirror images. "The iconic Windrift name and identity will remain as a soft brand under the ICONA umbrella," Caitlin Kelly Humienny, Director of Marketing for ICONA Resorts, said in an email. However, with the transition, the Windrift will follow the ICONA's training and culture, which it credits for its high ratings in the state and country. The Windrift joins ICONA Resorts' other New Jersey locations: ICONA Avalon, ICONA Cape May and ICONA Diamond Beach.
Moving into the 2021 summer season, the Windrift hotel and restaurants will be run by the existing team as normal to provide a smooth transition. This means menus will remain the same. "The current Windrift management team and chef are remaining on the team and will continue operating the restaurants, making updates to their menus, etc. as they have for years," Humienny said. And, pending the borough's approval, the Drift'n Away food truck will remain in operation this year and for future seasons.
Existing Windrift gift cards will be honored in the 2021 season and in the future, but for now, they can't be used at other ICONA locations. "In the future we hope to have gift cards that will be able to be utilized across all locations," Humienny said.
Humienny was asked twice via email if hotel and restaurant prices will be increased to match the ICONA Avalon prices now or after renovations. No response to this question was received.
According to Humienny, there's no information at this time as to the cost of the acquisition, but the plan for the renovations will cost more than $5 million and are set to begin this year and be completed by summer 2022. The Windrift will remain open during its prime season of May through October. "We plan to renovate the property during the Cozy Season when the property has historically been closed to guests," Humienny said.
As for the eight condos that have been owned and rented out by the Windrift, "The Windrift will remain as owner of the existing condos and will continue to rent them out to guests as they have been in the past," Humienny said.
The island is no stranger to the impacts of the pandemic, and the ICONA is no exception. "Like everyone, ICONA has felt the impacts of the pandemic; however, by following all guidelines we remain strongly positioned for a fantastic 2021 season at both ICONA Avalon and the Windrift!" Humienny said.
For those worried about losing aspects of the Windrift they've come to love over the years, Humienny noted: "The Windrift has been a beloved Jersey Shore destination for over 50 years. With the utmost love and respect for what the Windrift offers to the Seven Mile Island, ICONA is happy to welcome this beautiful hotel into our family of properties. ICONA’s goal is to enhance the Windrift so guests can continue to make life-long memories in the place they’ve come to love!"
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