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Abandonment of the Pines Hotel
August 19, 2003 4:39 PM   Subscribe

Borscht Belt Memories When I was a kid my family would all pack up and go to the Pines Hotel. Located in South Fallsburg NY, it was classic Borscht Belt even when we visited it in the 70's, with Morris Katz painting using his trademark toilet paper to manically dab the trees with color, racing to staple the frame and sell the painting to somebody to that quasi-celebrity fellow who was known for the Simon Says games in the lobby. The hotel has been abandoned I have found out and a pang went through my heart -- surely I will have to take my gal Jenn up to visit the ruins. The photos at the site are interesting and the descriptions are too. I was hoping to go back there and rediscover the place but who knew it would be this way.
posted by RubberHen (21 comments total)

 
More evidence of the roof starting to lose its structural integrity. Also, notice something strange? Like... The pool has been cleaned! What the hell is that about!?

My guess would be there is a skateboard involved.
posted by thirteen at 4:43 PM on August 19, 2003


From the Morris Katz site.

These are not just any T-Shirts!
These are promotional shirts created for me to wear and give away at personal appearances. There are 10 different designs and only 50 left in stock as of August, 1996. I promise you, I will only sell you ones I have never worn! If you like one-of-a-kind T-shirts, these are for you.

posted by Razzle Bathbone at 4:57 PM on August 19, 2003


bungalow life
sheppys / east of vegas [beware embedded music]
lapidus cottages
catskills institute photo gallery

how remarkable that you would post this link when i've just been exploring the "hebrew himalayas" the last day or so!
posted by quonsar at 5:03 PM on August 19, 2003


opps, corrected link to catskills institute photo gallery
posted by quonsar at 5:09 PM on August 19, 2003


"When I was a kid my family would all pack up and go to the Pines Hotel."

I just hope no one tried to put Baby in a corner.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 5:16 PM on August 19, 2003


There's something strangely satisfying in seeing Caucasian affluence reduced to a dichotomy of faded memories and current sharpnel.
posted by ed at 5:57 PM on August 19, 2003


There's something strangely satisfying in seeing Caucasian affluence reduced to a dichotomy of faded memories and current sharpnel.

That is easily the most bitter thing I have read all day.
posted by thirteen at 6:06 PM on August 19, 2003


Very interesting. Exploring abandoned buildings is something I've enjoyed for it's strange melancholy since I was a kid. Defunct shopping malls are some of the latest net finds. And those abandoned mental asylums are good for some ponderings.
BTW, a friend of mine in the Catskills built about half his house using discarded beams and huge windows from the abandoned Grossinger's years ago.
posted by HTuttle at 7:23 PM on August 19, 2003


actually, some of the old hotels are going to become casinos, i hear...

and my mother and stepfather met at a singles weekend at the Concord : >
posted by amberglow at 7:30 PM on August 19, 2003


This is absolutely fascinating. Who else vacationed in the Catskills as a kid? I remember staying at a place called Pine Lake Manor in Cairo that is probably closed by now (no phone book entry or web address).
posted by dr_dank at 8:43 PM on August 19, 2003


That is easily the most bitter thing I have read all day.

That is easily the most hilariously literal inference I have seen all month.
posted by ed at 9:34 PM on August 19, 2003


My family went up to Grossinger's all the time, often taking me (as an infant) along with them. Sadly, the place closed down circa 1980. My family still mentions it with affection.

One reason why my family went is that my great-grandparents were fairly Orthodox Jews, and so rather than going through the hassle of throwing out all the bread products in their Manhattan apartment and bringing out two new Passover-only sets of dishes and silverware, they could just pack up and go to Grossinger's for the week and eat their kosher-for-Passover food on their kosher-for-Passover dinnerware. Seder for 1000, anyone?

Plus, it was a huge Jewish community up there. Nearly everyone they knew would be up there, or at a nearby hotel/resort like the Concord, anyway. Even family members like their kids and their kids' kids (my parents) who weren't really that religious would go up there for the week too, like a family getaway where they could all do stuff together all week. Like Bingo or miniature golf.

Today, people and families (including mine) go to Las Vegas for that kinda experience.
posted by Asparagirl at 10:23 PM on August 19, 2003


Isn't this the place where Art Spiegleman goes with his Dad in Maus? Where the Dad plays Bingo despite not being a guest?
posted by jontyjago at 2:06 AM on August 20, 2003


Wonderful! recall: "back then" it was a place not that far from The City, and easy enough to get to. Without air conditioning, airlines etc, many Jews from NY fled there to get a vacation, relief from the heat etc. Now things have changed. Many a show biz person got his start in the many great hotels. And I am also am reminded of the many vacation spots that were for summer or winter only that have now become year-round, or nearly so. Things change. But we love to preserve what memories we have of an Eden that has slipped away.
posted by Postroad at 6:38 AM on August 20, 2003


I just hope no one tried to put Baby in a corner.

Morning coffee up my nose, thanks Mr. Crash.
posted by Oriole Adams at 6:39 AM on August 20, 2003


Cool links! For anyone interested in a nostalgic vacation on the cheap, I highly recommend (just got back, in fact) Rose Mountain Cottages, an encampment of 5 little bungalows--a vestige of grander days.
posted by cowboy_sally at 6:43 AM on August 20, 2003


It's always nice to see something from home. My favorite hotel ruin is The Overlook on, of course, Overlook mountain. Nice hike, too.
posted by Cerebus at 7:12 AM on August 20, 2003


Oops. this is the link I meant to post. Wrong copy buffer.
posted by Cerebus at 7:15 AM on August 20, 2003


I would love to buy one of these places, renovate it and turn it in to a spa / retreat...but campy...kitschy...fun. I wonder where I find real estate like that...and what venture capitalist I could talk into funding it....

*wanders off to research real estate*
posted by dejah420 at 7:30 AM on August 20, 2003


The Concorde was for years the home of the NY State Fire Chiefs Association's annual convention. Imagine the place full of fire trucks, fire equipment vendors and of course, firefighters. It was also, sadly, the biggest thing they had all year and eventually concerns over it's continued viability drove the convention to the state fairgrounds in Syracuse. Gambling didn't get there in time to save it, I guess.
posted by tommasz at 8:05 AM on August 20, 2003


The spa/new-agey retreat thing seems to be the current wave in the Catskills.
posted by HTuttle at 10:51 AM on August 20, 2003


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