The Board of Trustees has been researching options related to the historic property since it was listed for sale and then placed in receivership last year. The goal was not necessarily to procure the Inn for Denison, but instead to make sure that this important local property was saved and revived. To that end, the college worked with other prospective buyers along the way. Urban Restorations LLC, a Columbus-based business, was seriously considering the purchase of the Inn, and when they bowed out, Denison stepped up to commit to the purchase.
“The Granville Inn’s facilities and functions are vital both to the village and to the college,” said Seth Patton, vice president for finance and management at Denison. “We feel fortunate to be able to act on this opportunity to invest in our remarkable community and in this iconic property.”
He added, “We believe it is important for the continued health of the village and surrounding area to keep the Inn viable. Not only is it a significant local employer, but its services are important to Granville’s downtown and to Denison visitors, as well.”
Built in 1924 in the style of a traditional English Jacobean Revival manor house, the Granville Inn is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Its hand-cut oak paneling and native sandstone walls are signature features of its renowned architect, Frank L. Packard.
The Inn will remain on the village tax rolls and will continue to be operated in its current use, and it will be managed by a separate entity hired by Denison.
“Denison certainly did not plan to become an innkeeper,” said Patton, “but because of the strong ties and shared interests between Denison and Granville, we are committed to this project. The goal is to enhance the Granville Inn, making it a vital and successful business. Weighed against all others, there may be more attractive investment opportunities from a purely financial perspective, but few that are more important to Granville and Denison.”