Sunday, March 3, 2024

After nearly $10 million in damage, Blockade Runner to begin reopening in February

Just in time for Valentine's Day, the Blockade Runner Beach Resort has announced its plans to reopen after incurring nearly $10 million in damage from Hurricane Florence.

Nicolas Montoya, General Manager Blockade Runner Beach Resort
The Blockade Runner on Wrightsville Beach will be out of commission for at least half a year. (Port City Daily photo / Nicolas Montoya, General Manager Blockade Runner Beach Resort)

WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH — After announcing a months-long expected closure following Hurricane Florence, the Blockade Runner Beach Resort is getting ready for business.

The hotel and its restaurant, East Oceanfront Dining, closed after the September storm. According to a Wednesday press release, Blockade Runner will be back open in the spring.

Related: Hurricane Florence damage closes Wrightsville Beach’s Blockade Runner until next year

Reopenings will occur in two phases. First, in time for Valentine’s Day on Feb. 14, the tower building will reopen. This first phase will include food & beverage services, and all event spaces will be available for guests, according to the hotel’s Facebook page.

Next, the balcony building is expected to reopen by March or April, the press release states.

During the storm, the Blockade Runner lost the roof on the balcony building. Roof damage also occured on the tower, resulting in water damage inside.

Nearly $10 million was lost as a result; $5 million in property damage, $2 million in content loss and $2 million in loss of business.

Bill Baggett, co-owner of the resort, said much of the damage on Wrightsville Beach after Hurricane Florence was underestimated.

“Inventory will be tight at Wrightsville Beach in 2019,” Baggett said in the release. “Tourism is a significant part of the North Carolina economy, and I hope we can get all the properties at the beach open as soon as possible.”

All regularly scheduled spring and summer events at the resort are set to continue as usual.

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