The following was written out of passion. Passion to not watch a historical building be destroyed and the passion that drives me to make my dreams come true. If you are in the know of Asbury, you know how much this small city has changed and you know what it is about to be. I am proud to be part of a team who still wants to maintain the history and artistry of the town and who does not want to see high-rise apartment buildings selling one bedrooms for millions of dollars.
Two years ago I had a client meeting with Patrick Fasano, a well known developer, who needed help with a large bar and restaurant concept known as The Complex. During my time working with Mr. Fasano at The Complex, I expressed to him my dream of owning and operating a beach side hotel where I could incorporate everything I grew up loving about the shore; surfing, kayaking, paddle boarding, boating, fishing, biking, hiking, and so much more.
The Complex earned a profit in less than a year of operation, something unheard of in the industry. Though my contract ended and I was on to my next project, I received a text from Mr. Fasano to meet him at 208 Third Avenue in Asbury. I arrived to an old Victorian beach side hotel with Mr. Fasano standing on the beautiful wrap around porch. He said “Diana, I bought you your dream.”
A year later, though I thought I would be choosing bedding at this time, no progress has been made. The multi-billion dollar waterfront redeveloper (we all know who that is…), is falsely claiming that this historic hotel has not operated as a hotel and should not be allowed to open as a hotel. In the 1980’s the owner had to call it a retreat due to the condition the city was in and the people that would use the hotel for “one hour”. This previous owner offered to sell 208 Third Avenue to this redeveloper multiple times, and they said no each time. More to note, this developer and Patrick Fasano made a land swap deal in 2012 due to many of Mr. Fasano’s properties being in their eminent domain. This deal gave Mr. Fasano 10 of the lots that surround 208 Third Avenue which he had to exchange for other historic properties (recently most notably, The Lanes). So when he found out at that 208 Third Avenue was for sale it was a no brainer purchase.
208 Third Avenue is NOT part of the waterfront redevelopment. 208 Third Avenue has been a hotel since the early 1900’s! Basically Asbury Park is claiming that since it was a retreat it is no longer a hotel…. how is that possible? When owners of a building change a sign on the door does that mean it automatically gets rezoned? 208 Third Avenue is a hotel, has always been a hotel and has always been zoned as a hotel.
Is Asbury and the residents really going to allow this billionaire dollar company to bully out the small man and bully the city? I can promise you, I do not want to be any type of competition for them, nor could I really. Think about it, they have more money and time than I EVER will. Just like the articles from the 1920’s, The Powhatan will cater to the younger beach goers and young families, always offering the lowest rate possible, free games and free live music. Please help my dreams come true. More importantly please help preserve a historic building and bring it back to life! Spread the word, get locals involved, if we cannot reopen this hotel it will be bulldozed down. I do not want to lose another piece of history, do you?
Zoning hearing is set for May 8th. Hope to see you there.
-HBIC Diana Marie
you can email the City Manager and ask for his support on allowing this project firstname.lastname@example.org
New Jersey History Society sites that they can date 208 Third Avenue back to 1911 as operating as a hotel