Although there is a clear opposition to the development of Pulpit Rock, many have voiced the opinion that we need more accommodations in the Town and Village. I believe this “need” may be a myth.
We have a “hotel” in Warwick with 274 beds, each with a five-star review. Every weekend in spring, summer, and fall, hundreds visit and stay in Warwick. They shop downtown, go to orchards and wineries, rent boats, eat at our restaurants, and stay in this amorphous hotel called “Airbnb.”
There are over 90 Airbnb homes (full disclosure, I, nor any of my close friends or family, currently operate an Airbnb rental property) in Warwick and Greenwood Lake with an average of three beds per dwelling and most are full every weekend. Airbnb is the new, improved hotel—more comfortable, accessible, homey, and generally more environmentally sustainable than a traditional hotel complex.
Airbnb is also priced for every pocket — $40 gets you a lovely room in the owner’s house, and $650 gets you the whole of a six-bed historic mansion. When you stay in an Airbnb, you have a personal connection to a resident and a sense of our community that brings you back time and again.
What is more, the payment goes straight to individual Warwick taxpayers, not an LLC or foreign investment group. Besides the Airbnb, there are plenty of charming traditional Bed and Breakfasts, run by local entrepreneurs. A cursory search for accommodations in Warwick turns up many leads, even for last-minute reservations.
I have plenty of friends and family who visit Warwick. I see no immediate need for a large hotel complex. Let’s think realistically about what we have and what we need in the Town of Warwick. Once built, the historic Pulpit Rock site can’t simply be returned to its natural state. Please join me at the Planning Board meeting on Wed., Dec. 18, and make your voice on the matter heard.