Sincerely, BLLA

The Artisans: Ron Gorodesky

The BLLA Team sits down with Ron Gorodesky, Founder & CEO of Refined Hospitality, as he delves into his experience as a boutique hotelier. B...

The BLLA Team sits down with Ron Gorodesky, Founder & CEO of Refined Hospitality, as he delves into his experience as a boutique hotelier.

BLLA: What is your company’s mission statement?

RG: “Refined Hospitality is dedicated to delivering exceptional hospitality experiences at each of our properties, successfully weaving our culture, and consistency of luxury standards into the fabric of these unique hospitality environments while embracing their distinct historical ties and connections to the community and nature, by incorporating these elements into elevated design concepts and activations.”

BLLA: How did you enter the hospitality industry?

RG: “My first job at 12 years old was washing dishes at my local deli, and it made me realize how much I enjoyed the restaurant environment and industry. I remained at that deli throughout high school and while home from college. Discovering in college that hospitality was a viable profession, I focused on this as my course of study and then honed my skills in the food and beverage business after graduation. Before founding Refined Hospitality, I developed and consulted for several world-renowned brands (including 41 North, Normandy Farms, Moshulu and White Dog Café) over my 30+ year career leading Restaurant Advisory Services.”

Indigo Suite, The Reeds at Shelter Haven

BLLA: What does “boutique” mean to you?

RG: “To me, “boutique” means intimate, and stylish, with a strong focus on design and fully immersive, luxury experiences. At Refined Hospitality, our boutique hotels are inspired by their unique settings, drawing from not only nature but also the inherent qualities of their surrounding communities.”

BLLA: How are you an artisan?

RG: “At Refined Hospitality, we create and build boutique hotels in highly sought-after destination towns, known for their distinct character and charm. These beloved communities are embraced with revitalized resources and elevated experiences through these luxury level, lifestyle hotels we develope. We bring these experiences to life through community collaborations, restaurants, catering, entertainment and spa activations versus the more traditional strategy of finding success through the volume of keys.”

BLLA: Why do you celebrate the path of independence?

RG: “My journey to my current role began in a typical way but ultimately it was the combination of happenstance, experience and opportunity that lead me down this path. In 2010, I was hired by a group of investors to “pencil out” an economically feasible boutique hotel in Stone Harbor – a dilemma that had proved difficult to others. This property, now The Reeds at Shelter Haven and one of the most sought-after destinations along the Jersey Shore, was my introduction to the independent boutique hotel space. This path of independence would not be possible without my team that brings more than 100 years of collective experience in developing and managing destination-driven experiences. This independence has given me the ability to develop prestigious, high-design hotels and restaurant environments in desirable travel destinations.”

Turkish Bath, Salt Spa at The Reeds

BLLA: What advice would you give to first-time hoteliers?

RG: “My advice for first-time hoteliers is to find a strong team that you can trust. A lesson I learned early on in my career is no matter how good you are at your job you need the support of a strong team. I would also tell first-time hoteliers to do their research, trust their instincts and understand that there are going to be setbacks and challenges throughout the process. With the opening of our second hotel, River House at Odette’s, there were speedbumps, including the challenge of opening during a global pandemic, but in the end, my team and I shined and did not let obstacles stand in our way of this successful hotel venture.”

BLLA: What would you say to hotel lenders & investors reading this?

RG: “There’s been a shift in consumer values over the past several years that’s been even further amplified during these last two. Travelers are increasingly seeking the personalized experience and special moments boutique properties offer that chain hotels simply cannot capture. Drivable destinations and the allure and charm of a locally owned and operated boutique hotel with niche programs and curated offerings will only grow stronger in the coming years.”

BLLA: What’s next for you?

RG: “We are always working to expand, and actively exploring new development opportunities to grow our portfolio with a focus on destination towns along the East coast.”


Refined Hospitality is a member of BLLA – view more details here!

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