A proposal to build an 80-room hotel on the property of St. Clements Castle is expected to be a main point of discussion at the Portland Planning and Zoning Commission meeting on Thursday.
The commission is slated to take up an application by the St. Clements Foundation Inc. to construct the inn at the 1931 Portland-Colbalt Road property, which already is the site of a multi-room conference center with beautiful vistas of the Connecticut River.
St. Clements was originally granted a proposal to build the inn, known as the “Garden Lodge,” back in 2002, although the initial design called for an extension to the original St. Clements Castle, land use officials said.
An extension was granted in 2007 and, after the property owners explored new options, a new proposal was filed in June of this year to build a separate inn away from the conference center, officials said.
According to Chief Zoning Enforcement Officer Deanna L. Rhodes, the current proposal is to to build a three-story, freestanding building, with five usable levels of space.
This includes a “habitable attic with six luxury guest rooms (including two suites), and a walk-out basement with functional multi-purpose room, patio, kitchen/dining area and spa facility with massage therapy rooms, sauna, lounge, and hair/nail salon.”
Rhodes said the first floor will be the location of the main entrance having a one-way vehicle drop-off portico, reception lobby area, two multi-purpose conference rooms and bar-lounge area.
The structure is also expected to contain a service access/fire lane will circle the rear of the building and is the location of the proposed fenced dumpster area and loading spaces. The property is also expected to have a helicopter landing area, just southeast in a grass field.
The architect behind the project is George Fellner, who has an office in East Haddam.
The meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. at the .