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Chris LaBarge explains the design of his proposed 90-room hotel on the shore of Lake Flower at Wednesday night's Saranac Lake planning board meeting. Photo: Chris Knight, courtesy <em>Adirondack Daily Enterprise</em>
Chris LaBarge explains the design of his proposed 90-room hotel on the shore of Lake Flower at Wednesday night's Saranac Lake planning board meeting. Photo: Chris Knight, courtesy Adirondack Daily Enterprise

New Saranac Lake hotel design presented

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The design of a 90-room hotel proposed in Saranac Lake was presented publicly for the first time last week. Malone developer Chris LaBarge wants to locate the upscale, $15-million hotel on the site of three existing Lake Flower motels.

Village planning board members said they like the look and design of the hotel, but the height of the nearly 60-foot building remains an issue.

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Reported by

Chris Knight
Adirondack Correspondent

LaBarge said the building was designed to match the architecture of some of the old hotels of the Saranac Lake area and throughout the Adirondacks. The building includes a wraparound porch and a steep mansard-style roof with integrated dormers.

This architectural rendering of a proposed 90-room, 60-foot-tall hotel on Lake Flower, presented at Wednesday night's Saranac Lake planning board meeting, shows how it would look from the lake. Drawing: courtesy VIP Architectural Associates
This architectural rendering of a proposed 90-room, 60-foot-tall hotel on Lake Flower, presented at Wednesday night's Saranac Lake planning board meeting, shows how it would look from the lake. Drawing: courtesy VIP Architectural Associates
LaBarge also said he's worked to reduce the height of what was initially proposed as a five-story building.

"Really, what we've done is we've lowered the roof height from the last concept that I brought to you in August; this has gone down over 9 feet," he said.

Planning board member Scott Stoddard said he likes the design, but said he's concerned about the hotel’s height, given its location.

"It's not far off the road,” he said. “It’s a long stretch. And I understand the screening elements and whatnot, but it's a tall building that stretches a long distance along the edge of the road there, and the lake."

Stoddard said a three-story building would be more appropriate. But LaBarge said that doesn’t fit the economics of the project.

"We won’t have a project if it’s a three-story building because to accomplish what we need to, we can't put rooms on the first floor," LaBarge said, "otherwise we're not creating an iconic destination resort in Saranac Lake, so the project wouldn't go."

The project is being reviewed as the village’s first ever planned development district, which gives the village board of trustees the final say on the building’s height and other issues.

LaBarge said he's working with the state Adirondack Park Agency on a visual analysis of the proposed hotel. He expects to present that to the planning board at its meeting in November.


Chris Knight reports for the Adirondack Daily Enterprise.

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