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Sun Valley plans to revamp iconic Inn

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The Sun Valley resort plans to do a  revamp of the Sun Valley Inn, according to documents obtained from the City of Sun Valley by BoiseDev.

The building will be expanded by about 17,000 square feet. Rooms and public spaces will be revamped, and the total number of rooms is expected to shrink slightly – as it did for the Lodge remodel project. 

The work is primarily confined to the wing that fronts the Kitzbuhelerstrasse in the Sun Valley Village – including 17 revamped guest rooms.

An all-new kitchen will be added, and the current kitchen will be remodeled to include a bakery. 

The Bald Mountain Pizza restaurant will get an overhaul and a new terrace. The historic Ram Restaurant will also get an overhaul.

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Three new meeting rooms are being added to expand the Resort’s existing convention facilities (home to the annual Allen & Co. event among other functions).

The resort will also add a large new office area above the new kitchen.  Many of the back office support functions were formerly housed in the basement of the Lodge, but shortly after the Lodge remodel was completed, that space was quietly converted into additional guestrooms.

The project was approved by the City of Sun Valley’s Planning & Zoning group at a meeting earlier this month. The meeting was first reported by the Idaho Mountain Express.

Though lesser-known than its slightly-older cousin around the corner, the Inn holds a significant amount of history itself.  

The building originally opened as the Challenger Inn during SV’s second Christmas season. One of the quirkiest facts I’ve found in years of reading about the history of Sun Valley revolves around the soon-to-be-remodeled Ram: The Hokey Pokey was invented there. 

From the NYTimes obit of the “turn yourself around” song’s inventor: 

 “(Larry) LaPrise was leading the Ram Trio — its other members were Charles Peter Macak and Tafit Baker — at the Ram Bar in Sun Valley when he came up with the song. It was an instant hit.”

Work will begin in September after the peak summer season (summer is actually busier than winter in Sun Valley). Parts of the project will be done by Christmas – with the project wrapping by June, 2018.

 In other words – they aren’t going to be hokey pokey about it.

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