Leelanau News and Events

The Current Scene At Sugar Loaf, Plus Owner’s Rep Shares An Update

By Emily Tyra | Nov. 9, 2021

Now that main demolition and removal of the abandoned hotel structure is in progress at Sugar Loaf Resort, the property owner — known only as SPV 45 LLC — shared Monday evening that contractor Taplin Enterprises of Kalamazoo, is expected to continue the process for six to eight more weeks, weather permitting.

Ross Satterwhite, who represents the owner, said that removal of environmentally sensitive materials and universal waste demolition was completed in late October. Aging chairlifts and other infrastructure that remains on the ski hill from previous ownership will also be removed.

All materials are being recycled where possible and certain items of historical significance are being removed and preserved in collaboration with the Leelanau Historical Society, which is curating an exhibit on Sugar Loaf's significance in the community.

Satterwhite shared that “This is a big project with the first and foremost emphasis being on safety of the work crew and surrounding community. While it is sad to be losing the hotel and the history it holds for so many, unfortunately, it had deteriorated to the point over the past 20 years, that it was not possible to save.”

But, what’s next for the mountain? “At this point there are no announcements expected in the near term with respect to future plans — as ownership continues to be focused on completing the demolition and proper cleanup of the site. But so far things are going well.”

He added, “It is obviously good to finally be removing what had become a terrible eyesore for the community for so long. I know the ownership appreciates the patience and support that neighbors and the greater community have given the project.”

Upon completion of the demolition work, the site will be backfilled, graded and reseeded. The property is closed to the public.

Photo of Sugar Loaf demolition in progress, Nov. 9, 2021 by Heather Dourron.

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