Rosario Resort lays off employees as major upgrades planned by new owner

Feb 13, 2024, 12:03 PM | Updated: 1:21 pm

Rosario Resort...

Rosario Resort. (Photo: Rosario Resort & Spa)

(Photo: Rosario Resort & Spa)

Rosario Resort & Spa has “let go” all of its employees as it prepares for a major upgrade and new ownership.

An employee at the resort told MyNorthwest that employees weren’t told anything other than “they were let go.”

“That’s just not true,” Christopher Peacock, General Manager of the resort, later told MyNorthwest. “We gave our employees a severance package and are helping them find new jobs on the island.”

However, Peacock said that the resort does not know when and if its former employees will be rehired.

Rosario was purchased by an unrevealed Orcas Islander, who Peacock said, “The community will love.” The sale goes through at the end of February.

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“We are excited to be the owners and caretakers of Rosario,” Jerrel Barto, a principal in the new ownership group, stated on the website. “As Fidalgo Island residents and boaters in the San Juans, we’ve always loved the islands and understand Rosario’s importance to the region. We look forward to working with the Orcas Island community to help Rosario reach its potential under the Resort’s approved Master Plan. Restoring the Moran/Rosario legacy will be a project to be proud of.”

The Orcas Island resort announced last year it had been sold. The Barti Family has owned Rosario since 2008.

On the website:

The new owner plans a substantial upgrade, beginning with the historic Moran Mansion. The Mansion, including the Mansion Restaurant, Moran Lounge, Spa, Museum, and other facilities within the Mansion itself, will be closed as of February 20, 2024 for a period to accommodate the extensive renovations. The marina and grounds will remain open; however, overnight lodging will briefly close from February 20, 2024 through March 31, 2024 for the transition, reopening on April 1.

The resort said that existing reservations are being canceled.

It told potential customers that if they want to cancel a reservation on or after April 1, they can until Feb. 22 and their deposit will be refunded.

The site said that after Feb. 22, reservations and deposits will be handled by the new resort operator.

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Customers cannot make reservations after April 1 during the brief transition period.

Bill Kaczaraba is a content editor at MyNorthwest. You can read his stories here. Follow Bill on X, formerly known as Twitter, here and email him here.

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