An Update: Want to Buy the General Lafayette Inn?

It would be nice to have the lights back onThe fate of the General Lafayette Inn seems to be of ongoing interest to beer drinkers and potential business owners far and wide – our previous post on the topic is constantly receiving heavy search traffic and many return visits.  And if you are one of those looking to re-open the bar, your chance has come at last.

After much legal wrangling, the General Lafayette Inn (and its outbuildings) are featured in a sheriff’s sale scheduled for August 31.  Sovereign Bank is aiming high – the amount they’d like to get is $1,081,376.98 (plus another number just north of $3500 in costs).  One presumes the high sticker price comes from loans they made to open the ill-fated Tied House in Philadelphia proper – it’s hard to imagine the Lafayette Hill location commanding that sort of value, even with the brewing equipment and liquor license – but it’s also possible that a much lower bid might be accepted on the day.  (A slight aside: there used to be a streetcar line from the city that stopped right in front of the General Lafayette – having decent public transit would make its location much, much more attractive – but alas, the prospective buyer will have to make do with the parking lot).

Two parcels make up the current property – the houses behind the main colonial building that were once used for bed & breakfast accommodation are separate from the restaurant and liquor license – it’s also possible that those could be divided, though given the layout, it’s difficult to see how that would be usefully accomplished without some fairly heavy redevelopment which could further detract from (or possibly destroy) the historic context (and, potentially, fabric) of the main building.  As discussed before, the site has great potential, but it needs some careful planning and thoughtful management.

Hopefully someone with a respect for history, knowledge of great beer and some business creativity will be at Courtroom A at the Montgomery Country Courthouse in Norristown by 1 pm on August 31st with a view toward taking on docket #201017050 – local beer fans (and, one might guess, the resident ghosts) will be grateful if the General Lafayette ends up in safe hands.

Update (August 31, 2011): The property was sold for costs – if you know the buyer, we’re all ears…

Update (October 5, 2012): Still on the market

Update (March 13, 2013): A new hope

3 thoughts on “An Update: Want to Buy the General Lafayette Inn?”

  1. Where did I put that million dollars? I had it just a minute ago!

    I have such good memories of the General. It was one of my first regular hangouts when I started drinking craft beer. There’s nothing quite like that colonial atmosphere indoors, especially in the winter when they had the fireplaces going. It was also the first home of Stone Soup, which has gained legendary status for Philly area drinkers.

    I had always hoped to stay in the inn for funsies one day. Hopefully, the General will go to a good home.

  2. Can you tell me what the status of the General Lafayette Inn is? Every time (2xDaily min) I drive by, my heart sinks. I ain’t got the money but I got the skills and the skills I lack can certainly be augmented by all the other’s who feel the same way I do about saving this treasure. I’m sure there’s a group that can get together and bring back this great establishment.

    Hoping this doesn’t fall on deaf ears,

    Michael Wrightson
    Lafayette Hill, PA

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