The grand reopening of Virginia Beach’s historic Cavalier Hotel will take place in March, but United Jewish Federation of Tidewater’s Society of Professionals (SOP) received a special “sneak peak” on February 1.
Axel Suray, executive vice president of Gold Key PHR, guided 10 members of the SOP steering committee on a full tour of the hotel.
During the tour, Greg Zittrain, SOP co-chair, recounted his memories of visiting the Cavalier as a child and his impressions of the transformed hotel, “When I was a kid, the Cavalier always had a mystique. Once I even met Muhammed Ali there. So, it was disappointing when it closed. But, today was an incredible experience. What they have done here is revive the grandeur of the Cavalier.”
During the tour, Bruce Thompson, local real estate magnate and Cavalier Hotel owner, greeted the group and learned about the Society of Professionals.
“It was a treat to have Bruce greet us, and exciting to see such an iconic landmark in Virginia Beach beautifully revitalized with modern grandeur,” says Stacey Neuman, SOP co-chair. “Bruce was excited to know that a group from the Jewish Federation was touring and that we are looking to partner with the hotel in the near future.”
Every space in the hotel lived up to expectations. From the arrival experience, to the new Becca restaurant’s ocean views, to a spa that will be the envy of town, and to the in-house distillery which produces vodka, bourbon and whiskey—the Cavalier was an amazing experience for all. But, most importantly, beyond the luxury, the preservation of the Cavalier’s history remains throughout the hotel. A highlight of the tour was the historic Hunt Room where Suray noted how President Richard Nixon, a frequent hotel guest, loved to visit the room in the summer, turn the air conditioning on full blast, and stoke a roaring fire in the Grand Fireplace. According to Suray, legend has it that the lost section of 18 minutes of tape from the Nixon Watergate recordings may have found its resting place in the Hunt Room’s Grand Fireplace.
UJFT’s Society of Professionals is a broad and diverse community of Jewish professionals. It meets throughout the year to network, learn, and give back to the community. Contact Dusty Heist-Levine for more information at email@example.com or 757-965-6136.
– Dusty Heist-Levine