Once rotting from neglect, Colonial Inn in Hillsborough could be back in business soon

HILLSBOROUGH — The Town Board cleared the way Monday night for guests to once again dine and stay at the historic Colonial Inn in downtown Hillsborough, leaving just a few sticking points to hammer out later.

The board unanimously approved a rezoning request and a special use permit for Allied DevCorp LLC to turn the nearly two centuries old property at 153 W. King St. into a restaurant with a private dining room, a bar and a conference room on the ground floor. A larger event center and four guest rooms will be on the second floor.

A new, two-story wing will provide another 18 guest rooms at the rear of the lot and connect to the main building, a patio and landscaped wedding lawn via brick pathways.

Allied representative Justin Fejfar estimated up to 100 people could occupy the second-floor event center and at least 96 could be seated in the main dining room.

Construction could start by the end of the year.

The inn was built in 1838 and long served as a hotel and later as a popular restaurant. It is on the National Register of Historic Places.

Allied bought the half-acre property in January for $800,000 – $75,000 less than the list price, according to county documents.

Previous owner Francis Henry bought the inn at auction in 2001 for $440,000. It fell into disrepair as he wrestled with the town over renovations and how he could use the property. The town filed an eminent-domain action in 2014 but agreed in 2017 to gave Henry a year to sell the inn.

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(The Herald Sun, 9/11/18)