Blennerhassett Hotel undergoing ownership change

PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (WTAP) - Two prominent Mid-Ohio Valley businessmen have announced they are buying the historic Blennerhassett Hotel effective Oct. 1.

Wayne Waldeck, the CEO of Wal-Bon of Ohio, which operates the Napoli's Pizza and McHappy's Donuts restaurant chains, and Lee E. Rector, who operates Lee's Studio and Medi Spa in Parkersburg, announced the purchase in a news release Friday afternoon.

The purchase price for the hotel, which first opened in 1889, was not disclosed. The hotel, currently owned by Sam Ross, will remain open during the transition to the new owners.

"We're thankful that Sam has selected us to take the hotel forward, and are extremely excited to announce that the hotel will soon feature a world class medi spa and fine-dining experience," the new owners said.

They said they plan to retain many of the hotel's current employees while recruiting employees to fill a variety of positions.

Waldeck has more than 53 years' experience in the food-service industry, while Rector has worked for more than 37 years in the spa business.

According to the new owners, the changes will also include new, chef-driven menus and guest chefs.

"Our plans include adding another star to the hotel's rating, with the ultimate goal of becoming West Virginia's second-most well-known hotel," Waldeck said. "None of this can be accomplished without a dedicated staff, and the Blennerhassett team will consist of professionals who will make this happen."

The hotel is registered as a Parkersburg Historical Landmark and with the Historic Hotels of America.