|FIRM||Robert McKinley Creative Services|
There goes the neighborhood. Again. King & Grove, the hotel company that opened the Surf Lodge in 2008 in Montauk—at the formerly down-market eastern tip of Long Island's South Fork—has kicked off summer 2011 by reopening Ruschmeyer's nearby. Back in 1952, it originated as a rustic, nautical-theme summer getaway on a 3-acre property featuring 19 guest cabins, a restaurant, and a swimming pool.
With the water drained and sand and Ping-Pong tables added, the pool has morphed into a beer garden, but Robert McKinley Creative Services carefully retained and restored what its namesake principal, also a Ruschmeyer's co-owner, describes as a "Dirty Dancing kind of feel." Baby may not mind being put in the corner, however, at the 72-seat restaurant. Its Japanese-style lanterns lend a pleasing glow and a mid-century vibe to long pine tables split up into shorter sections by slatted dividers, which can be removed for a communal experience.
The flashback theme continues in the cabins, where most furnishings are vintage: wicker headboards, dressers with brass-cleat pulls. Beachy white paint on the existing knotty-pine floors and walls is enlivened by vaguely ethnic-looking flat-weave rugs. For a splurge, book the only cabin suite, Lucky 13.