$7.5 million offered for Hermitage Club assets

An initial offer could kick off an auction of Hermitage Club assets.

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This story was updated at 7 p.m. Wednesday

BURLINGTON — Two offers totaling $7.5 million outlined in bankruptcy court documents could kick off the auction process for former Hermitage Club properties.

Rainmaker Mountain LLC is offering $4 million for the Haystack Mountain ski area that had been run as private ski resort before Hermitage Club companies faced financial struggles and went bankrupt; the Hermitage Inn and Snow Goose Inn in West Dover; the Horizon Inn, Haystack Golf Course and undeveloped parcels of land in Wilmington. A separate purchase of the Barnstormer chairlift, a six-person with bubble chairs, for $3.5 million is being proposed by Boyne USA Inc., which owns ski resorts in North America.

Berkshire Bank filed a foreclosure complaint involving Hermitage properties in 2018. The bank and the group of club members who paid for the chairlift agreed to the sale, according to court filings submitted by Raymond J. Obuchowski, the Chapter 7 bankruptcy trustee assigned to the case.

If the court agrees to move ahead with Obuchowski's proposal, an auction will soon be advertised. He is looking for a bid deadline of Feb. 20 with a sale on Feb. 25.

Obuchowski described the sale of the ski area as valuable to creditors and the estate.

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"The Trustee and the secured lenders believe that the total consideration to be paid by Stalking Horse [Rainmaker Mountain] is fair and reasonable and, moreover, the Auction will establish the highest and best offer for the Sale Property," his court filing states.

Alan Tantleff, the court-appointed receiver tasked with preserving the Hermitage properties through the foreclosure and bankruptcy, told the Reformer he could not disclose anything that is not public when asked for information about Rainmaker Mountain.

Robert Coffin, a former Hermitage Club member who had been hopeful about an effort of members to purchase the assets, said he had not heard of the company.

"[T]hat's clearly not a good thing for everyone, as it reduces (probably completely) the club getting going again, which clearly would be the best thing for prior members and local businesses and people in general," he told the Reformer in an email.

Reach staff writer Chris Mays at cmays@reformer.com, at @CMaysBR on Twitter and 802-254-2311, ext. 273.