Hundreds of people turned out Thursday to support the Amsterdam Waterfront Foundation and to take a tour of the newly renovated Amsterdam Castle on Florida Avenue, Amsterdam, NY.
Paul Gavry, president of the foundation, said the fundraiser exceeded his expectations with two tours, one at 3pm and another at 6pm, which he said brought in approximately 150 to 200 people each. He estimated the foundation could realize somewhere between $5,000 to $6,000. The money will be used toward bringing in a variety of musical groups to perform at Riverlink Park this summer each Saturday evening in July and August. Upcoming performers include Mark Doyle and the Maniacs, Orquesta Akokán, Frank Vignola, The Big Takeover, Laurie Lewis, Robbie Fulks, Big Soul Ensemble, and The Sweetback Sisters. Visit riverlinkconcerts.com for more information on the performers.
Nigel Ghotbi, owner of the building, acquired the former National Guard armory building in 2013 from the Phemister family, who had previously done some of their own renovations to the building. Originally, Ghotbi said he planned to spend $700,000 to $800,000 on additional renovations, but ended up spending “a lot more” over the course of the past three years, adding hotel rooms and a grand hall in the center of the building designed to make the space feel more like a medieval castle rather than an armory. A total of 62 original paintings and a number of replicas of famous paintings adorn the grand hall, stair cases, and other hallways in the building
He and his wife also didn’t originally plan on residing for too long in the building either, but he said after meeting people in the community, he decided to stay and now spends most of this time in Amsterdam.
Ghotbi recently announced that the building is open for hotel room bookings, weddings, and other special events. Bookings can be made online.