Great news for those who love the Bay House restaurant and its classy vibe, (and we are many). I ran into co-owner Bud Negley, M.D. at a social function the other day, and he told me that plans are moving ahead for a boutique hotel just east of the restaurant on the North Naples property. “We’ll have maybe 40 to 45 rooms and there’ll be a broad lawn extending all the way down to the Cocohatchee River,” Dr. Negley reports. “At least two and a half acres of this seven-acre parcel will be mangrove preserve.”
But wait. It gets better. “We’re going to put in a cooking school. So you could come, say, for three days of making chocolates or mousses, stay in the hotel and eat in the restaurant,” Dr. Negley says. “We’ll have a reception hall for weddings or business meetings, a small sandwich shop with a case of pastries—and, naturally, all of the goods will be made on the premises.”
Dr. Negley credits his business partner (and cousin) Peter Tierney with so much of the creative thinking in moving things forward. “He is,” Dr. Negley says, “razor-sharp and a great entrepreneur with 30 years in the restaurant and hotel businesses and has experience as a chef, too.” It’s difficult to predict when all these additions will be ready, but the first zoning approval is in place, and they’re on their way. Dr. Negley spent 12 years as a physician making people feel better and—after 25 years in the medical malpractice insurance business—he’s back to a very different form of a feel-good enterprise. “I’ve never had more fun in my life,” he says, and I think this means good times ahead for us, too.