The newly renovated Gorge Inn reopened its doors for the first time on May 23, 2014 after nearly four decades of neglect. Located on old Main Street in Newhalem, the dining facility was well known back in the 1930’s as the place for tourists to enjoy a famous “chicken dinner.” Visitors traveled from Seattle by car, bus and train to learn about, admire and marvel at the Skagit Hydroelectric Project, a series of three hydroelectric dams built to supply clean, affordable and environmentally conscious energy to the City of Seattle.
As part of the Skagit six year renovation plan, 15 historic homes, the general store and the Ross Lodge were retrofitted and rehabilitated to meet modern safety, conservation and building codes. The historic Gorge Inn will return to its original function of supplying meals for City Light crew members who must travel to the Skagit Project to do maintenance and operate the facilities. The Ross Lodge work recently received the Valerie Sivinski Award for Outstanding Rehabilitation and will provide much needed conference rooms.