The Village Inn
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VI Then and Now

The Village Inn has enjoyed a long and colorful existence. Recently restored, she offers contemporary comforts and cuisine while preserving yesteryear's charm.

 

VI Then and Now

A tradition on the Russian River since 1906

The Village Inn was established in 1906 when the Ludwig Family built their summer home under ancient redwoods on the south bank of the Russian River in the Village of Monte Rio. In 1908, hotel construction began and it became a friendly, comfortable summer resort known as Ludwig’s Grove – possibly to identify with the nearby exclusive and world-famous Bohemian Grove.

In the 1930s, her name was changed to River View Inn and then to Holiday Inn, after the 1942 Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire classic movie was partially filmed at the Village Inn while Bing was at the Grove. In 1952, she was renamed Village Inn and became an all-seasons resort.

1942 Film Holiday Inn

Scenes from the 1942 Paramount Pictures film, Holiday Inn, starring Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire were filmed at the Village Inn – with some help from artificial snow.

Film historian Ken Barnes called it “the definitive Hollywood musical of the 1940s.” It’s about Jim Harper (Crosby), a singer who decides to escape the rat race of nightly performances in clubs by opening an inn in the country that’s only open on holidays.

The movie is famous for two things: 1) It brought together three greats in the prime of their careers – Bing Crosby, Fred Astaire, and Irving Berlin; and 2) “White Christmas” became the most popular pop song ever written, as well as winning the 1943 Academy Award for Best Movie Song, written by Berlin.

Village Inn Present Day

Current owner since 2001, Mark Belhumeur is a 40-year veteran in the hotel industry. Mark views himself as the current caretaker of a grand old lady who has had a long colorful existence and will be a favorite to generations to come.

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Village Inn & Restaurant · Monte Rio Vacation Wonderland, The Heart of the Russian River · 20822 River Boulevard, Monte Rio, CA 95462 · (707) 865-2304
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