Laughlintown's Ligonier Country Inn to close
The popular Ligonier Country Inn along Route 30 in Laughlintown is closing Jan. 1, the result of a costly court $1.4 million judgment against the property and a pending Westmoreland County sheriff’s sale Jan. 7.
The inn will end with the New Year’s Eve festivities, said Margaret “Maggie” Nied, who owns the property with her husband, Paul Nied. The closing will affect 15 employees, Nied said.
Enterprise Bank of Allison Park received a $1.4 million judgment in court against the Nieds in August. The bank in September 2016 filed a claim against the Nieds, Ligonier Country Inn and their Foxley Farm property in Ligonier Township because they were in default of payments on a loan that had grown to $2.9 million, with interest and attorney fees.
“We chose not to fight the foreclosure,” Nied said.
Charles Leyh, president of Enterprise Bank, could not be reached for comment.
Nied said she plans to retire after spending 33 years operating the 26-room hotel and tavern.
“I’m just going to enjoy life. It’s time for P.J. and I to get to go places and do things,” Nied said.
The inn was built in the late 1800s and was a stop along the Lincoln Highway a century ago. Nied said her parents renovated the inn after buying it in August 1983; she and her husband acquired the property in 1985.
The inn has been a popular place for wedding receptions and banquets, hosting 740 wedding receptions over the past 33 years, she said.
Nied said they tried to sell the inn earlier this year and received some offers, but did not reach any agreements.
“It’s a very, very special place,” Nied said.
Enterprise Bank also foreclosed on the Nieds’ 59-acre Foxley Farm, acquiring it through sheriff’s sale in March for $30,946. The bank had filed more than $3 million in judgments against the Nieds in October 2016 for failure to pay the mortgage, and a judge awarded the judgment in 2017.
The Nieds purchased the property in 2011 and battled Ligonier Township and neighboring property owners over their desire to use the farm as the site for weddings, fundraisers and other events, as well as for overnight lodging, even though the property was zoned residential. Ligonier Township ruled against the Nieds in the zoning dispute, and the case was eventually appealed to Commonwealth Court.
Joe Napsha is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Joe at 724-836-5252 or email@example.com.