FOR THE CAVALIER, A FACELIFT TRUMPS THE WRECKING BALL DEVELOPER BRUCE THOMPSON TAKES ON RENOVATION OF ONE OF HAMPTON ROADS’ MOST BELOVED HOTELS

By Elizabeth Cooper

After two decades of replacing outdated oceanfront hotels with upscale, contemporary buildings, developer Bruce L. Thompson is about to take on the biggest project of his life: a nearly $260 million plan that includes the renovation of one of Virginia Beach’s most iconic properties, The Historic Cavalier Hotel and Beach Club.

The founder and CEO of Gold Key/PHR Hotels & Resorts purchased the 86-year-old Historic Cavalier Hotel and Beach Club earlier this summer. Sitting on a hill overlooking Atlantic Avenue with its name etched into a manicured lawn, the stately brick hotel had hosted an array of dignitaries before falling into disrepair.