SEASIDE PARK - A Seaside Park motel that was badly damaged by a fire and Superstorm Sandy will celebrate its reopening today for its longtime guests.
The Belvedere Motel was gutted by a fire in May 2012, forcing owners Mike and Johanna Smith, who have lived at the motel for 18 years, to shut down and make repairs.
Months later, floodwaters from Superstorm Sandy caused severe damage to the building and created new problems for the owners. At no point did the Smiths decide to give up on their home and business. After months of construction, the motel is now ready for guests.
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“There was no way I was going to give up my livelihood,” said Mike Smith.
To celebrate the reopening, the Smiths offered their longtime guests a free room for the night. There was also a band performance and food donated by local restaurants.