It's called "glamping," or glamour camping, and its growing popularity has prompted one local businessman to make a major investment in a Cattaraugus County property.
John Hutchins appears to be committing major dollars to transform a former summer camp into The Woods at Bear Creek, a new "glamping" resort in the rugged hills near Franklinville. But Hutchins is betting on the success of another nearby community for his customer base.
"The Ellicottville Chamber of Commerce and business community has been open arms. They are so good to work with because we are a part of the Ellicottville business community. In fact, we even have an Ellicottville P.O. Box so we can use it in our address because all of the Canadians know where Ellicottville is,"explained Hutchins, who has enjoyed success with his renovation of the Rapids Theatre in Niagara Falls.
"There are six million people a year who come to Ellicottville."
While the summer camp contained cabins, tent platforms and other structures that remain a part of the resort, they have undergone a major upgrade to make for a comfortable "glamping" experience. Cabins have heat and air conditioning, showers and flat screen televisions.
The 750 acre property held its grand opening last weekend.