The Hotel Rifton

During the 1920s, 30s, 40s and beyond, to the north of New York City, near and in the Catskill Mountains, Spanish immigrants established an archipelago of rural hotels or “villas” that catered primarily –but not exclusively– to fellow Spaniards who lived in the city, and wanted to enjoy fresh food and refuge from the heat and humidity of New York’s brutal summers. The Hotel Rifton, owned and run by the asturianos Alfredo Díaz and Pilar Montes was one such getaway; one of the snazziest, in fact. (ie, there was indoor plumbing!) Luz Damron, née Díaz, daughter of Alfredo and Pilar, has written a memoir that poignantly evokes the summer world of Spanish immigrants post-1945, “The Rifton Hotel: A Summer Place.”

[Photo courtesy of Luz Damron.]