ELKHART LAKE, Wis. – She’s happiest when she’s in the throes of a construction project, getting to the bottom of a legislative conundrum, or hosting guests, as in thousands of guests every year. Lola Roeh, general manager since 1998 of the AAA Four Diamond Osthoff Resort in Elkhart Lake, Wis., has received the 2014 Wisconsin Tourism Legacy Award, an impressive recognition within the state’s tourism industry, for the can-do attitude that has defined every aspect of her career. The award was announced during the annual Governor’s Conference on Tourism earlier this week.
Along with an impressive list of accomplishments over her 30+ years-and-counting career – a lead voice on the Governor’s Council on Tourism; past chair of the Wisconsin Hotel & Lodging Association and current board member; Wisconsin Innkeeper of the Year not once but twice, first in 2002 and then again in 2012; active member of the local tourism commission and chamber; and respected industry advocate within political circles – Roeh is known for her entrepreneurial spunk complemented by her penchant for giving credit to others.
Every year since 2005, Roeh has led the resort through at least one major development project. There was the construction of the north wing with conference center, spa and restaurant. Then came the addition of the cooking school. Next was a lake deck for casual dining and live music, a lounge for the main floor Elk Room, expanded gardens to serve the hotel’s restaurants, and a significant refurbishing of all the guest suites in the main building and south wing. Currently crews are working to complete a major addition to the conference center that’s due to open this summer.
All the hard work has paid off. The venerable travel publication Travel + Leisure magazine recently unveiled its T+L 500 for 2014, the list of the top 500 hotels and resorts in the world as voted on by readers, and the Osthoff Resort was among the elite to make the list.
“In the Wisconsin tourism industry you’d be hard-pressed to find people who are content to rest on their laurels, or easily take ‘no’ for an answer, or sit back and follow hospitality trends instead of setting them,” said Roeh. “Seeing no issue as too small and no vision as too large are keys to a rewarding career in tourism, at least they have been for me.”
The Osthoff Resort’s web site is www.Osthoff.com.