A group of Virginia Beach residents is using the power of Facebook to spread their message of protecting the Cavalier Hotel.
Chris Bonney founded the group “Save the Old Cavalier Hotel” after finding out that the Oceanfront landmark was up for sale.
A family feud between the property owners led to a judge ordering the liquidation of assets including the hotel.
Bonney says his group isn’t affiliated with any of the buying or selling of the property, but instead people who have grown up in Virginia Beach and want to see the Cavalier protected.
“This group doesn’t represent the owners, the sellers, the court appointed trustee – [they are not in] any way interested in buying it,” Bonney said. “It’s merely people who are interested in protecting this landmark.”
To that end, people in the group have been e-mailing city council members and making their voices heard – harnessing the power of 21st century social media to protect a 20th century building.
“This is the continuing evolution of civic engagement. Typically there would have been meetings. We would have gotten together, we would have had a chairman,” Bonney stated.
Bonney says the group members are realistic and accept that there may be some development by whomever purchases the property, but they hope the hotel they grew up with will be saved.
“It’s where we learned to swim, it’s where we went to dances, if there was an important social event in Virginia Beach during the 20th century it probably took place here at the Cavalier,” Bonney said.