Dubb: `I Get to Make a Difference in Saratoga'

Michael Dubb in one of the Adelphi units | Tim Wilkin photo


Ask prominent horse owner Michael Dubb what his favorite race that he has won in Saratoga is and you might get an odd answer.

That's because it's a race that hasn't finished yet. But it's getting close.

Here's a hint: it's not being run at the famous horse park on Union Avenue.

This one is smack dab in the heart of the Spa City, right on Broadway.

That's where his latest project, the Residences at the Adelphi Hotel, has been taking shape for the last three and a half years.

The mammoth project, undertaken by Dubb and his partner Larry Roth, will be a sparkling addition to the historic Adelphi, one of the last structures standing that connects the Spa to its glorious past.

Roth, also a horse owner, partnered with Dubb after he bought the Rip Van Dam, which was next door to the Adelphi. The two were then off and running and Saratoga is on the verge of giving a spectacular opportunity to new residents.

“I have to give Larry all the credit in the world,” Dubb said. “He had the original Adelphi (was a partner) and he had the vision to acquire the property next door and do something better. He just didn't know what he wanted to do and he came to me. That was five years ago.”

The $90 million development on the corner of Broadway and Washington Street will feature 79 luxury condominiums to go along with 33 new hotel rooms that are already operating.
Besides being a solid horse owner, Dubb has had the Midas touch when it comes to putting projects like the Residences at the Adelphi together. He is the Chief Executive Officer of the Beechwood Organization, his highly successful Long Island contracting firm.

When he tackled this job, Dubb said he did it because of his deep affection for Saratoga Springs, a city he fell in love with it when he first saw it as a teen in the early 1970s.
“This really means I have created a bit of a legacy,” Dubb said. “That is all I could ask for. Being in the heart of the city and creating the crown jewel and knowing it will be around long after I will, and it will be part of the storied history of the Adelphi Hotel in Saratoga…it means the world to me.”

Dubb first saw Saratoga when he was a long-haired 17-year-old in the early 1970s. He made the trip north from Long Island, driving a teal blue van, one he said he bought new for $2,950 with the money he saved up by cutting lawns.

He had never heard of Saratoga and wasn't into horse racing. He made the journey because a friend and his friend's father were driving up, and, hey, he was 17. Dubb followed in his van and the group camped out and went to the track.

Dubb was immediately hooked on the town and the thoroughbreds.

“I couldn't wait to come back,” he said, and he did, the next summer.

He slept in his van, remembers parking it in Congress Park on Aug. 9, 1974.

“The side doors were open and I was out sitting on a chair listening to Richard Nixon resign,” he said.

He became more and more interested in horses and as years went on, he became more and more of a player. He was the leading owner in New York seven times from 2010-2018. Dubb currently owns about 75 horses he said, most with partners.

“My partners are my friends,” he said. “I always tell people that if I never met racing, I would have more money, but I would not have the friends I have. And I would rather have the friends than the money.”

Dubb's main residence is still Long Island–he lives in Brookville, within the town of Oyster Bay in Nassau County on the North Shore. He has made weekly treks to Saratoga to check in on the progress of his baby.

“I have a vision on what I am going to see when I come up,” Dubb said. “I always want more. I always want more progress.”

Asked when he estimated the project will be finished, he smiled.

“It will never be finished because I will always find something else I want to do,” he said. “This will never be done for as long as I'm around because I'll always want to make it better and bigger.”

Amenities at the Adelphi include a game room | Adelphi photo

He is proud to show off the two spacious penthouse suites on the sixth floor that have an upstairs and expansive outdoor patios. Tall windows allow plenty of sunshine to splash onto the high, white walls.

The rest of the breakdown is 21 one-bedrooms, 20 two-bedrooms, 10 studios with den, nine two-bedrooms with den, five three-bedrooms with den, five studious, five one-bedrooms with dens and two three-bedrooms. Some are finished, while others are still under construction.

Dubb makes sure his 150 workers on the job are as dedicated as he is.

As you would expect, it will be a high cost to own. Prices range from the $900,000s to over $4 million for the swanky penthouses.

“You are buying a lifestyle, not just a condominium,” Dubb said. “It's a small percentage of the population that can afford it, but the demand has been phenomenal. You are buying a club and all the amenities.”

A state-of-the-art gym, an in-house spa, game room, meeting rooms, housekeeping services and hotel concierge are just some of the amenities.

Residents will also have an underground heated parking garage at their disposal. And, if you don't want to drive to the track, there is a shuttle that will take you to the races and pick you up when they're done.

The 33 hotel rooms Dubb and Roth added to the Adelphi gives the hotel a total of 65.

Dubb said he wanted to give the Adelphi the same ritzy feel as the acclaimed Plaza Hotel in Manhattan, which also has private residences combined with the five-star hotel.

He had owned a house in Saratoga for years but that will be sold because he will be a resident at the Adelphi. No chance he wasn't going to purchase one.

“I love this project so much,” he said, “the first one I sold was to myself.”

Dubb said that “almost” 50 percent of the condominiums have been sold.

“People are buying these off or floor plans or walking through a building under construction,” Dubb said. “To be 50 percent sold before the building is completed very rarely happens.”

He said the buyers have come from near and far. Some from Florida, others from California.

“We know there is tremendous wealth in the horse industry,” Dubb said. “But there is also tremendous wealth in the Albany, Saratoga and Lake George region. Some of the people who buy these could be people who have three or four homes. I also think there will be plenty of people who will live here year-round.”

Units range from 800 square feet to 2,800 square feet of interior living space.

Dubb has made a living doing exactly what he is doing at the Adelphi. He said he currently has 15 projects Beechwood is currently developing, from the Carolinas to Upstate New York to Long Island.

“I have built projects with 2,000 units, I have built projects with 700, 800 units,” he said. “This is the most important project to me because it's Saratoga. I get to make a difference in Saratoga. And that's important to me.”

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