From The Press, 1/29-2/4/2001
Riley's carries on long tradition of food service at former Egypt Hotel
Smack dab in the center of Egypt, a village whose roots have a deep Pennsylvania Dutch heritage, sits a
hotel with an Irish twist, Rileys Restaurant & Pub.
Bert Charlie took over the reins of the former Egypt Hotel last October.
He said Riley's isn't reflective of his roots, but is the name of the family's dog.
The hotel opened for business with a grand opening on Dec. 18.
"I used to come eat in this place", Charlie said as he looked around the renovated barroom & dining
rooms. Charlie worked as a clerk at the Lehigh Valley Post Office, 1987 until
last year. He said he heard the hotel was up for sale and decided to change careers.
After purchasing the hotel with his wife, Karen, the Charlies immediately embarked on the task of renovating
the landmark building.
The Egypt Hotel was built in 1790 by Jacob Steckel. It served
as a store, tavern, and post office and was the village's centerpiece. Owners
John & Mary Groller, during prohibition, opened a dance hall and ice cream parlor.
The Grollers owned the hotel from 1923 to 1977 when Earl and Judy Kreglow bought the landmark hotel. Over two centuries, the hotel has remained as Egypt was transformed from a village of clapboard residences,
dirt streets and hitching posts to one of trolleys, a traffic light and blacktop street.
"We wanted to bring back the old hotel look", Charlie said. Jason
Easterly is a part owner and bar manager. Spending $100,000 in remodeling, the
work Charlie is most proud of is restoring the tin ceiling with a copper color and flora designs.
Charlie said townspeople and patrons from a wide area come to dine, including former owner Earl Kreglow,
who stops in nearly every day.