You Can Experience the 'Dirty Dancing' Hotel in Virginia's Blue Ridge Mountains for the Movie's 35th Anniversary
The Catskills may have been the setting for the 1987 classic "Dirty Dancing," but it was the Mountain Lake Lodge in Pembroke, Virginia, that stood in as the movie's real Kellerman's Resort where romance sparked between Jennifer Grey and Patrick Swayze's characters, Baby and Johnny.
Now, the resort is taking center stage again, as the site of the Fox dance competition show, The Real Dirty Dancing, premiering Feb. 1. Hosted by dancer-choreographer Stephen "tWitch" Boss, the four-week event has eight celebrities — Brie Bella, Corbin Bleu, Tyler Cameron, Cat Cora, Howie Dorough, Antonio Gates, Anjelah Johnson-Reyes, and Loni Love — recreating the film's most memorable dance scenes, as they compete to become the winning "Baby" and "Johnny."
To celebrate Mountain Lake Lodge's newfound television fame, the property is inviting fans with a series of themed "Dirty Dancing" weekends, as well as an offering that nods to the movie, called the Kellerman's Film Package.
The weekends will be packed with a full itinerary of film-themed events, including scavenger hunts, trivia, group dance lessons, and more. The programming is scheduled this year for April 29 to May 1, June 24 to 26, July 29 to 31, Aug. 26 to 28, Sept. 16 to 18, and Oct. 28 to 30.
For those looking for more flexibility, the two-night Kellerman's Film Package is offered throughout 2022 and also geared toward the film fans, with a welcome cocktail in a souvenir Kellerman's glass, a gift bag with a Kellerman's beach towel, a scavenger hunt, a movie screening, and a $200 dining credit. Additionally, for the movie's 35th anniversary from March 4 to 6, the resort will host Kellerman's Paint & Sip Weekend, with the free activity for those who book the film package.
"We are elated for a national audience to discover that Mountain Lake Lodge is a real destination steeped in history and offers today's guests a special experience, whether they are 'Dirty Dancing' aficionados, hikers, or mountain bikers, or just want to relax and get away," Mountain Lake Lodge's president and CEO, Heidi Stone, said in a statement. Virginia Tourism Corporation's president and CEO, Rita McClenny, added, "Viewers will be delighted to see familiar scenes and backdrops at this iconic Virginia property, while they watch their favorite stars relive some of the most memorable moments from the film."
Among the resort's landmarks used in the Fox series are the central gathering place with the stone hearth, the Harvest Restaurant and Patio where Johnny and Baby first set eyes on one another, the gazebo for salsa lessons, and Baby's cabin. The Blue Ridge Mountains lodge, which is set on a 2,600-acre nature preserve and bird sanctuary, has a history that stretches back before the movie, with the first property being built in 1851.
Virginia Film Office director Andy Edmunds said, "'Dirty Dancing' is such an important part of Virginia's cinematic history, and we can't wait for folks to rediscover the timeless allure that Virginia and Mountain Lake Lodge hold with The Real Dirty Dancing."