Concourse Restaurant & Lounge History
Keeping with tradition, Concourse Restaurant & Lounge is a tribute to the roots of the original Osthoff Hotel. The hotel was operated for over 60 years, seeing many unique changes over time. The vision for Concourse Restaurant & Lounge will draw from the deep and colorful history. Please enjoy the Osthoff story.
In 1886, Otto Osthoff purchased the famed Carver property on Elkhart Lake, opening Hotel Muesterland. Hotel Muesterland contained rooms for 120 guests, a parlor, dining room and kitchen, and a dance hall on the top level. During the years Otto Osthoff operated the resort, he constructed a lakefront pavilion, guest cottages, created a tree lined walkway to the depot, and built a new family residence, “Villa Pauline”. In 1887, Hotel Muesterland was renamed Osthoff Hotel by popular demand.
Otto and his wife Pauline (Bastain) operated the resort until 1911. At this time, their daughter and son-in-law Otto and Paula Just took over management. During the time management was changing hands, Carl Bastain, a relative of Paulina, acquired an adjoining summer home.
Paula and Otto Just split the responsibilities of running the resort. Paula supervised food operations while Otto oversaw the front office and dining room service. Paula had the liberty of hiring Chef Trosien, who would spend 41 years with the resort, as Head Chef. In 1926, when Otto Just died, Paula, with the help of their three children, continued to manage the resort. In the ‘30s and ’40s, their daughter Kathleen and her husband Floyd Dixon took over management of the hotel, with help from her brother, Paul Just.
Just as Otto Osthoff had grown the resort, the Dixon’s and Paul Just continued to expand the resort as well. In the 1930’s, the Bastain House, on the corner of Lake and East Street, was added to the property. In June of 1940, the Bastain House was converted into the Fun Spot Club, a casino with a beautiful art deco bar and dining room. The Fun Spot Club had nightly music and entertainment.
With gambling outlawed and road course racing starting in the village in the 1950’s, the Dixon’s saw a need to transform the Fun Spot Club. It was rebranded to the Concourse Cocktail Lounge and Dining Room. The Concourse was advertised as having the best vantage point to see all of the action in air-conditioned comfort. The Concourse continued to operate until the sale of the resort to Sulie and Pearl Harand in 1955.
That brings us to today. We invite you to help us expand on this wonderful history and join us at Concourse Restaurant & Lounge!