A bittersweet end as the Chanhassen Inn prepares to close its doors for good

For 36 years, The Chanhassen Inn has boasted the warmest welcome in the Twin Cities--in fact, there isn't even a lock on the front door. 

Owners and siblings Jean and Larry Zamor say they strive to run the little Bed and Breakfast the old-fashioned way, with reliable employees and a loyal customer base. The property has been in their family since 1979, when the pair's father bought the land and put Jean in charge.

"I have a picture of when we first opened in March and it was snowing, and we're just this little building," Jean said. "[My father] just thought with the dinner theater just down the road so close it would just be natural to have a hotel." 

Little did they know that soon after opening, Prince would move in across the street and subsequently become one of the most well-known names in music .

"We have quite a history with Prince almost from the beginning," Larry said, adding that the star himself would stop in from time to time.

"He was very pleasant," Jean said. "He'd always say hello. He didn't necessarily stop and chat, but he always said hello."

Then, in 2016 when Prince died the Chanhassen Inn became part of his local legacy, serving as an unassuming retreat for stars passing through--including celebrities like Bill Murray and others with Twin Cities ties.

Like all good things, however, the little Inn's run is coming to an end. The doors will be locked for the first time later this week and the property will make room for a cafe, a bittersweet end that Jean and Larry liken to a goodbye with a beloved family member.

They're just happy, though, that they can say that goodbye on their own terms.

"These last few years have been the best the business has had," Larry said. 

"It has been absolutely a wonderful experience," Jean added.