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Ocean Properties, Ltd. Hotels and Resorts Purchases BALSAMS Grand Resort
in Dixville Notch, New Hampshire from Tillotson Corporation

Portsmouth NH (March 10, 2011) ­ Tillotson Corporation today approved an agreement to sell the BALSAMS Grand Resort with all its assets and approximately 7,700 acres of land to Ocean Properties, Ltd. Hotels and Resorts of Portsmouth, NH, dba Balville LLC. Ocean Properties own and operate more than 100 hotels across North America.. The sale is expected to be completed before the hotel opens for the summer season.

This agreement comes after an exhaustive search for a new owner for the historic hotel. A set of criteria was established by the Tillotson Corporation directors to find the right buyer. Those criteria were:
  1. To ensure that the BALSAMS continues to be an engine of economic benefit to the North Country as it has been for generations, employing residents of the North Country to the extent possible.
  2. To find a buyer who has both the economic and managerial resources to maintain and grow he reputation of the BALSAMS as a premier destination resort.
  3. To be certain that the new owner would have the same commitment to the environment of the North Country that the Tillotsons demonstrated in their many years of stewardship.
More than 90 potential bidders looked at the opportunity to purchase the property, and many submitted bids. Those bids were all seriously considered and measured against the Corporation's criteria. In the end, Ocean Properties, a company that has an impressive record in the preservation and management of Wentworth By the Sea Hotel & Spa on New Hampshire¹s seacoast (which OPL purchased, renovated and reopened in 2003), emerged as the most qualified bidder.

"Ocean Properties brings an impressive track record, with a portfolio of hotels, commitment to New Hampshire, and management team to the table. They have the same passion for the BALSAMS that the Tillotsons had," said Tom Deans of North Conway, Managing Trustee of the Neil Tillotson Trust.

Neil Tillotson's estate plan established a Trust giving most of his personal assets, including the stock of Tillotson Corporation, to charity. The Trustees of his Trust were given the authority to decide how best to turn Mr. Tillotson's generosity and legacy into philanthropic action. The Trustees of the Neil Tillotson Trust have been engaged in an extended and thoughtful process to administer the Trust's assets for charitable purposes with the philosophy and principles of Mr. Tillotson in mind, "Be humble, be creative and be kind." Significant grants have already been made through the Neil and Louise Tillotson Fund at the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation and to a number of other charities in areas where Mr. Tillotson had interests.

The BALSAMS Grand Resort Hotel, located in Dixville Notch has operated for more than 150 years. Tillotson Corporation has made significant improvements to continue the Resort's heritage of excellence and the Trustees are committed to seeing the heritage of The BALSAMS continue.

"Like the Fund the purchase of The BALSAMS by Ocean Properties Ltd carries on the legacy of supporting local community efforts as well as broad-based initiatives which link the North Country to the wider region and the global economy," said Jeff McIver, President and General Manager of The BALSAMS.

"Ocean Properties is proud to be chosen to protect and preserve The BALSAMS Grand Resort and its surrounding environment while stewarding its growth to sustain the resort's jobs and economic impact on the North Country," said Tom Varley, Ocean Properties Senior Vice President. "We are committed to burnishing The BALSAMS reputation as an international treasure whose rich history is intertwined with the prosperity of the Great North Woods and the great political tradition of the nation."

Ocean Properties has demonstrated success in acquiring, renovating and repositioning historic hotels. The company purchased Wentworth By the Sea Hotel in 1997 after the hotel had been placed on the National Trust list of "Most Endangered Sites." After a $30 million restoration, Wentworth received the Trust¹s Preservation Success Story and President's Award and also was named Marriott's full-service Hotel of the Year (2007) for its operating and guest satisfaction success. Ocean manages Wentworth as a Marriott franchise to increase group business during the off-season. Wentworth is the only hotel in New Hampshire to make both the Travel + Leisure and Conde Nast Traveler lists of "Best hotels in the world" (January 2011). No other New Hampshire hotel is on either list, although The BALSAMS once achieved a perfect score in the Conde Nast Traveler reader survey of hotel dining capabilities.

Ocean Properties purchased The Sagamore Resort on Lake George NY in September 2008, investing in room upgrades, amenities improvements and operating efficiencies to return that resort to optimal performance. The company also restored the historic Bar Harbor Club and significantly upgraded the adjacent Harborside Hotel & Marina in Bar Harbor, Maine. Ocean Properties also owns and operates Sunset Key Resort in Key West FL (also on the ³best hotels in the world² lists) and The Latham Hotel, a historic downtown property in Philadelphia, which is now undergoing renovation.

The BALSAMS Grand Resort Hotel has operated continuously since the opening of the Dix House, just after the Civil War. The original inn was named for the town's first landowner, Colonel Timothy Dix, a hero of the American Revolution, who died in the War of 1812. In 1895, a wealthy Philadelphia industrialist, Henry S. Hale, purchased the Dix House and renamed it The BALSAMS. Hale steadily expanded and enhanced the facilities. By 1918 he had completed the Hampshire House, an elegant addition that doubled the overnight capacity of the resort to 400 guests, the current capacity. The BALSAMS is an all-inclusive resort with its own 16-trail alpine ski area, two golf courses, a heated outdoor pool, swimming in its own Lake Gloriette, a Mountain Bike and Nature Center accessing miles of hiking trails, and one of the most breathtaking settings in the world. 
Tom Deans
President, Tillotson Corporation

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Also See: Ocean Properties, Ltd. Acquires and Plans to Restore The Ledgelawn Inn in Bar Harbor, Maine / August 2010

Jeffrey McIver Appointed General Manager at The BALSAMS Grand Resort Hotel, New Hampshire / June 2009

General Manager Uwe Roggenthien Leading The BALSAMS Grand Resort Hotel, Dixville Notch, New Hampshire Through an Extensive Restoration / April 2008

Tillotson Corp. Names Delaware North Companies to Manage The BALSAMS Grand Resort Hotel; Steve Barba and Phil Learned Retire as Managing Partners / March 2005
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