Dolly Parton speaks during a news conference to annouce plans to expand her Dollywood properties in Pigeon Forge, Tenn.
Scripps Howard News Service
PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. -- Dolly Parton announced Wednesday a commitment to invest $300 million over the next 10 years in her hometown, where she plans to expand her Dollywood properties.
The capital investments include a 300-room resort on 100 acres adjacent to her namesake parks and a dual-launch coaster currently under construction in Dollywood.
Ms. Parton, a native of Sevier County in East Tennessee, said she has always been a big dreamer who hoped to do more for her home in the Smoky Mountains. The 10-year investment is projected to create 2,500 jobs and generate an additional $150 million annually to the local economy.
Although her company entered the lodging business three years ago with Dollywood Cabins, two miles from the parks, Ms. Parton has long said she would like to have her own resort.
The DreamMore Resort, slated to open in summer 2015, will have a variety of accommodations, including a 2,200-square-foot Dolly's Suite Dreams celebrity suite.
There will be an indoor-outdoor pool complex, a spa and a full-service farmhouse-style restaurant that features a wraparound veranda with views of the pool and mountains.
An amphitheater is planned as well as outdoor areas complete with fire pits, swings and hammocks.