For Sale By Owner $625,000
The Inn is 4500 SQFT, Event Center is 5560 SQFT The total space more than 13000 SQFT
A 3.7 acre corner lot. Lot has 560 ft on RT 126 and 310 feet on Hallowell/Litchfield Road
The Bachelder's INN
Built in 1808, now celebrates its 200th year. This Brick and Hemlock post and beam federal mansion has been greeting travelers for 2 centuries. Original one of many stage coach stops for travelers from Boston, Portland, Augusta Lewiston, Auburn Waterville and Bangor the Bachelder's Inn is central to Maine travelers. Bachelder's Corner is recognized by Delorme and Yahoo and MapQuest as a special feature.
Features 6 lovely room all with full baths, 5 have working fireplaces.
The Moses Eaton room has been written up several times (> Moses Eaton Room)
for its hand stenciled wall from 1824
(each room is featured in this web site)
Inn Dining room (great for 10-20 person party)
Parlor with fireplace
Great Hall and Entrance with classic stair case
Inn Kitchen is 40X21 with hearth for wood or pellet stove
Veranda (17x24) and 34X19 in-ground swimming pool
additional huge room over Kitchen 40x21
Fully fire sprinkled building, all new Electrical, New Plumbing
and new metal shingled roof that looks like slate
Private well on aquifer, absolute great water and plenty of it
New (2007) Dual York 150,000 Btu boilers with two hot water coils (6 zones)
(3 zones Main Inn and 3 Zones Apartment, Hall and restaurant Kitchen)
Storage room off Kitchen with Ice machine and huge True double door freezer, 1/2 bath off kitchen
(3 zones INN and 3 Zones Apartment, restaurant Kitchen)
Inn Keepers Apartment (1400 sqft) with separate living room ,
bedroom (big enough for king size bed) with bath
Separate Kitchen and two huge closets
The Event Center and Restaurant
We started out buying this place for the Restaurant section.
There are 5600 sqft (Not including storage spaces )
The main floor 45x42 has a great entrance, Full wet bar ,ice sink, cooler and seating for 65. There is also an outdoor deck that can seat 24, M/F Bath with two toilets each
Upstairs there is a Banquet area with dance floor, stage area, wait station w sinks and seating for 125
The kitchen is huge 32x45 with 6 and 10 burner Gas stove 3 ovens, gas char broiler, gas fryolator, hood with fire suppression system and full water sprinkler system
True 2 door constant temp cooler 2) two door coolers and 1) 3 door cooler.
Lots of counter space. and plate and pan storage
The dish room is also huge 16x22 with 3 bay sink, lots of counter space and plenty of rack space for dishes. The main feature is the low temp dish water with 2.5 gal /cycle Boiler can easily supply water for this baby.
There is also a small intimate pub with full wet bar and bathroom
Restaurant has New Renia Gas Heater and Sanyo A/C
400 Amp electrical, separate septic for sanitary sewer and Event Kitchen Sewer (separate from Inn)
Full Fire sprinkler system and security system
Main Parking lot is able for 40 cars
Out behind the Event center are 2 acres of landscaped space with 1 acre pond.
Wedding Arbor and two plateau for outdoor event tents and lawn parking for and additional 40 cars
A little History
In 2000, I was a Process Control Engineer and IT/Computer supervisor for a fortune 500 company named International Paper in Jay Maine (30 miles from the INN). I have traveled extensively and have dined in just about every state and province in North America. I have a love for good wine and great food. My partner Tim Vigue is an Executive Chef for over 25 years. He and I decided to look for a restaurant in the area to explore fine dining. Jeff Graham a real estate and Marketing person from Florida and the three of us found the Inn in 2000. Its was an almost ready restaurant space (The Banquet area was added later), but we thought is was a great spot.
So in July 2000, I was able to purchase the property as my home. Tim was the driving force for the Kitchen and restaurant, but he also took great zeal in decorating the Inn as well as a green thumb for the gardens. Clean up was extensive ,since the place had been idle for almost 6 years. and in one short month Tim was able to clean and decorate the Inn with many of the antiques and furniture from both our grandmothers and family homes, along with several special purchases we made and the many antique places in the area. Almost immediately, with the help of the internet, Jeff and I on the computer, we were getting calls for rooms. We booked rooms for August and through to November.
Because it takes about 90 days to get a liquor license in Maine, we were able take a little more time with the restaurant and again, Tim saw the potential for the upstairs space in the restaurant. The Restaurant was the livery stables back when it was a stagecoach stop. The Snow's (yes Olympia's Snow our senator's in laws) had lived here and used this area as a emporium. A fellow named Dirk Kijer has converted the main floor into a restaurant space and had added the kitchen, but the upstairs was just a big open area with about 200 years of junk in it. Tim dived into cleaning it and with some sheetrock, insulation and carpeting. The Banquet area began to take shape.
With Tim's guidance from the Kitchen, Jeff helping with the front and doing word of mouth marketing and me doing accounting and finances we launched the Wee Otter Restaurant on September 6th 2000.The Wee Otter restaurant was opened, the Inn had bookings and slowly but surely people started to come through the doors. We didn't know how quickly we would go from 0 to 60 / night, but by November we were very busy and the holiday rush was upon us.
We made it though 2000 and 2001 looked very bright. Booking for the Inn were strong and even the lull after Xmas was short and we were going from Holiday event to Holiday event in great strides. Summers In Litchfield proved to be very good. There is a huge lake crowd of about 20000 and the Inn had many booking from friend on the lake visiting along with weddings and Golf (6 in a 20 mile range). Things looked very good.
Unfortunately in September thing changed. We just finished a great labor Day weekend with a wedding and full Inn. Booking for Inn for the fall looked strong and area businesses were calling already for banquet dates for company parties. Then 911.
Like most people around the country, we and our customers were in shock. People called to cancel and local traffic slowed to a halt. It wasn't just us, it was everywhere. Jeff my front manager decided that he wanted to move back to his family in New York, so I tried to take over as front of the restaurant, but I have a very busy job with IP and was not able to give it my full attention nor any daytime attention. Now my company is in the throws of a corporate divestiture and I have even less time to devote to this business.
After 2001 and the beginning of the Iraq war, we did get a lot of requests for weddings. Weddings are great. You know how many are coming, they pay in advance and then they drink. It was also very easy for me, being an engineer to plan these events. So for 2003 through 2005 I started to book several weddings and retirement parties and other events and it looked as though these were becoming a main stay for the restaurant. Tim was a wizard at coordinating the kitchen. Most were on Saturday, so I could be there and direct and bartend. The downside, I later found out, was two fold. first in order to really capture this business you need to be available during the day. Second it really hurts your weekend restaurant crowd.
We did have over 60 wedding here. This is such a great place for Weddings, Anniversaries', retirement parties, artisan festivals, retreats and business meetings. We are close to three metro areas, yet out of the way so they are very private and intimate. The inn lends itself to a family reunions, the out of town side of a wedding party or the bride's friends and maids of honor or small core groups like the company lead team or board meetings. There is lots of potential, if you have the time. Again its the daytime attention that brings in the most revenue. Also networking through the Chamber or Better Business groups and Innkeepers associations all need daytime efforts which I could not do.
Why am I selling?
In conclusion, I bought this place to fulfill a dream of running a fine dining restaurant. I found that Innkeeping was one of the most satisfying addition to my life. I can only say how wonderful the Inn Traveling customers have been. Doing weddings and events was also a great reward. If you have the time. Unfortunately my main career and first passion is still in the computer and engineering field. I have talk to many successful Innkeepers and they often have a side job or passion, but to be truly successful they need great flexibility in the other job to make this work. My job does not offer that and I knew that from the beginning.
A great partnership with a spouse or partner who can carry the majority of duties oneself, works very well. If you are the type of team where one can devout 100% of his or her time to this side and the other can devout the extra 25-30% that is always needed, then this is the place for you. I highly recommend this place and would be willing to work with you to introduce you to the banks that have made this work for me and kept us out of trouble even in these troubled times. It will take people with a vision. There is certainly opportunity for a group effort here.
Some of the ideas for this place are:
Event Center, Artisan groups, education center, Assisted Living, Group Home, Leased Restaurant ,Office space
I would be glad to talk with most people who are thinking about this career change. I would be glad to talk about numbers, Goals, pit falls and successes. I have not gone bankrupt or failed to make mortgage payment. I am not a motivated seller, because I can afford this place as a home. A very large home (13000 sqft), but nevertheless a very nice home. I also haven't had to buy a cocktail in 8 years, I have been able to channel a lot of travel expenses, business expenses through the business. There are still several very good tax incentives to this business and the future looks even better. Maine has some aggressive aspect in the Green and social services areas which are still very attractive.
This is still an big investment for a personal team or group. If you don't have access to 20% down and at least another $80 - $100K then this is not for you. Interest rates are great and don't let anyone tell you the banks are not lending. They are if you are putting serious money down and a serious plan on the table. If you can't sell the banks you are probably not going to sell the public. It is helpful to have a some experience in the endeavor you are planning to embark upon. If your team has real estate or hospitality experience or nursing or group home management then this goes a great way to convincing the finance groups of your sincerity. If you are lacking in some part, talk to someone who has a strong background and see if they will come onboard for guidance and maybe a piece of the pie. There are many ways to attack this endeavor, think outside the box and known risk or shared risk is 10 time better than unknown risk
The Bachelder's Inn is a classic Country inn
If you have ever though you would like to own and operate an inn