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New coffeehouse revives old building on Route 3



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Ellen Giguere sets up the espresso machine for the new Meredith Bay Coffee House. Erin Plummer. (click for larger version)
September 08, 2010
MEREDITH — A new place for coffee and relaxing is opening soon, in an old building being given a new life.

Travelers along Route 3 have noticed a new façade and new sign on a formerly abandoned building for Meredith Bay Coffee House. The nearly 70-year-old building now has a new occupant: a soon-to-be-open coffeehouse.

The coffeehouse is the project of owners Ellen and Mike Giguere of Laconia. Ellen Giguere used to own Laconia Village Bakery in downtown Laconia before selling it almost three years ago.

Since May, Ellen and her husband Mike, a carpenter, have been working on the building and are nearing completion.

Giguere described the coffee house as "a comfortable place with good coffee and tasty food."

Giguere said the building was built in the 1930s. The last occupant was an interior decorating business, but the building has sat unoccupied for a few years.

"It was really just a shell that we bought," Ellen Giguere.

She said the building needed much work, including a new well system and extensive plumbing and heating. The foundation was good and the building itself was structurally sound.

Ellen Giguere said her husband has done most of the physical work on the building, and they started around May. Preliminary work revealed a set of hardwood floors, which were uncovered and will be the floor's surface.

Ellen Giguere said many people have stopped and inquired about what is going on.

"A lot of people are so happy that someone's redoing the building and taking care of it," Giguere said.

One person even stopped by because of the chestnut trees around the property, saying he was a member of the American Chestnut Society.

Meredith Bay Coffee House will feature a wide array of coffees, lattes, espressos, and other drinks featuring Mad River Coffee. It will also have breakfast and lunch items as well as pastries, all to be baked in the coffee house. The coffee house will also have WiFi. Giguere said the business will be open all year round.

An open house with entertainment is in the works.

The business is currently waiting to receive its certificate of occupancy permit. Giguere said that if all goes well, the coffee house should be open around Sept. 14.

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