The Castle Professional Building in Winthrop will be ready for office tenants in April, owner and developer Liam Doyle said this week.
Many valley residents will recall the building at the top of the Bridge Street hill, where it intersects with Castle Avenue, as the longtime site of the Red Hen Trading Company, a popular second-hand store that closed in 2017. Farther back in history, longtime residents may remember that it was the home of the Lester family, owners of the White Buck Trading Company.
Neither previous incarnation is much in evidence now, as the building has been completely renovated into five office spaces.
The offices are of various sizes, each including its own heating and air conditioning systems, high-speed internet through a Methownet fiber optic connection, carpeting, LED overhead lights, separate entrances for privacy, and extra-wide doors for ease of access. Four of the offices share a bathroom with shower, and a kitchen area with a refrigerator, microwave oven, and eating counter. One of those offices has an outdoor deck that overlooks downtown Winthrop.
The fifth office, the largest, has its own bath with shower, kitchen area, and a second entrance. There is also a large, studio-style apartment in the basement that is being renovated and will soon be ready to lease, Doyle said.
Doyle, who is acting as general contractor and using local subcontractors, said he started the renovation about a year ago. “I was a frequenter of the Red Hen,” he said. “I was always enamored of the location.”
Doyle said the timing was good, as he and his former partners in ownership of the Copper Glance restaurant in Winthrop were in the process of selling that business. “I was luckily positioned to jump on it, and it happened pretty quickly,” he said of the Red Hen building. “I saw it as a good investment. I had heard people talking about the need for office space, especially for some people who are now working at home and don’t want the distractions.”
Earlier, Doyle had talked with a Winthrop business about redeveloping the Red Hen building as retail commercial space, but that didn’t work out, he said.
Doyle said the new office building complements the recently opened Drop Zone Cowork space on Riverside Avenue, which offers drop-in working spaces and super-fast internet connections. Doyle took note of that. “We wanted to be sure that people are getting really fast internet speeds,” Doyle said.
Doyle is also the sales and marketing manager for Lost River Winery, where he has worked since 2004. “The winery is my day job,” he said.
Doyle will host an open house for the Castle Professional Building on March 17 from 11 a.m.-4 p.m.