Brew pub, spa moving into Lincoln Building

By CRAIG FOX
CFOX@WDT.NET

Two more businesses, a brew pub and a spa, are moving into the soon-to-be-renovated Lincoln Building, leaving just one empty storefront.

The Marcy Spa and Boots Brewing Co. are expected to open for business this spring in the Public Square landmark.

In December, the owners of the building received a $950,000 state grant to renovate the five storefronts and complete some other improvements to the building, at 85-89 Public Square.

City firefighter Daniel E. Daugherty plans to occupy a storefront closest to the Crystal Restaurant that will house a brew pub and tap room.

Beer will be made in the basement on the J.B. Wise parking lot side of the building. The business will be set up like a wine tasting room with an upstairs tap room.

“It’s something I’ve been kicking around for a few years,” Mr. Daugherty said. “Plans have a taken a little longer.”

Making about 150 barrels a year, Boots will specialize in an India pale ale, stout and English pale ale that are produced year-round, while changing to seasonal beers every three months.

His wife, Kelly, and sister, Christin Filippelli, are also involved in the business.

Sixteen years ago, the Marcy Spa became the first tenant in the then newly renovated Marcy Building. Fast forward: the full service spa and salon soon will move a block down the street and become the Lincoln Building’s anchor.

After the move, Laurel A. Blackmore will take over the business from her father, Donald J. Foote, who is retiring. Ms. Blackmore’s sister, Rachel O’Brien, will be the manager.

The spa owners have been looking for a new location for the past two years, and figured that the business would get more exposure along Public Square.

“We jumped at it,” Ms. Blackmore said. “It’s the best fit.”

The yoga studio and brew pub should complement her business, Ms. Blackmore said.

The Marcy Spa will lease out about 2,400 square feet of space, taking a full storefront and half the back of another.

The spa offers laser hair removal, skin treatments, full body wax for men and women and chemical peels.

Donald W. Rutherford, CEO of the Watertown Local Development Corp., also known as the Watertown Trust, said it’s a good fit for both the business and the building. The Marcy Spa is a longtime respected downtown business with a proven track record, he said.

The Watertown Trust’s revolving loan fund committee discussed the move Wednesday. The spa has requested a loan to help the move. The brew pub owners plan to ask for a rent subsidy from the Watertown Trust.

The trust has set aside $60,000 for the rental subsidy program designed to help attract five businesses into Public Square. The Trust will pay a 50 percent lease subsidy for eligible businesses that agree to stay in a storefront or commercial space for three years.

Lincoln Building owner Brian H. Murray, owner of Washington Street Properties, said he’s been anxious to make an announcement about the businesses moving into the landmark.

An announcement about the remaining unfilled storefront should occur within a couple of weeks, he said.

In 2012, the developers purchased the building from a Long Island corporation for $500,000.

Since then, they spent about $1.3 million on restoring the building’s facade but needed the state funding to move the project forward. Only 10 percent of the five-story building is now habitable.