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Historical Renovations Underway at 26-28 Washington



Exterior Work Begins Next Week • Breakfast Service at Gin Mill Starts July 1

By Jennie Acklin

Ed and Maribeth Rick, owners of Ellicottville’s iconic Gin Mill, purchased the building at the corner of Washington and Monroe Street in January. Their plans for the building included renovation of the upstairs apartments and a complete remodel of the restaurant currently occupied by DJ’s.

“We originally thought we

could just fix up the apartments with some cosmetic work,” said Maribeth. “But it’s turned out to be so much more extensive than originally planned.”

For the past five months, the Rick’s have been overseeing a complete gutting of the upstairs floor plan, all the way down to the brick walls. New floors, ceilings, walls, wiring and plumbing has been the project of a crew of eight workers from Burke Contracting.

When completed later this summer, there will be 5 vacation rental apartments upstairs. Three apartments will be seasonal rentals and the other two will be available for nightly bookings. Rental details are still to be worked out, with the Rick’s focus on design details taking shape now that the “bones” of construction are nearing completion.

“Next Wednesday – June 10 – is when the front porch will be torn down, and replaced with a new structure that will include a roof over the deck, as original photos indicate. Historical accuracy is important to our project,” said Ed Rick.

Scaffolding will cover the front of the building and DJ’s and A Touch of Ellicottville may be closed for a few days. The Ricks were quick to apologize for any inconveniences caused by the construction, but assured everyone that restoring the building will be worth it.

“Our goal is to have all the brickwork and the porch rebuild finished before Summer Music Fest [July 3-5],” Ed said.

Preserve A Stone Masonry of Attica, NY, has been hired to oversee the exterior restoration. The company’s experience with historical buildings convinced the Ricks that they were the ones to handle the project.

According to owner James Kohl, “We work on a lot of historical buildings, and a lot more work goes into those projects than new construction. Different mortar and building materials are used for historical renovation. The Rick’s building is a nice project, restoring it to the original style. Ed doesn’t take any shortcuts, which makes the project unique.”

Breakfast Service to Begin at the Gin Mill July 1

The entire staff of DJ’s Restaurant has been hired by the Ricks, and will begin serving breakfast out of the Gin Mill on July 1. “Gin Mill style” breakfast will be served seven days a week from 6 a.m. Monday – Saturday and 7 a.m. on Sundays.

“We didn’t want to see anyone lose their job during the construction process,” said Maribeth. “So they’ll all be working for us!”

Renovation of DJ’s will begin in the spring of 2016. The Ricks plan to create a warm and inviting interior that will capture the historical authenticity of the building. Tin ceilings, exposed brick, wood accents, and a friendly, welcoming staff will be its signature style.

“We plan to be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner at the new restaurant, offering healthier food choices, nicer wines with a small bar and an extensive takeout menu,” said Maribeth.

“The Gin Mill will not be moving into the new building,” she said. “This will be a new restaurant with a completely different style and menu.”

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