Paul Coulombe signs purchase and sale agreement for Cap’n Fish’s Waterfront Inn

Posted:  Friday, May 18, 2018 - 1:45pm

On Thursday, May 17, real estate developer and owner of Boothbay Harbor County Club and Boothbay Harbor Oceanside Golf Resort Paul Coulombe revealed he has signed a purchase and sale agreement for Cap’n Fish’s Waterfront Inn, owned by John and Diane Fish, on Atlantic Avenue, on the east side of Boothbay Harbor.

Both parties confirmed the closing is scheduled for Nov. 1.  John Fish said he will continue to run the inn as always this summer, with no changes.

Coulombe said negotiations have been ongoing for the past two and a half months. His plan, pending closing, is for the property to continue to be used as a hotel.

“I’ve been talking to John Fish and his wife for over two years, and I did make an offer over a year and a half ago, then called it off due to nonconforming issues. I couldn’t have done the renovations that I wanted to.”

The Fishes took the property off the market after that offer was withdrawn, and according to Coulombe it was never put back on. Then a few months ago Fish contacted Coulombe telling him it was going back on the market and he wanted to give him first refusal.

Coulombe said any work on prospective projects on the east side will not be happening anytime soon, due to possible ordinance changes that are still being worked out. It will probably be at least 2020 before Coulombe can start the process toward any projects.

“We have to wait to see exactly what the selectmen put up for a warrant, and then the people have to vote on it. I will have to know what my parameters are before I can do anything. I can’t even design anything until I know what I can and cannot do.”

Even after a warrant is agreed upon, it will be a long process, he said. “So it’s important to get the warrant out, and get the people to vote on it so I can start the process of design and contracting. Then there will be over a year’s worth of the process of permitting. And then there will be a year or two of construction.

“Nothing happens overnight.”

In other developments, Coulombe has purchased and is in the process of renovating four buildings to become high end rentals, on Townsend Avenue, Commercial Street, and on the corner of Oak and Howard streets.

Coulombe said he’s feeling upbeat about his hopes for the east side development. “I’m feeling optimistic and positive that once the select board does issue a warrant, that the people will vote in favor of it, because it will enable renovating and rebuilding the east side, which is sorely needed.”

Patty Minerich and her husband Tom own a bed and breakfast and two other properties on Union Street. She said she’s looking forward to the possibility of change on the east side. “Taking the property off the market shines the light on the facts, diffuses the emotional rhetoric and clears the way for the planning board to move the east side zoning changes forward.”