HULLS COVE — Swan Agency Real Estate executive Kim Swan recently purchased, and plans to renovate, The Colony Cottages, a property just 2 miles down the road from The Bayview Hotel, which she bought in 2019.
Local residents are buying more properties than ever before, something Swan believes is a positive sign for the town. “All of these locals believe in this industry so much that they want to stay involved in this, which is something that I think is such a cool trend,” she said.
During the height of the pandemic last year, places to stay like The Colony Cottages were popular because so many people wanted individual lodging.
According to Swan, most of cottages were built in the late 1940s/early 1950s and the motel portion was built in the 1960s. To her knowledge, The Colony Cottages has been operating ever since.
“You walk in and you get such a “Mad Men” feeling. I feel like Don Draper is going to be sitting there having a cocktail, so we’re going to really plan up on that and have some fun,” said Swan.
The Colony is not the first property that Swan has purchased and is seeking to renovate in town. Swan’s crew is now in the third phase of upgrading the final 16 bathrooms at The Bayview Hotel on Eden Street. For the remodel, she hopes to keep some of the same mid-century rustic design elements but add a family-friendly upgrade. “It’s got the swimming pool, so we’re gonna try to add a food and beverage angle to it, which will be strictly vegetarian because I don’t eat meat,” she said.
“I don’t like to get too themey, but it’s rustic lux, it’s an elevated rustic.”
Swan explained that the renovations to The Colony Cottages will be very similar to what is being done at The Bayview Hotel. “It’s a huge investment to upgrade these places and redesign them, so we are going to do it in three phases. We’re going to get it open in July and then we’ll be open for August, September, October, then we will close and start the big, big phase [phase two] to open for 2022. And then I guess we will still have one more phase,” said Swan.
Though The Colony Cottages probably won’t have everything upgraded by the first of July, Swan said that her crew is going to work like crazy from April through June to get as much done as possible. She considers herself very lucky that last year’s employees will return since they know the property well.
Swan looks at The Colony Cottages as The Bayview Hotel’s sibling. “There will be some fun ways to connect them as I think a lot of the people buying multiple properties in Bar Harbor are doing,” she said, adding that, similar to The Bayview Hotel, The Colony Cottages will also be pet friendly.