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Updated: May 1, 2023

Old Orchard Beach motel sells outside the family for first time

motel with lit pool at dusk in aerial shot Courtesy / Paul Sheltra This image depicts the Carolina Resort Motel when it was owned and maintained by the seller.

A motel in Old Orchard Beach has sold outside of the family for the first time since it was built.

Potentia LLC bought the Carolina Resort Motel, at 1 Roussin St. and 73 E Grand Ave., from Carolina Motel LLC and the Estate of Claire Boutot for $3.775 million. 

Nicholas Farrell and Bob Doak of Farrell & Doak/Keller Williams Realty brokered the deal.

The motel is built on property that’s right on the beach and has been owned by the same family for generations. 

courtyard and blue umbrella with picnic tables
Courtesy / Keller Williams Realty
Like most of the hospitality industry, the motel has had trouble finding enough employees in recent years.

“This is the first time it has changed hands to someone outside the family,” said Farrell.

The buyer is a local investor who has experience in hospitality but otherwise prefers to keep his identity confidential, said Farrell.

The property went on the market last summer and drew a lot of interest from a variety of buyers, including investors, hoteliers and developers, Farrell said.

Old Orchard Beach is known for its seven miles of sandy beach, a boardwalk and numerous visitor amenities. 

“The property was in my family for a long time,” said Paul Sheltra, who owned and managed the motel.

sky ocean beach clouds
Courtesy / Keller Williams Realty
The motel has a front-row seat to the beach and ocean.

Sheltra said family ownership of the property dates back to about the late 1800s, when it was owned by his great-great-grandparents.

His grandparents once had apartment buildings there. Sheltra said it was his mother who was interested in building the motel. The apartments and the motel were both named Carolina, after a forebear in the family.

The motel was built in 1976.

“It was nice. It was a family-run business,” he said.

Run seasonally, from May to September, the motel attracted many repeat customers over the years. 

“Generations of customers. It was nice to see people like that,” said Sheltra.

In recent years, it’s been difficult to find employees, which contributed to the decision to sell, he said.

“It was sad to let it go,” he added. “I just figured, ‘Well, I guess it’s time.’”

Sheltra said he was looking for a buyer who would appreciate the property in the same way he and his family did. 

“We were lucky to find someone like that,” he said.

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