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December 13, 2021

Turreted ‘castle by the sea’ inn sells for $2.4M in Georgetown

aerial of inn and water Courtesy / Terry Taylor The 13-room waterfront Grey Havens Inn, in Georgetown, is distinguished by two turrets and is often used as a navigational aid.

After careers in software product management and public media strategy, Georgetown residents Ali and Carlos Barrionuevo, and two long-time friends who are silent partners, bought an inn dating back more than a century in their coastal Sagadahoc County community.

The partners bought the 13-room waterfront Grey Havens Inn, located at 96 Seguinland Road, from D&E Ventures LLC for $2.4 million. 

Dana Moos and Kim Swan of Swan Agency Real Estate represented the sellers in the deal.

The shingle style hotel was built in 1904 and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. It is referred to as a “castle-by-the-sea” due to its two tall round turrets and is often used as a navigational aid by local boaters, according to the inn’s website.

Other features include a wrap-around covered porch, deep water dock and two deep moorings, and a massive stone fireplace in the living room. Most rooms have full or partial ocean views.

The inn has been the subject of catalog photo shoots, book and magazine covers, articles and calendars, and has served as a venue for numerous weddings. 

“We are looking forward to a great 2022, we're looking to expand programming offerings and we are off to a good start,” said Ali Barrionuevo. “We've booked two arts retreats and we hope to entertain corporate retreats as well.”

Maryland transplants

The Barrionuevos moved from Takoma Park, Md., to Georgetown in 2015. 

Ali came from a career in the software industry. Carlos was director of business development for Washington, D.C.-based National Public Radio and currently works with the Public Media Co., providing strategic consulting services to consult with public media organizations across the country.

2 people posing
Courtesy / Barrionuevo Family
Ali and Carlos Barrionuevo.

They had a vision of moving to Maine and finding a business to run. They knew that Ali would continue to commute nationwide for her work in the software industry, so they looked for a place to settle that would be close to Portland’s transportation options. 

They also started looking at available commercial properties. 

They found Robinhood Free Meetinghouse, a community center in Georgetown dating back to 1856 and listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The building had been a regionally famous restaurant, but had been closed for a number of years. 

“We decided Georgetown was the right place for us to build our lives and business,” said Ali.


They bought Robinhood and in 2016 reopened it as a music, wedding and event venue, and seasonal restaurant.

“It was kismet,” said Carlos. “Robinhood Free Meetinghouse fulfilled all the things we wanted to do with events and music and food.”

Then they learned that the Grey Haven’s owners, Eve and Dick Roesler, were planning to retire. Running the meetinghouse, the Barrionuevos had come to know the midcoast market and taking on the inn felt natural, they said.

green room with round wall
Courtesy / Grey Havens Inn
A turreted room features a rounded outer wall.

“It was one of those things where this property is so special, and keeping it open for the community to enjoy was a pretty powerful story,” said Ali.

The partners financed the purchase through Bangor Savings Bank.

The inn is in great condition, she said.

“It’s built like a little castle, with turrets on either end,” she said. “The main floor has an enormous, handset riverstone fireplace.”

porch with rocking chairs
Courtesy / Ali Barrionuevo
Features of the shingle style hotel, built in 1904, include a wrap-around covered porch.

Large windows overlook the ocean in the living room. The Roeslers had installed a commercial kitchen and opened a restaurant called BLUE. The restaurant is led by chef Esau Crosby, who attended culinary school in Boston and whose work in Maine includes serving as head chef at Bath’s Solo Bistro and chef at Falmouth Sea Grill. 

There will be some investment in cosmetic work such as new paint. But the couple had high praise for the Roeslers’ stewardship of the property.

“Eve and Dick took excellent care of this property and made a lot of financial investments during their tenure,” said Ali.

The couple said they view Georgetown as an excellent destination market with a high level of repeat visits.

“People who come, come back,” said Carlos. “They love the peace and quiet. They love the community.”

The inn is almost booked up for weddings through 2022 and is taking 2023 reservations. The Barrionuevos are building additional programs to expand the shoulder season, such as artist and writer retreats. 

“I think people who find Georgetown think, ‘Well, this is amazing,’” said Ali. “We have all the natural attributes of Maine, it’s full of tourists, but it’s not a mob scene.”

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