Built in 1834, the West House of the Salem Inn Bed and Breakfast is a fine example of Federalist architecture. It consists of 3 townhouses, 5,7, and 9 Summer Street. As such, it has lots of staircases. Some are grand; others small and winding. We have wanted to meet our guests’ desire for an elevator to bring their luggage upstairs for 40 years but didn’t see a way to incorporate one into a very old building with complicated architecture. But now, due to the ingenuity of Dick Pabich, one of the owners, we have reached other solutions! We are installing a dumbwaiter to bring luggage up, and dirty laundry down. But no kids! 😀
In order to install the dumbwaiter, a lot of architectural jiu jitsu needed to be done. Whirlpools were removed, (don’t worry, we still have some), washers and dryers were shuffled around in the basement, holes were dug in the cellar and holes opened through ceilings and floors. Firewalls were broken through. The dumbwaiter will be 36″ square, plenty of space for a suite’s worth of luggage! The shaft will be fireproofed and soundproofed.
One of the buildings is also being reconfigured to have a new, wider stairway. Again, in comes the ingenuity of Dick Pabich, who has figured out a way of installing a new set of stairs in building 9, and breaking through 2 walls to reach the second and and third floors of building 7, so the set of small winding stairs to the fourth floor will no longer be needed. We think guests in the future will appreciate this!