October 25th, 2011 by Peggy Farabaugh
Part of our feasibility study to see if the Skyline property on Vermont's Hogback Mountain would work for Vermont Woods Studios is anaylzing the possibility of co-locating a cafe or wine bar with the furniture showroom. It's not a real natural combination, is it (furniture and food)?
But two factors keep pointing to the pairing of these functions at Skyline:
- The Skyline location, on top of Hogback Mountain, with it's 100 mile view of the Green Mountain Forest offers what I've been looking for to raise awareness about where your wood furniture comes from. After all, you can buy imported wood furniture anywhere but it's probably going to be made from illegally harvested trees, clear-cut from the world's rapidly disappearing tropical rainforests. Our customers are interested in acquiring heirloom quality, Vermont-made furniture that's crafted from natural, solid, wood that's been sustainably harvested from beautiful, well-managed American forests (more about green, environmental concerns here).
- The other factor is that: How could you operate ANYTHING at Skyline without inviting people to come up and enjoy the view? It would be kinda like that commercial for Ally bank where the guy asks 2 little girls if they'd like a pony. He shows a real pony to one of the girls but only gives her a little figurine instead. The announcer says something like: "even kids know it's wrong to hold out on somebody." That's how I'd feel having a business at Skyline that didn't offer people a place to relax and enjoy the view with a cup of tea or a glass of wine.
So now we're trying to figure out how to strategically pair a Vermont-made furniture showroom with a cafe or wine bar. Allocating space is the conundrum of the day. 60% furniture — 40% cafe? Additional seasonal seating outside? I guess the answers will reveal themselves as we do our research.
Got ideas? Suggestions? Interested in running an upscale cafe at Skyline? Contact us on Facebook and jump into the conversation. We'll be looking for local help as we navigate through the feasibility study and (hopefully) beyond.