The Quarterdeck, a beloved Scituate landmark hovering over the harbor on Front Street, will close its doors mid-March after 45 years of business.
Owner Joan Noble said she will open a more traditional antique store on Country Way, but the iconic two-story cottage will no longer be the home to antiques and trinkets. The Lucky Fin Schooner will man the sea-worn dock out back and offer day trips.
A ticket office and possibly a coffee shop will be put on the first floor.
“It’s an extremely difficult building to take care of…sometimes we’re almost in the water,” Noble said of her decision to sell the building two years ago, and close up shop next month. “…Today everything is so complex and difficult and expensive. I couldn’t do it anymore.”
The decision was further prompted as Noble’s suppliers dwindled, with people either moving on to other careers, retiring, or passing away.
“It means I have to get out to L.A. or New York and start all over again, and find new sources. I just decided it was time to move on,” Noble said.
The town’s reaction to the closing has been overwhelming. A large sign in the window drew customers in spurts on an early Friday morning.
Many carried lists of things their loved ones wanted, with hundreds of vacationers near and far eager to get a piece of the shop while it still sat on the harbor.
“One woman, I forget how much she spent, she brought lists from everybody,” Noble said.
Mary Griffin said had been in the store repeatedly in the past few days, buying future gifts and picked up requested items her granddaughter requested.
Beverly Westerveld roamed the shop’s small corridors with a nostalgic grin, recounting how the store was the second place she ever shopped in by herself.
She’s brought every person who’s ever visited town to the locale.
“[I’m] very sad. It’s been a part of my life for so many years,” Westerveld said.
As sad as townspeople are to see the shop go, Noble said her time with the building has reached an end.
“It’s been a love affair. A wonderful love affair,” she said.