Historic buildings create unique homes for local businesses | News, Sports, Jobs
Historic buildings in the Williamsport area have become homes for a myriad of local business owners. Many of these buildings have undergone necessary renovations over the years, while retaining original features that tell the story of the region.
Shulze Mansion is home to the florist and wedding venue, Nevills Flowers. Completed in 1836, the house of Montoursville was once owned by the sixth governor of Pennsylvania, Governor John Andrew Shulze. âForever we will be part of history, having the name of Shulze attached to it. â¦ It’s really amazing to think. â¦ Everywhere you look, whenever you see something that reminds you of history. â¦ I mean, you think of all the people in the dances and everything they would have had here for 200 years â, said Melissa Iseley, owner of Nevills Flowers. The spacious, nearly 200-year-old home also features a backyard, set up for banquets, parties, business events, and intimate gatherings. Iseley has devoted time and resources to redesigning the house to look like it was in its original condition, retrieving some of the house’s original decor. âIt’s kind of a combination of modern and historic place.
â¦ Most of the elements have been updated to adapt to the quality of the site. â¦ I tried to collect some of the parts, to bring them back to the house where they belong. â¦ The little things that you kind of see someone mentioning, if you ever want to get rid of them let me know, and I would be happy to redeem them and try to bring some of the story back to the house, âIseley said.
Like many older homes, the Shulze Mansion has undergone renovations to meet the needs of the current owners. Some of these changes included new windows, a new boiler system and new water heaters. Although these renovations were necessary, the original features of the entire house have been preserved. “(There are) original 200 year old hardwood floors, fireplaces in every room,” she said. Another building in the area with great historical significance, known as Park Place, has had a number of different owners and renovations since it was built in 1865.
Formerly known as the Herdic House Hotel, the Victorian-era building was constructed during the Civil War as it was meant to be a first-class hotel for travelers. âIt’s as modern as any new building that happens to be an old body,â said Anothony Visco, owner of Anthony H. Visco Jr. Architect. The building is located in the historic Millionaires Row district of the city of Williamsport and now includes a number of offices for local businesses. In 2000, Visco was one of three local businessmen who worked on the renovation of the building, providing the necessary modern updates while restoring some of its original details. “There is something to be said for doing renovations in an old existing building to update and modernize to a reasonable degree.
You don’t have to demolish everything. â¦ .It’s quite simple. â¦ There are many stories to be told. And, you know, like anything else, I mean, I think that’s a very important part to maintain. Know where we came from, how we got here, for better or for worse,Visco said. The Ritz Complex in Muncy, now a combination of juice bar and sports complex, has undergone extensive renovations to suit the vision of the current owners. Built like a movie theater, the building still retains much of its original historical details. “We did a lot of renovations, so we took a lot of things that people rememberedâ¦
We kept a lot of the woodwork and things like that. â¦ I think a lot of people grew up with cinema here. They therefore know the region well,Said Ritz owner Royce Eyer. The building is now divided into two main parts, the juice bar cafÃ© and the sports complex, which includes a large batting cage. “Specifically, we demonstrated the whole floor as it actually had an angle with the seats. And so it was not usable. So we demonstrated all the ground, and then we filled it in, leveled it with concrete. It was a big project, âEyer said. The space of the sports complex is often rented out for events such as birthdays.