The Mermaid Tavern Guam’s only micro-brewery will be reopening at its new location at the Bridgepoint Building in HagÅtña in January 2007 Nadia A. Wood partner at the tavern told the Journal.

The original location at the GCIC building suffered major damage after an Aug. 22 fire. "An electrical fire happened. It was burned pretty badly so it couldn’t really be determined exactly what happened " she said. The entire wing where the tavern was located incurred major smoke damage but the tavern was the only establishment with fire damage.

She said that she and her father Harold R. "Rick" Wood also a partner in the tavern wanted to expand before the fire. Because of the fire they would have had to rebuild so they decided to move to a bigger location. "We had no expansion room. We were maxed out in that space and it was either start up again with the same limitations or find someplace new " Harold Wood said.

The Woods decided to relocate to the Bridgepoint Building because they liked the location and they wanted to stay in HagÅtña. Harold Woods told the Journal "We’ve always wanted to be a part of HagÅtña even when we started in GCIC. We’re not a tourist place. We’re a local place and we just want to be a part of HagÅtña "¦ I like to be part of the revitalization of HagÅtña."

The new location is about 2 900 square feet. "The last place was 1 300 square feet. It’s a big expansion. We’re more than doubling in size." Nadia Wood said. The new location will be able to accommodate about 100 customers.

The tavern will have about 15 employees. She said that most of the old employees would be working at the new location. The tavern will be open from 11 a.m. through 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. through 10 p.m. Monday through Friday and on Saturday it will be open from 5 p.m. through 11 p.m. "We are looking at expanding our hours " Nadia Wood said.

She said that about $90 000 would be invested into getting the new location up and running. The new location would have to be renovated before opening. The estimate doesn’t include the value of the equipment that was salvaged. Harold Wood said "All of our kitchen equipment except for a couple of refrigeration units were okay." Renovations began early November.

"We’re painting and putting in a kitchen in the back. It was pretty much just an empty space." A new bar is also being built. She said that a bank was located there before the tavern and that the bar would be wrapped around the vault and the vault would be used as an office space. The targeted opening date is Jan. 1.

Customers have been asking when the Mermaid Tavern would be reopening. Nadia Wood said "They’ll stop by come in and check things out. Jeff Pleadwell from Jeff’s Pirates Cove hired one of my waitresses for the interim. He would ask her on a daily basis when we were reopening."

Nadia Wood said that after the fire other members of the business community were very helpful. KwikSpace Guam Inc. offered to store some of their belongings for free and Marty’s Tex-Mex KFC and T.G.I. Friday’s offered to store their perishable items for free.

Along with the new location Harold Wood said that the name of the tavern would also be changed to the Mermaid Tavern & Grill so people know that it isn’t just a place to drink it is also a place to eat and socialize. MBJ