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February Storm 2010

Go directly to last entry and pictures

June 30th- halfway through Week 18 - The last room has been completed and we are fully open.  Just in time for 4th of July!!!  During the last four months we have demolished what was left of our roof, completely stripped the rooms in the Oceanfront House, repainted, wallpapered, carpeted, restored furniture, refurnished, reset the concrete planking, demolished the front of the building, poured new patios and decks, installed new railings and electric and air conditioning, stuccoed the exterior, installed columns, roof railings, observation deck and built a new roof.  Whew!  We are done for the summer.  Our contractors will be back in the fall once we close to finish up the outside ceilings and a few odds and ends.  We have kept one of the painters to help Mark and Mario get a final coat of paint on everything.  Everyone is very relieved for things to be getting back to normal and we certainly appreciate everyone's thoughtful and kind comments and patience while we worked.  Have a very happy 4th and all of the summer.  We hope to see you soon....


Around 10:40 P.M. on Thursday, February 25th, the wind was blowing over 90 mph on the coast of Cape Ann.  And then it blew even harder.....  The roof over the covered veranda, after 50 years, had met its match and let go.  And took the rest of the roof with it.  Friday morning the phone calls started flying and so did we.  Friends, family and many others converged on Bass Rocks to view the damage and form a plan. 

By mid-day, roofers and builders were on the scene.  Most of the rubber roof on the Oceanfront House had torn off and was draped over the rear of the building, still attached to the veranda roof and the railings.  Swept up in the mess, were air conditioner condensers, wiring, lights, bricks and just about the entire fascia of the building.  Of course there were still wind advisories and coastal flood warnings, too.  The force of the wind had moved the outside cement plank and opened up a crack about two inches wide the length of seven rooms.  Until dark, crews worked to fill the long crack and exposed holes from the condensers to protect the rooms below.  A crane was brought in to detach what was left of the roof and clear up some of the debris.  The golf course crews were able to clear sections of our roof from their green. 

Saturday, brought more crews.  Electricians and A/C technicians were able to safely disconnect the mangled condensers and safely dispose of the freon contained inside.  Tarps and rubber membrane were secured to the cement roof to offer some protection from the rain.  As high winds were still forecasted for the next few days, pallets of cinder blocks were brought up to hold the tarps down.  We were able to get into some of the rooms and start to see some of the damage inside.  We were still without power and brought in generators for the contractors.  We hadn't seen any real estimates for repairs and the insurance adjustor was still accessing damage in Maine and New Hampshire.  But we had a lot of opinions from public adjustors and the news media.  Six months out of service and a million dollars in damages.  Not very encouraging.

Sunday, we had a visit from the Governor Patrick of Massachusetts, Senator Tarr, Representative Ferrante, and Mayor Kirk.  They were here to view damage and see how they could be of assistance.  Due to the usually severe amount of damage throughout Gloucester and Rockport, we would very much like to see the availability of Small Business Administration financing.  Insurance only goes so far.  We were assured that they would do their best to make that happen.  Late on Sunday, electricity was finally restored.  Hooray!!!  You don't know how much you miss it until it's gone.  Heat at last!  We could finally start the cleanup inside the rooms.  Roofers' bids started tricking in.  Our own housekeepers started lugging wet linens to the local laundromat. 

Week 1 Monday morning, four inches of wet, cold slush.  What a mess.  'Pods' are delivered.  Furniture moved.  The insurance adjuster, building contractor, structural engineer, disaster restoration service, more friends and things are really moving now.  A temporary roof is installed to get us through until the weather allows for a permanent solution.  Furniture is being moved to a secure, climate controlled warehouse for professional care.  Giant suction hoses, industrial dehumidifiers and high output heaters are snaked all over the building.  Assessments are made of the structure and it's not so bad after all.  I gave them the date - April 30 - that's when we open.  And it will be done!!! 

Tuesday, bright, sunny and cold.  The drapes and linens were packed and taken away to be cleaned and stored.  More furniture was cataloged and removed for storage.   Carpet pad was thrown out and carpets are being cleaned and dried.  The temporary roof was completed and reinforced for expected gale force winds tomorrow.  All of the debris in the parking lot were broken up and trucked off.  Everything looks a lot better with the outside cleaned up. 

Wednesday we saw some flurries and ice pellets.  Beds were the next to go.  We seem to have a revolving door with the dumpsters going through here.  A heat truck was brought in to speed up the drying process which is the priority right now.  Although, it's so cold I would think its more like ice now.  The temporary roof is holding up even with the wind.  We should have a plan from the structural engineer by tomorrow so our new roof can be put on. 

Thursday and Friday - Our engineering plans are in and our contractor has visited again to firm up his plans.  We are looking at the weather for next week with the hope that our permanent roof can go on.  We had a little snow and a little rain with no leaking on the temporary roof.  I want to thank everyone for their thoughts and kind words.  While the pictures are certainly dramatic, there is nothing wrong that can't be fixed and we have the best team on it.

Saturday and Sunday -  It has finally warmed up and was rather pleasant outside.  Mark got up on the roof of the Stacy House and replaced a couple of shingles that had blown off.  For such a terrible storm, there was very little damage to this 100 year old building.  We are in the final stages of treating the rooms and most have just ozone being pumped in now.  After going through all of the rooms today, it seems as if the interior damage has definitely been minimized.  Some paint and/or wallpaper is all that is needed in most of the rooms that were damaged.   

Week 2 Monday and Tuesday - We worked with ServiceMaster to finish up the drying of the rooms.  There were some 'hot spots' that needed a little extra attention.  For you golfers, I wanted to let you know that the golf course grounds crew came in immediately on Friday and removed our roof section from the 3rd hole green.  The green has been repaired and there is a new cover to protect it from the elements.  Good as new!

Wednesday was a little cooler but still sunny and bright.  The contractors have arrived to start the roof repairs.  The concrete planks need to be moved into place but first they are being prepped so this does not happen again.  We get to go visit our furniture in storage in Stoneham today.  We have been told that there is no damage to it but I want to see for myself.

Thursday and Friday, I found out what a 'lull' is and what it is used for.  After the concrete planks were scraped clean of insulation and grout, they were carefully set back into place.  This took quite a while to be sure everything was snug and in the right positions.  Once this is finished, the roof area can be prepared for its new rubber roof.  That is not happening this weekend though because we are now preparing again for a nor'easter.  Gale force winds out of the northeast with 'inches' of rain. 

Saturday and Sunday - The temporary roof was whipped with 50+mph winds for two days now and is showing some cracks.  Our team has worked through the weekend to keep up with the weather but I can't wait for that permanent roof to go on.  We still have the crane and even that has moved in this weather.  Something new on my list is we definitely need a webcam to watch those waves!!!  Fabulous!  Although we are under a coastal flood watch, we haven't had any debris on Atlantic Road at all.

Week 3 Monday - Still stormy, nothing happening today...

Tuesday and Wednesday - Sunny skies again and Massachusetts has taken a pummeling.  Topsfield, which is three towns to the southwest hit the record in rains at over 9 inches since Friday.  All over the North Shore, highways and streets are flooded.  But our roofers got here bright and early and started in on our roof.  We have a good stretch of clear, warm weather and our roof should be complete by next week.  Prep work inside the rooms has started also.

End of Week 3 - The new roof was finished up to the observation deck.  The deck needed to be disassembled so that we could go underneath.  Preparing for the rainstorm of the week next Sunday and Monday.

Week 4 - Wallpaper installers started on Monday, removing the old wallpaper and prepping the walls.  Orders have gone out for wallpaper, new beds, and other items that were damaged.

Week 5 - After a rainy start to the week, we were given a special treat.  Days and days of sunshine and warm weather.  We are looking forward to taking advantage of this streak of good construction weather.  The main roof has been completed and we have moved on to the front of the building.  Guess what everyone.... when you come back this summer we will be looking a little different.  We are not able to replicate the brick on the front of the Oceanfront House.  It originally came from South Carolina.  So all the brick is coming down.  But we still love our southern colonial look and the columns will be replaced with new ones.

Week 6 - The patio in front of the double rooms of the Oceanfront House has been torn up so we can pour stronger footings for the new columns.  These will have steel inside that will tie into the new roof over the decks.  All of the brick is down now and the front is being prepped for a smooth stucco finish.  The roof over the walkway in back was replaced this week also.  Most of interior painting is complete.  We are moving along quickly with this weather.

Week 7 - The front is being prepped for the new patio and for those of you that like more space...You are going to get it.  We are adding a few feet onto the first floor patio and the second floor deck.  We are extending the second floor roof over all of the rooms in the middle and we will have twice as many columns as before. 

Week 8 - Stucco prep for the two wings is done and they are working on the middle of  the second floor.  The footings for the new EXTRA STRONG columns are in and awaiting the concrete pour.  We had some rain on Thursday with a beautiful double rainbow right across the rocks.  The observation deck is back in place and the fascia is going on.

Week 9 - April 30th - Opening Day!!!!  What a week we had.  The first floor patio was poured on Thursday after a rainy start to the week.  It is four feet wider to give everyone a little extra room.  Stucco was completed on the south wing of the Oceanfront House.  We moved some furniture back from storage.  Our new beds were delivered, heavenly pillow-tops!  Our wallpaper had to be custom-made and was finally delivered on Wednesday.  Electricians, air conditioning contractors, painters, builders, telephone technicians, excavators, masons, plumbers, and more were able to bring about 13 rooms on-line for our guests.  The weather is gorgeous and will be all weekend.

Week 10 - May 7th  First, I want to send a really big THANK YOU to all of our guests.  I really appreciate that you chose to spend your time with us especially when we are not at our best.  We opened this week with fifteen rooms and by the end of the week, we had twenty ready.  It felt like summer all week with temperatures in the seventies and sunny weather.  The contractors have started on the railing for the roof, the interior painting is just about complete, and the wallpaper hangers are moving along.  We had a little setback with the steel but that will be taken care of next week.  We have no guests scheduled for Monday and Tuesday, so we will be taking advantage of the clear weather and be painting the exterior of the building now.

Week 11 - May 14  So much is happening now it is hard to keep up.  We got a coat of paint on the back of the building which cleans it up a lot.  Our steel has arrived and the extensions for the decks are going up.  We did breakup more of the existing deck to make the new pour stronger.  We have a specialist working on the furniture repair as we were not able to save it all.

Week 12 - May 20  We are looking forward to the second deck extension concrete pour tomorrow.   And the new pool patio.  But in order to grade for the pool, we had to get water back in.  The Water Wagons came in this morning and in short order, the pool was filled and then we had our first swimmers of the year - a mamma duck and 10 little ducklings!!!  They came right out from under one of the shrubs by room 103, trotted past everyone and jumped right in.  They were so little, we had to help them out of the pool and then they went right back under the bush after drying off in the sunshine.

Week 13 - May 28th Happy Memorial Day Weekend!!!  The pool is open and our new lounge chairs have been tested out by two little girls who wanted to be the first in the pool.  They said it was nice and warm.  We have every room opened except for the middle of the Oceanfront House and two on the patio in the pool area.  We have to do some reconfiguring with the pool fence but I think we have come up with a great solution.  All our concrete work was finished this week and we look forward to the second floor veranda roof going up next week.  I think the contractors like the cookies.....

Week 14 - June 5th  We have had all kinds of weather this week, fierce thunder storms, fog, and hot, hazy, and sunny.  All the rain in March and the warm weather in May really has the flowers blooming.  Our beach roses are all in bloom and smell wonderful.  The second floor veranda roof is all framed and roof sheathing is on.  The second floor stucco is getting it's third and final coat.  We have been chasing the birds out of their new found nesting places before they get blocked in when the rest of the fascia goes on next week.  The city surprised us with Atlantic Road getting resurfaced this week, making a smooth ride for the bikes! 

Week 15 - June 11th  At long last, we can finally start seeing a light at the end of the tunnel.  The fascia of the roof is on the front of the building and the rubber roof will be installed next week.  The trim work looks wonderful.  The exterior of the columns (the white part) have been sitting in our back yard waiting to be cut and slid onto their supports.  The rail system for the second floor, after a few missteps will be installed into those columns.  And then we can open the rest of the rooms.  We will then be at a point where we can stop for the summer and pick up in the fall the rest of the cosmetic finish work.  There are some things that we knew we would have to live with for a while; our furniture supplier has closed down and replacement furniture would take four to six months, some of the exterior painting can not be done unless we are fairly empty, some exterior door replacement and the ceilings on the porches are also being debated.  While everyone has just been so wonderful while this is going on, there comes a point where there are just too many people here.  We will fulfill our goal of becoming weather-tight and comfortable and not have construction take over the summer season.

Week 16 - June 18th Our new front veranda is just beautiful.  All of the columns were raised this week and the railings were finished at 4:30 this afternoon, just in time for our first guests on the new veranda.  We went with glass balusters on the railings to take full advantage of the view.  And the extra four feet just give so much more room.  The front of the building just feels more substantial.  Tomorrow the landscaper will be here to measure for sod, so we can put our lawn back together next week.  Sorry, no mud wrestling.  And next week, we are going to work on the rooftop railings, the backs of the columns, and all the little stuff so we are functional for the summer. 

Week 17 Buona Fiesta!!!  It's St. Peter's Fiesta here in Gloucester and the weather has been perfect for all the festivities.  A thunderstorm on the first night but warm and sunny the rest.  While it is always difficult to walk the Greasy Pole, rain makes it nearly impossible.  All rooms open but one now and we will be saying ciao to our construction crew this week, until the fall.  We have a few odds and ends to clean up this week for the summer and a lone painter here to paint the columns and the ceilings of the outside deck.  Our contractors will be back this fall to put in the ceilings for the outside decks and change out some doors.  The landscaper started this week and placed two truckloads of sod down but we still need more.  Back on Monday to finish up.  Mark's got a lot of watering to do.

June 30th- halfway through Week 18 - The last room has been completed and we are fully open.  Just in time for 4th of July!!!  During the last four months we have demolished what was left of our roof, completely stripped the rooms in the Oceanfront House, repainted, wallpapered, carpeted, restored furniture, refurnished, reset the concrete planking, demolished the front of the building, poured new patios and decks, installed new railings and electric and air conditioning, stuccoed the exterior, installed columns, roof railings, observation deck and built a new roof.  Whew!  We are done for the summer.  Our contractors will be back in the fall once we close to finish up the outside ceilings and a few odds and ends.  We have kept one of the painters to help Mark and Mario get a final coat of paint on everything.  Everyone is very relieved for things to be getting back to normal and we certainly appreciate everyone's thoughtful and kind comments and patience while we worked.  Have a very happy 4th and all of the summer.  We hope to see you soon....

I can't wait for tomorrow......stay tuned, I'll keep you posted.


What's That!

Roof hanging off the back of the building.

What's different about this picture?

The roof we sat under last year is gone.

More rubber roof.

That is one long building. And one strong piece of membrane.

Deck still attached.

The wood veranda roof and fascia is still attached. Too heavy to just put back.

Piece of the veranda roof.

Lots of debris still on the roof.

Pieces of Bass Rocks all over the golf course.

The golf club was right out there repairing the green.

Clean up has begun.

Trying to get organized and access the damage.

First temporary solution.

Cinder blocks were placed on these. Forty mph winds expected tonight.

Fascia that was left.

The roof pulled the fascia out and that pulled the brick off.

Why are those columns still there?

We don't know why those didn't fly away too.

We'll work all night!!!

Temporary roof being installed.

Working into the night.

Crews setting up dehumidifiers and vacuum to dry up the rooms.

Debris pile in the parking lot.

Cleaned up at last!!

Drying out the rooms.

They used heaters, blowers, and ozone generators to make our rooms perfect again!

New Roof!!!

Brick coming down.

Double rainbow over Bass Rocks!

Getting ready for the new patio.

The old patio was removed to put in new steel columns. These will hold any roof in place.

Pouring the new patio for the first floor on April 29th.

Our new patio is done, now we are on to redesigning the pool area for our new lounge chairs. The others did not survive the storm.

South wing is stuccoed! A preview of our new Look!

North wing is stuccoed! And look at our railing on top.

Ducks in the Pool.

The water wagon is still here. They couldn't wait for the pool to be filled.

Going Back Home?

I think we should name you Wobble.

Hot and Sunny!

After a fierce thunderstorm last night and fog this morning, our weather has surprised us turning beautiful.

Second Floor Veranda.

We have made the porch four feet deeper and extended the roof to cover all the double rooms.

Peonies In Bloom!

End of the day clean-up!

Even I can picture what we will look like now.

June 16th - Getting Close Now!!

Columns Going Up

Glass Balusters So You Can See Right Through

Second Floor Veranda Is Now Open!

Buona Fiesta! Welcome Summer.

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Bass Rocks Ocean Inn | 107 Atlantic Road, Gloucester, MA 01930
 978-283-7600 | 888-802-7666 |
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