Roanoke to welcome new business lounge in historic building - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

Roanoke to welcome new business lounge in historic building

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A new business lounge is getting set to open in Roanoke.

Athenaeum Coworking Center on Albemarle Avenue in Old Southwest will officially open its doors to clients in mid-February.

Despite the presence of the Roanoke Business Lounge downtown, owner Mark Gibson believes there is enough demand to support both businesses.

"We're hoping that enough people will see it and get the information and see it as a viable alternative to renting space," he said. "(Hopefully) we'll fill the place up. But we really don't know."

While the business might be new, where it will be housed is anything but.

For more than a decade Gibson, who is an architect, worked to renovate and restore the century-old building.

It's served many functions over the years, including a boarding house.

Gibson discovered several celebrities stayed in the house, including Mickey Rooney and the New York Yankees.

He said transforming it into a business while keeping the integrity of the house was no easy task.

"Everything's been replaced while at the same time we're trying to keep the historical architectural fabric of the building," Gibson said. "It's been very hard and very long and drawn out."

Athenaeum Coworking Center will have an open house February 14 and open the following Monday.

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