If you ask anyone who lives in Arcadia, “What defines historic downtown Arcadia?” they will tell you, “The Pink Building.”

The 30,000-square-foot edifice was built in 1926 by contractor Ralph Cannon for client Simon Rosin for $112,354 according to a 1926 newspaper article.

One of the recent past owner of the building, Len Hazen, was in the business of painting the steel in Florida bridges to prevent them from rusting. He instructed his painting crew to mix together all the unused paint that had accumulated from various projects and use it to paint the building. Red was the color of a rust preventative in some of the paint and the addition of leftover white paint yielded a shade called “Cracker Eclectic.”

While it is more formally referred to as the Rosin Building, it is commonly called The Pink Building. Over the years, the ground floor of the Pink Building has housed restaurants, a bar, a barbershop, post office, retail stores, a hardware store, beauty parlor and a drug store. The area where Rattlers is now was also a USO Club for several years.

In September 2018, Lance Stahl and Ralph Sayers sold their building in the Burns Square Historic District of Sarasota and purchased the Pink Building here in Arcadia. They have spent the last year upgrading, repairing, replacing, renovating, and cleaning to bring the building up to standard.

When invited to photograph the residential area upstairs, I was excited to see just what this 94-year-old building looked like inside. As I ascended the oak stairway leading to the second floor, I saw the beautifully finished wood showed no signs of wear. The second floor hallway is nicely appointed with artwork and antique furniture. The new wood floors are a perfect accent to the brightly painted walls. It is very inviting.

There are 23 quaint studio apartments and large efficiencies on the second floor. “These are all based on an open floor plan and are suitable for one or two residents,” said Lance. “We have replaced all the bathroom fixtures, the floors in the rooms and hallways, installed central air throughout the building, and painted everything,” he added.

The rooms that I saw were very appealing — they looked like a New York flat with one brick wall, while the other three are white, with wood floors. A large arched window looks out to the street below.

Most people in Arcadia are familiar with the businesses located on the street level. Mary Margaret’s Tea and Biscuit serves a wide variety of soups, salads, sandwiches and elegant desserts from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Proprietor Helen serves a great lunch and Michelle, Sky and Mckinna are top notch servers.

At Arcadia Seas featuring Traveled Treasures, Bob and Rhonda offer over 4,300 square feet of nautical, primitive, salvage and one-of-a-kind treasures. Plus they’re really nice people to talk to.

At Patty’s Upbeat Vintage Antiques, “New, Used, and Abused,” Miss Patty is just moving in to the location next to the arcade in the Pink Building. She will feature antiques, collectibles and some consignments. Check out her Dollar Rama Room, where all items in this room are $1. Miss Patty has a great sense of humor; you’ll be glad you stopped in.

Signz of the Timez owner Bob Grinis creates professional signs of all kinds. Plus it’s the place to have any size artwork matted and framed. The artwork of Sketch Grinis is also on display here. Sketch is truly a gifted artist and a friend. Rattlers Old West Saloon is an Old West-style bar and music venue featuring everything from country and classic rock bands to hiphop and rap DJs. It could be karaoke on Friday nights, DJs on Thursdays, or bands on Saturdays. This is where I always treat company from out of town to a cold beer after an afternoon of antiquing.

Over the past year Lance and Ralph have put a ton of work and money into upgrading the Pink Building. They are truly good people, and it’s my pleasure knowing them. It’s entrepreneurs like them who are helping to bring back Historic Downtown Arcadia to its days of splendor.

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