When we moved here a year ago one of the things that we fell in love with was the little downtown area not too far from our new house. For nearly a year we have carefully watched the progress of the renovation of a gorgeous old building called The Savoy. With promises to be a bookshop and a cafe, we could hardly contain ourselves. We patiently waited until last summer when it was supposed to open. And then the fall. And then winter. And then late winter…and then today came and we discovered that the gorgeous exterior was just a hint at what was inside. A bookshop. A gorgeously renovated bookshop. Well worth the wait. Smells of new books and coffee. Friendly people. A buzz that can only be created by a new space.
I have always been a bookshop sort of girl. I can remember being quite young and using my piggy bank money to select books on our trips to the shops. One of my first acquisitions was a little set of books called The Nutmeg Library which contained four little Maurice Sendak books including Alligators All Around and Pierre. They came in a little tiny box and had dust jackets. I treasured them and now our kids love to read them too. They were the sort of books that you could only buy at a small bookshop. The small bookshops that have slowly disappeared from our current retail landscape.
And while this particular space is not quite complete, there was really already so much to see. The details of this space are quite beautiful to just stop and look at. From the light fixtures and gorgeous flooring to the display tables and sitting areas- it is a space that really asks you to slow down and enjoy your time there. The books are so carefully curated – they are not what you are going to find at your local big bookshop, at least not in the cooking section. They are unusual and stunning inside and out. They have titles that beg you to stop and peek inside. Quality over quantity. Aesthetically pleasing to look at and touch. And we know, we know. Not too long ago we were making the case to not pay full price for a book when you can buy used or discounted. But that was before today. Before we stepped into this gorgeous space. Before we were reminded what bookshops are supposed to be like. Before we spent a small fortune on beautiful new books that we will treasure. Books like A Boat, a whale & A Walrus by Renee Erickson which features a gorgeous strawberry shortcake or Spring, the cookbook by one of our favorite authors, Skye Gyngell which is full of amazing photographs of textural landscapes and stunning tables. And while we are still firm believers in our favorite used book store stomping grounds…this new bookshop will, we already know, become one of our favorite stops in town.
The Savoy Bookshop and Cafe is located at 10 Canal Street in Westerly, Rhode Island.