NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – A business that had only opened just months ago in downtown Northampton is closing its doors, following issues with the city’s building codes.

Meriyem’s Café & Bazaar announced on their social media page earlier this week that they will be closing on Sunday, October 28th. The business stated they will be closing due to “the challenging economic climate and the burdensome bureaucracy” of Northampton.

“An unexpected farewell. After much consideration and with a heavy heart, we must sadly announce the permanent closure of our beloved café and bazaar. Due to the challenging economic climate and the burdensome bureaucracy of our city it is no longer possible to continue. We want to express our deepest gratitude to all our loyal customers who made this journey worthwhile, and all those that have helped us along the way. Your support and love fueled our passion every single day. Join us as we bid farewell to a place that held so many cherished memories, blood, sweat and tears. This will be our final week before we officially close our doors on Sunday, October 29th at 2pm, Though this chapter ends, the friendships and connections made here will forever hold a special place in our hearts. Thank you for being a part of our story.”

Meriyem’s Café & Bazaar

22News contacted the Mayor’s office for further explanation on the inspection of the business. Northampton Mayor Sciarra stated the following to 22News:

“I’m truly saddened by the closure of Meriyem’s Cafe. We had heard that was a possibility from their business consultant, with whom we had been working to assist them.

We put in a lot of effort to support them. I personally made multiple visits to the cafe and asked how we could help. I also brought together a team of city officials from the Economic Development, Building, Health, and Fire/Rescue Departments to comprehensively address their questions.

Our inspectors from various departments made several visits to assist them and to answer their questions. Just a couple of weeks ago, I was having a casual meeting with a constituent at the cafe when the Fire/Rescue Chief and the Building Inspector came in again to help them figure out the legal requirements for their cooking system.

Restaurant regulations are crucial for maintaining the health and safety of customers, and every food service establishment in the city must comply with these reasonable codes, as they do in other cities.  I am confident that the City of Northampton provided quality assistance as Meriyem’s navigated the necessary process.

It is disheartening to hear that they cited bureaucracy as a challenge, but please know that I am proud of the ways that Northampton worked hard to help Meriyem’s succeed. I wish them the best.”

Mayor Sciarra

Meriyem’s Café & Bazaar had only just opened at 186 Main Street in Northampton this July which replaced the former Dobra Tea. The café sells Morroccan-style coffee and foods and also sells Moroccan products in their bazaar.

The café will be open the rest of this week before their final day this Sunday.

Local News

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