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Lighthouse liquor licence leaves customers quenched Patricia Leboeuf pleboeuf@metroland.com

EMC news - Customers of the Lighthouse Restaurant in Constance Bay need to look no further to enjoy a glass of wine or beer to accompany their meals. The restaurant is now licenced to sell a limited number of alcoholic drinks. Owner Mike Saad’s decision to apply for a liquor licence at the landmark business just made sense to him. It brought in additional funds, kept his customers happy and prevented them from looking elsewhere. Before he sold wine and beer, it wasn’t uncommon for patrons to leave the restaurant when learning it was a dry area. “A lot of people like to go out for a glass of beer or wine, and if you don’t have that they’ll go somewhere else,” said Saad. “And you don’t blame them.” In a business where every morsel counts, attracting and keeping customers is integral for his livelihood. “It’s a tough business too,” said the owner. “It’s not easy anymore. You try to do whatever it takes to stay on your feet.” He prides himself as a provider for his family and by helping others provides for theirs. “We keep a lot of people are employed,” said Saad. “A lot of people make their living off this business too. “People have bills to pay so if we don’t do something I’m going to be out of business basically,” he added. Without a liquor licence, it was only a mat-

ter of time before the restaurant would struggle desperately to keep the doors open, he added. He wanted to be respectful of the community’s value and atmosphere so he approached several residents with his plan, asking for their input. Many people backed him, but others fought against his application. They created a petition and passed it around the neighborhood. Despite the roadblock, Saad managed to get his licence after he spent thousands of dollars on lawyer fees. Other than the increase in revenue and customer satisfaction, nothing much has changed. The hours remain the same, the clientele continue to behave and only beer and wine are served “When you work hard seven days a week at a family business, you aren’t going to turn it into a bar,” said Saad. “A lot of people are happy,” he added. “More than a couple people have said that this is the best thing that you have done to this place.” He continues to cater to his patrons with specials such as his $4.99 Month of May breakfast. The grocery store also remains a booze-free zone. “This is not a liquor store,” said Saad. “This is a restaurant with a liquor licence.” The Lighthouse has been a part of the community since 1928 but Saad took over the business in 2010 from city councillor Eli El-Chantiry. PATRICIA LEBOEUF/METROLAND The building contains a restaurant, a post of- The Lighthouse Restaurant received its liquor licence a few months ago. It helps owner fice, a grocery store and an ATM. Mike Saad bring in additional funds and keeps his customers happy

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