Maine Icons has published a profile of Alan Spear, co-owner of Coffee by Design.
The property Spear and Lindemann found for the company’s first coffeehouse wasn’t in what many would consider an ideal location. In 1994, instead of being known as the Arts District, Congress Street had a much seedier reputation. The space the two leased was located near the State Theater, which at the time was known more for its adult film showings than its concerts. But it was also conveniently located across the street from the Maine College of Art, home to students in need of caffeine.