McDonald’s might have rebranded to look somewhat more chic than it used to, but if you want to enjoy a Big Mac in properly bougie surroundings, you have to make a beeline for Maine.
Over there, you won’t find those ubiquitous golden arches. You won’t find any peculiar statues of Ronald McDonald greeting ravenous customers.
No, the only Maccie D’s in Freeport, Maine, USA, is housed in a 168-year-old mansion.
And it still features a formal dining room, complete with wooden chairs and candles.
The building was originally a colonial house built back in 1850 by William Gore, a Freeport merchant – and it’s known as Gore House.
In 1984, it was turned into a McDonald’s – a move that was met with fierce resistance from the local population.
Back then, there were only 6,200 resisidents in the town, and they made sure that the fast food giants maintained the building’s Victorial style. They ensured that McDonald’s would not be able to erect their trademark golden arches.
Speaking to the New York Times back in ’84, Stephen Leroy, manager of media relations at McDonald’s HQ said they’d be treating the branch in ‘an extremely special way’.
‘What we are doing there is something we probably have never done before in terms of design and the amount of time and effort involved,’ he said.
‘We are willing to spend the money to make it compatible with the area, the history, the community and the people who live there.’
Freeport has very strict building design rules, and McDonald’s has had to comply.
But the unique nature of this franchise doesn’t just stop at the buidling. Freeport’s McDonald’s also has a special menu, featuring things like lobser rolls for $8.99 (£6.50).