MMJ Lounges Popping Up in Maine

A new trend in Maine offers yet another possible offshoot business opportunity in the cannabis industry: renting space to medical marijuana patients who want a convenient and secure location to smoke, vape or ingest.

Case in point: A handful of medical marijuana patients in Bangor have banded together to rent a smoking area above a downtown hookah lounge so they can consume their cannabis.

“We have doctors, lawyers and architects, and these people depend on a discreet, professional environment,” Christopher Ruhlin, who is a member of the club and also owns the hookah lounge, told The Bangor Daily News.

The MMJ group has dubbed itself the 13 Owls Club, and is renting a VIP smoking area in Ruhlin’s newly expanded Herbal Tea and Tobacco shop. Before the club was founded, Ruhlin said, many members struggled with where to medicate during work hours, sometimes resorting to taking their cannabis in their cars while parked in a garage.

The 13 Owls Club is just the latest example of such moves in the Northeast, the paper reported.

In April, MMJ patients were treated to an outdoor smoking room at the Homegrown Maine 2014 trade show. Similar setups were arranged at the Augusta Civic Center, a Holiday Inn and the Spectacular Event Center.