~ Rossi's Restaurant ~ 270 Exchange Street ~ Millis MA ~
History of Rocklawn
Originally established in 1988, Rossi’s is located in the historic Rocklawn Building in Millis. The 100+ year old Victorian mansion was designed in 1887 by Frank W. Weston and built as a summer residence for Helen Van Kleeck- daughter of Lansing Millis for whom the town was named. The Van Kleeck’s entertained often and the home became the showplace of the community. In the 1920’s it was sold to J. Allen and Ida Evelyn Cole whose daughter Elinore operated the well known “Holiday Shop” in the area that is now the cocktail lounge. In 1987 the building underwent extensive renovations by the building’s owner- local developer Tom Roche. All of the original charm and character was preserved.
From 1988-1997 Rossi’s was operated by Lou and Beth Rossi whose family had owned and operated Rossi’s in Dedham for over 20 years. After Lou’s premature death the restaurant was sold in 1997 and operated under new ownership using the same name until 2007. The restaurant closed in October of 2007. In 2008 it underwent extensive renovations and re-opened under the direction of Lou and Beth’s oldest children- Joanna and Louis.
Rossi’s boasts four elegantly appointed dining rooms on the first floor that feature original ceramic tile fireplaces and rich mahogany paneling in addition to the cocktail lounge and enclosed porch. On the second floor there are three additional dining/ banquet rooms, a bride’s changing room and photography area as well as the restaurant offices.
Besides being the perfect setting for lunch or dinner, Rossi’s can also accommodate private parties for groups of 8-200. On Saturday afternoons, Sunday and Monday the entire restaurant can be yours for the day.
Click HERE to take a virtual tour of Rocklawn!