DOCS Humidor- Cigar, Wine & Jazz Lounge

Matt Winburn Downtown Stories

A humidor is defined as an airtight container for keeping cigars or tobacco moist. That definition pretty much holds true, unless you’re in Downtown Hartsville, in which a humidor is so much more…

If you’ve never been to DOCS Humidor- Cigar, Wine & Jazz Lounge, the premise might hold some big surprises. Cigars, humidors, drinks, music- there’s a lot going on! Not to mention it’s located in a converted railway depot which has been rehabilitated and fitted with crystal chandeliers, a walk-in humidor, bar, lounge areas, and state-of-the-art air humidifiers. There’s a lot to take in, visually! Pairing all of this with the welcoming atmosphere that Drs. McCord and Robinson have created makes DOCS Humidor a natural fit for Downtown Hartsville.

DOCS Humidor- Cigar, Wine & Jazz Lounge, which opened in October of 2022, is the brainchild of Dr. Gregory McCord and his wife, Angela, along with Dr. Leroy Robinson and his wife, Tammie, all four of whom have Doctoral degrees- hence DOCS Humidor. “Dr. Robinson and I go back for years; we’re fraternity brothers,” says Gregory. When he initially thought about expanding his humidor and lounge to Hartsville, he knew he wanted Dr. Robinson on his side. Dr. McCord’s other cigar bar, The Humidor- Cigar, Wine, and Jazz Lounge, has been a staple in Downtown Bennettsville for four years. After spending time in Hartsville, Gregory knew he needed to try his hand at expanding the humidor business here.

“I love the quaintness of Downtown Hartsville. The more I explored, the more I liked,” he says. Gregory also cites the renovation of Mantissa Row, previously an alleyway and now a downtown pocket park, as a major selling point. “After I knew I wanted to open up here, I talked to Leroy about a partnership and the rest is history,” says Gregory, adding that the historic passenger depot wasn’t his initial choice. “I was actually looking at three different options downtown and none of them panned out.” He met property owner, Brandy Stellingworth, at a wedding reception and the two sparked up a conversation. “Initially, I wasn’t impressed with the building, but after talking with Brandy, she convinced me that this could be done,” says McCord. He acknowledges that both he and Brandy have a designer’s eye, which is what finally sold him over.

The historic Hartsville Rail Passenger Station is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and has recently undergone a revitalization thanks to the efforts of Brandy Stellingworth. The structure was built in 1908 by the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad Company and was instrumental in the growth of Hartsville as a prosperous town.  After many years of transit, the ACL Railroad Company discontinued operations of the train station in 1940, and in 1948, ACL Railroad Company Chair of the Board of Directors, ALM Wiggins, converted the station into his office. The building also served as the hub of genealogical research for Darlington County for several years before being sold and converted into its present purpose.

As for the renovation of the building, not a lot had to be done structurally. A wooden deck was built to accommodate outdoor seating, and a new turf lawn was added. Internally, a humidor was needed, as well as a state-of-the-art air humidification system which takes in smoke and puts out clean air. Member lockers were also added for those who want to keep their personal selection of products on hand. Gregory notes that membership is not required but does come with certain benefits such as access to members-only areas. Guests can also pay a nominal cover charge for access to these areas.

Despite the membership, Gregory says he wants DOCS Humidor to feel welcoming and inviting to everyone. “We’re working to create a nice, relaxed atmosphere. We seek out people from all walks of life- younger to more mature, politicians and educators. Our customers are not identifiable as one type. We welcome everyone.” In addition to bar and cigar services, the establishment also offers events such as spa nights, karaoke, and other experiences to draw a diverse crowd. DOCS Humidor is keen on building relationships and partnerships with fellow merchants and views their services as complimentary, not as competition.

When asked what the future of DOCS Humidor- Cigar, Wine & Jazz Lounge looks like Gregory says it’s a slow ripple. “Right now, we’re enjoying the company and new faces. We’re looking at the two year mark this October, adjusting as needed, and moving forward.” DOCS Humidor is located at 114 S. Fourth Street and open Wednesday and Thursday, 5pm-10pm, Friday and Saturday, 5pm-11pm, and Sunday 5pm-9pm. For more information, visit docshumidorcw.com, and be sure to follow them on social media.