Heritage Preserved for the Future
Towering above the thundering falls of the Grand River and Elora Gorge, the Elora Mill Hotel & Spa has been a part of the Elora community for over 175 years. This breathtaking 19th century grist mill has been converted into a country inn, and is in the heart of Ontario’s Festival Country.
The Ciancone family (owners of Pearle Hospitality) have a great fondness for heritage locations. They find tremendous pleasure seeking landmark locations and restoring them to their previous glory. Over the years, they have found that these heritage sites carry great significance to the communities that they are a part of - where they have been and where they are heading in the future. This was more true for Elora Mill than any of the other Pearle locations. The sheer beauty of the building and the town it stands in (its people, its craft, its spirit), makes the Elora Mill a very special project.
The development will transform the scenic downtown Elora community into a bustling tourist hub, attracting guests from Ontario and beyond. The idea is to create a mixed-use development that incorporates hotel and event facilities, a destination spa, training and education programs, outdoor activities and a restaurant. The plan will revitalize the town of Elora and promote it as a four season tourism destination.
The Elora Mill will reclaim its rightful place as a premier destination in Canada.
-Aaron Ciancone, Pearle Hospitality
History of Elora Mill
In the fall of 1832, Elora founder Captain William Gilkison forged ahead with his dream of creating a water-powered settlement by establishing a sawmill on the north side of the scenic Grand River. Over the next few years, the mill experienced multiple changes in ownership, a drought in business activity caused by a world-wide recession and an extensive rebuild after the first of several fires.
The outfitting of the mill with updated equipment and the inclusion of cattle pens, storage buildings, a barn, distillery and general store helped define Elora as a major agricultural marketplace in the 1850s and 1860s. A century later, the structure underwent another major rebirth when it was converted into a five-star hotel.
Resilient throughout economic highs and lows, restored in the face of natural disaster and adaptable as host to a multitude of business ventures, the Elora Mill truly reflects the town's motto which, translated from Latin, means “Time Commands All Things.”
The Ciancone family, owners of Pearle Hospitality, were drawn to the Elora Mill not only thanks to the sheer beauty of the heritage site, but also because of its proven historical significance within the community. In restoring the landmark site, the Elora Mill is redefined as the fascinating and breathtaking tourist destination it truly is.