A Romantic Weekend Getaway at Elora Mill Hotel & Spa
I first learned about the Elora Mill Hotel in an article that talked about the gorgeous renovation the property had recently undergone. I knew as soon as I saw the pictures and started asking around that this hidden gem was going to become very popular very quickly. Torontonians are always looking to escape the city for a weekend getaway. Places like Prince Edward County and Niagara on the Lake have become hot spots for these quick holidays but Elora is an area of Ontario that is just on the cusp of reaching this kind of awareness that it still feels like you are pulling into a town that is all yours.
Arriving in Elora you cross a picturesque bridge over the famous Elora gorge to the entrance of the Main Street lined with antique lanterns and quaint shops, bakeries, a brewery and a handful of restaurants. To make your way to the Elora Mill Hotel you simply turn left at the lights and onto a cobble stone road that feels more like Old Quebec City than the rest of Elora. When you arrive at the hotel you will quickly notice the attention to detail and a sense of luxury in nature like nothing you can really imagine before you visit. The hotel itself is perfectly perched above the gorge with a massive glass window replacing what would be a wall to reveal the river, rocks and nature that surrounds it. The rich gold and baby blue décor from the main lobby into the bar and restaurant extenuate the feeling of luxury but it is the kindness of the young and friendly staff that quickly remind you that you are in an adorable small town and gives you the space to not feel intimidated but rather at home.
Upon checking in we were given a tour of the property which includes the lobby gathering area with a fireplace, an exposed chefs kitchen (soon to be space for private functions), the bar and restaurant on the main floor as well as the Penstock Lounge, featuring a piano and lounge area on the lower level of the hotel, with a rock cave/wine cellar private dining area still in the works, as well as a separate building for the spa and a rooftop pool and hot tub.
Although our room was not immediately ready (we were eager & early and they were accommodating not one but two weddings!) we found there was a lot to enjoy in the town!
- Catch a movie at the town theatre, The Gorge Cinema - if you haven’t visited a small town theatre you should add it to your bucket list!
- Local Brewery, Elora Brewing Company – try a flight of beers or pick some up to enjoy later
- A walk through nature along the Elora Gorge
After spending the day enjoying the town we headed back to the hotel to officially check in. Once in our room the scope of the renovation became clear. This hotel is impeccable. The rooms feel like a fairy tale. The design choice is not typical, bold but elegant, with a feeling of royalty. Our terrace suite was fully equipped with complimentary snacks, beverages and a gorgeous terrace that would have been much better enjoyed in the summer. However, it was made clear to us that the foot of snow could be shoveled off and a fire could be made to enjoy with blankets at any time. The high ceilings, plush pillows and blankets, desk space, heated floors in the bathroom and my favorite – soft lights under the bed when you get up in the night to guide you (a must!) all leave you feeling completely spoiled and grateful.
We could have stayed in the room all night, and of course you can if you’d like, but I HIGHLY recommend taking advantage of the restaurant, one of the best dining experiences I have had. A four course prix fixe menu with an option to add a glass of wine hand selected to match each course by the in house sommelier is such a treat. Even if you don’t go with the prix fixe and decide to choose cocktails and one dish from the menu I’m sure you will be thrilled.
Following our indulgent evening, a day at the spa was seriously a cherry on top of what would have already been a weekend to remember. The Elora Hotel & Spa is a place of total tranquility. The style from the hotel flows into this building in a softer way, paler colored décor choices, while maintaining the essence of luxury with an entire glass wall in the lounge area to enjoy the view while you wait for your service. Again, what might be considered too “posh” is deflected immediately by the kind and friendly staff that reassure you and make you feel that you belong. The rooftop pool overlooking the hotel and river would be amazing in the warmer months but the hot tub was perfect on a snowy day.
Our time at the Elora Mill Hotel & Spa was such a joy. I hope you’ll consider it for your next getaway soon before you hear all your friends talking about it!
Thanks for reading,