On a snowy weekend in November, my fiance and I ventured out to Elora, a small town outside of Toronto. Elora may be less than two hours outside of the city, this charming community feels a world away, and stepping inside the Elora Mill Hotel and Spa feels like stepping into a whole new dimension! This hotel is so luxe and romantic, you may spontaneously ovulate upon arrival. The refurbished mill was reopened in July of 2018 by Pearl Group Hotels. And the finished product is – dare I say – the premiere couples’ vacation destination in the province. Sorry, Langdon Hall! You had a good run, but it’s the Elora Mill’s time to shine.
When my partner and I arrived at the hotel on Saturday morning, the gray stone building was nestled in a blanket of snow. To employ an overused by apropos simile, the setting looks like something from a fairytale! Overlooking the rapids of the Elora Gorge Conservation Area, the hotel’s views are the true star of the show. The restaurant’s dining room features floor-to-ceiling windows that will make you feel immersed in the awe-inspiring vistas. This isn’t your garden variety gourmet restaurant. Admittedly, the dinner menu features a four-course tasking option offering mouth-watering delicacies like scallops, foie gras, venison, and gingerbread parfait, but how often do you eat a meal overlooking a waterfall? A trip to the Elora Mill teaches one that fancy food tastes even better when served in front of world-class views.
Once you’re done gorging yourself by the gorge, there’s much fun to be had in the hotel’s sumptuous rooms. Each one is different, with its own unique designs, but they are all exquisite examples of country decor. In addition to their eye-catching design, the guest rooms are kitted out with every possible amenity, including a complimentary mini-bar filled with chips and soft drinks, a Nespresso coffee maker, heated floors, wood-burning fireplaces, king-sized beds, and the coveted $500 Dyson hairdryer. Apparently, cost was no object!
For couples looking to reconnect, the hotel’s rooms are a veritable playground. The bathtub is big enough for two, and the roomy showers come complete with a bench – the ideal setup for slip-free shower sex. So pour yourselves some wine, light a fire, and go to town on each other while you’re out of town!
City slickers traveling to the country often worry about boredom, but the Elora Mill truly offers something for everyone. There’s the spa, where you can enjoy facials, manicures, or a Swedish massage. Like the restaurant, the spa also affords stunning views of the gorge. If you’e in the mood to do some shopping, the town itself boasts a bevy of of cute shops, such as Mermaid in Elora or Symmetry, purveyors of delightful trinkets like old-fashioned campuses, globes, silver necklaces, or eye-catching scarves. And of course there are scenic hiking trails throughout the Elora Gorge Conservation Area.
The only fault my fiance and I could find with the Elora Mill is this: its restaurant doesn’t serve brunch. Given how millennials view Sunday brunch as a sacrament, this was most shocking. Even on weekends, the kitchen stops serving brekkie at 10:30 am! So don’t sleep too late, or you’ll have to eat a burger, rather than the eggs Benedict and bread pudding on the mouth-watering breakfast menu.
However, even with its lack of brunch, the Elora Mill provides guests with a truly restorative experience. You’ll rest, you’ll play – you may even make love in the shower! In short, you’ll never want to leave…