Scandinavian Spa Proposed For Gravenhurst
One of the most amazing, yet unused, properties in all of Muskoka could soon be getting the facelift it deserves.
A group of investors has come together with a proposal to invigorate a 74-acre Lake Muskoka waterfront property in Gravenhurst which once was home to the Muskoka Regional Centre.
A proposed $250 million dollar investment into the property, which is being sold by the Province of Ontario, could see a tremendous boost to Gravenhurst’s tourism, employment, and active living.
It would also see an opportunity for local post-secondary students in a variety of careers.
The property has been sitting with a derelict, empty building since 1994 and is closed to the public.
The proponents of the Cliff Bay Muskoka project are proposing a four-seasons Scandinavian Spa themed retreat and tourist area. It would be the first of its kind in Muskoka and, judging by other Scandinavian Spas in Ontario, it is sure to be a success.
The team is headed by Kirill Soloviev, Founder, President and Head of Strategic Planning for MKSBV Developments, which is leading the Cliff Bay Muskoka project proposal.
Soloviev is a private equity professional with over a decade of experience structuring, financing, and managing investments; as well as putting together amazing teams to make dreams a reality.
It was his desire to develop a Scandinavian Spa style escape in Muskoka which led to the Cliff Bay Muskoka project’s initial steps. He connected with David Bemmann from Cayman Marshall to research sites for this project and eventually the proposed location was found.
“I love Muskoka, I spend a lot of time here,” says Soloviev. “I love the nature, the rocks, the trees, the water … everything. It’s so special. When I visited the site, I fell in love with it.”
Soloviev says once the Spa Resort is operational, people will visit Cliff Bay Muskoka for the full-service world-renowned medical spa, luxury short-term and seasonal stay accommodations of various sizes, high end food and beverage, a top quality fitness centre and tennis courts, transit and shuttle service to the airport and downtown Gravenhurst, and much, much more.
If approved, the project is expected to be developed in three stages over 2-3 years, beginning with Phase 1. Soloviev says the proposal could create up to 750 seasonal and full-time jobs for the Gravenhurst region once the first two stages of Cliff Bay Muskoka are fully operational. This doesn’t include the many Muskoka contractors and material suppliers who will have income opportunities during the project’s building stages.
“Local trades have a good idea of how the infrastructure works in this community,” says Kristofer N.V. Potts, Executive VP of Construction. “We’re looking at three or four years, including through the winter, of work available to the trades during the development and construction of the property.”
The Cliff Bay Muskoka project proponents are anticipating an increase of two nights to the length of stay for regional tourism, which will benefit many other businesses in Gravenhurst and other communities as longer stays mean more exploring.
Aside from employment opportunities, the community will benefit from a public beach and boat access, a public trail system being planned for the property, including a much-needed dog park for the area.
As well, with an eye on the future of Gravenhurst and Muskoka as a whole, the Cliff Bay Muskoka project has already reached out and has a memorandum of understanding with Georgian College to work with students and provide internships in the Carpentry, Acupuncture, Medi-Spa, and Hospitality programs.
There are other community-first items on the Cliff Bay Muskoka to-do list.
“We’re also going to outfit it with a centre of excellence for long-term care, some medical office space and it’s going to be a location which has heavy public access with the dog park and the trails,” says John Mutton, Principal of Government Relations for Cliff Bay Muskoka, and former Mayor of Clarington, Ontario.
“The trail is going to pay a lot of respect to the history of the site with a lot of plaques along the way to honour the past. This project is going to be a great anchor to Gravenhurst with connectivity to the downtown and the potential to create a lot of jobs.”
The proposal from the Cliff Bay Muskoka proponents is a sound one with many community benefits. A Scandinavian Spa retreat would take Gravenhurst to the next level and anyone who cares about that community should support this proposed project.
Listen to an interview with the proponents here: