Heritage property in Niagara Falls will become the city’s first 5-star boutique hotel


Published November 29, 2023 at 11:42 am

Toronto Power Generating Station Niagara Falls 5-star hotel
A rendering of what the Toronto Power Generating Station will look like once it's transformed into a 5-star hotel - All photos courtesy of Niagara Parks

A National Historic Site in Niagara Falls that has been vacant since 1974 will soon be home to the beloved tourist town’s first five-star boutique accommodation.

This week, Niagara Parks announced that the Toronto Power Generating Station will be redeveloped by Pearle Hospitality, an Ancaster-based company that operates the Elora Mill, the Pearle Hotel and Spa in Burlington, the Ancaster Mill and other luxury properties in Ontario. 

The historic property, designed by architect E.J. Lennox, is located on the banks of the upper Niagara River, overlooking the Canadian Horseshoe Falls. According to Niagara Parks, the property was built in 1906 and supplied electricity to communities throughout the province until it closed in the mid-70s. 

“Redevelopment plans will restore and preserve the iconic heritage building and transform it into a globally significant visitor experience,” Niagara Parks said in a news release.

Niagara Parks said Pearle intends to invest $200 million in the property.

“Our firm was founded with a vision to create landmark, state-of-the-art developments. As we work to redevelop the Toronto Power site, we’re looking forward to applying the best practices we’ve learned through our history of building, redeveloping and operating distinctive and world-class destination properties across Ontario,” said Brian McMullan, director of business development and spokesperson for Pearle Hospitality, in a statement.

“Niagara Falls is already an iconic destination. Our vision for this project will let visitors enjoy the Falls experience in exactly the type of breathtaking hospitality venue that one of Canada’s foremost natural wonders deserves.” 

According to Niagara Parks, a 120-day due diligence phase will include consultations, heritage studies, environmental and archeological assessments and other negotiations.

On its website, Niagara Parks says it has four goals for the property: Restoration of the heritage building, creation of a new guest experience that does not exist in Niagara or Ontario at the moment, payment of rent to Niagara Parks (and coverage of all restoration and redevelopment costs) and economic investment that will benefit both Niagara and Ontario. 

As for what the redeveloped property will feature, Niagara Parks says visitors can expect several indoor and outdoor viewing areas, a museum, a public art gallery, restaurants, a five-star boutique hotel, event space and more. 

The website also indicates the property will feature a craft brewery, spa, theatre and more. 

The project is estimated to create over 9,000 jobs during the construction phase and the first five years of operations. 

“Toronto Power is a globally recognized landmark of Canadian architecture and industry that has stood as a central feature of the Niagara Falls landscape for over a century,” said April Jeffs, chair of the Niagara Parks Commission, in a statement. 

“Overseeing its preservation and transformation from a dormant heritage building of national significance into a brand-new, one-of-a-kind visitor experience for the benefit of local residents and tourists alike, is the embodiment of what Niagara Parks stands for as an organization. This transformational investment will elevate the entire destination of Niagara Falls, solidifying its status as a global tourism icon for generations to come.” 

The grand opening is anticipated to take place in 2027. 

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