The owners of the Wigamog Inn in Haliburton say they have not given up on the property despite it being put on the market.
A listing has gone up for the Kashagawigamog Lake property with an asking price of $4 million. It is being sold by agent, Rose Basir, of Royal LePage Signature Realty in Toronto. According to the listing, the property is being sold by the mortgagee in possession under power of sale.
The site is 1701 and 1741 Wigamog Rd. in Dysart et al, comprising just over 40 acres of land and 13 structures.
CEO of the Aurora Group, Ravi Aurora, told The Highlander on Feb. 23, there was not much he could say because of an ongoing legal battle.
However, “it was not listed with our approval and it was not put up for sale by us,” he said. “We’re obviously not going to take this lightly. We’ve been on it since the day we noticed that it even came up because it was a surprise to us, too.
“All I can say is that we’ll have this all fixed in a short order of time, and then we will just pursue whatever legal avenues that we decide to go with for the repair of the situation.”
Aurora said he was hopeful of updating the community as of the week of March 1.
The Auroras purchased the Wigamog on March 3, 2016 announcing big plans for it, and the Pinestone, which they had purchased the previous year. They are also working towards a gas station, fast food outlet and convenience store on County Road 21 near the entrance to the Pinestone.
Their announced plans for the resort included reopening the inn and The Moose Bar and Grill. There was also talk of a new residential development, with 180-plus units of condos, townhouses and detached homes. However, to date, nothing has been done at the site.
Aurora said those plans have not changed but he admitted they have been slowed and it’s been a challenge and “COVID hasn’t helped.”
He added that the situation at the Wigamog had no bearing on operations at the Pinestone, which he confirmed had come under the Choice Hotels brand. He said they had spent $3 million there since taking it on, including roofs, the driveway, installing LED lighting, purchasing golf carts and updating golf equipment as well as new kitchen equipment. He said they next plan to renovate rooms.
He said they’ve had no return as of yet on that investment and ultimately, they need the revenue to drive their plans.
Informed about the listing last week, Dysart et al Mayor, Andrea Roberts, said in her opinion the sale is “good news.” “
I hope it does sell and that whoever buys it doesn’t just let it sit and fall into further disrepair. We need a developer that can remove the old buildings which will be very costly, and create something for that property that is realistic for Haliburton and fits the needs for our area,” she said.
Aurora acknowledged the Aurora Group also has some work to do in regaining the community’s trust.
“I know it’s going to be a tough battle to gain that confidence again but we are very determined … Our intentions are fully to complete and move forward with everything we have planned.”