Thinking outside the box is exactly what makes Inner Joy Getaways our idea of a Grand Experience.
Imagine the convenience of a bed and breakfast, the amenities of a hotel, the privacy of a resort, with the natural landscape views of a riverside cabin – enjoyed in a fully renovated shipping container. Yes, you read that right. We invite you to book in for a unique travel accommodation destination on the banks of the Grand River.
Picture it: four individual shipping containers completely transformed into luxurious, all-season, private suites. Warm in winter and air conditioned for summer, the spacious framed interior measures 7ft wide by 39ft, with 8ft ceilings and plenty of natural light. Spaced out by ten feet, each suite has a privacy fence and gardens, creating a serene space for two.
Each unit features a queen-sized bed, with a premium Endy Sleep System mattress and memory foam pillows, so you can relax, rejuvenate and recharge. Prop up the pillows and enjoy a movie on the flat screen from the comfort of your bed.
The open concept living room and kitchenette features another TV, a live edge bar for dining, and the convenience of an induction cook stove, microwave, mini-fridge and a Keurig for your morning java. The full bathroom has everything you need including a walk-in shower.
Large sliding glass doors lead out to a stamped concrete patio that features a barbecue and outdoor dining area. But imagine the splendour of a starry night sky best enjoyed from comfort of a Sundance hot tub for two, complete with a waterfall. You won’t believe the night sky out here. It’s spectacular.
Nestled on just over 7 acres of groomed, rural land in the hamlet of Inverhaugh, Inner Joy Getaways is less than five minutes from the village of Elora and within 10 minutes of Fergus. Hosts Laura and Will Feenstra grew up in these towns. They know how special and serene the natural beauty of this region is and they chose this property, their “Green Valley,” to make their dreams a reality – to create an experience for visitors here to enjoy the tranquility of nature with the comfort of modern amenities.
Will’s carpentry and landscaping trade paired with Laura’s interior design skills have made this an esthetically beautiful retreat. They designed each container with a theme for the region.
The Elora suite incorporates the artistic vibe of the village, with artsy décor, contemporary fixtures and modern edges. Pieces by local artists add to the authenticity.
The Scottish heritage of the town of Fergus influences the décor of the suite that bears its name. Fans of the Outlander television series, based on the books by Diana Gabaldon, will recognize the use of Jamie Fraser’s tartan as an accent throughout. And if that’s not sweet enough for you, Laura has imported Chocolate Tree sweets from Scottish chocolatier, because, Jamie Fraser would approve!
The St. Jacobs suite incorporates the traditions of wood and metal décor, with oil-rubbed fixtures and antique pieces. The kitchen is stocked with locally sourced maple syrup and a Belgian waffles, in case you’re hungry.
Elmira is a pretty town not far from here and inspiration for the suite named for it comes from the Mennonite fabrics, with floral and nature patterns, finished with elements of brass accents. The pantry features Picard’s Peanuts, a tasty treat from a popular destination for visitors to Elmira.
Whichever suite you choose, Inner Joy Getaways is a self-catering accommodation. Upon arrival, you’ll find a bountiful basket of treats to welcome you with local flavours. If you’d like to stay in for your meals, there is a stainless steel barbecue available for each suite. Better still, make a reservation at one of the amazing restaurants in Elora or Fergus, and head out for a nice brunch, lunch or dinner on the town. Then head back to your room and enjoy a bottle of fine wine selected from one of the wineries in Ontario’s Niagara-on-the-Lake.
Inner Joy Getaways is intended to create an authentic relaxed experience, an escape from the hectic routine and a place to reconnect. (Don’t worry, they have Wifi so you can still check your social media, but only if you want too). This location is ideal for a romantic vacation or for small groups, like a girl’s weekend or a guy’s fishing weekend, (because the fly fishing starts literally steps from your door). As such, this is an adult-only venue. It’s pet-free too, because getting away from the kids should include the fur-babies.
Guests can enjoy a 6-hole chip’n putt golf course or play a tennis match on an authentic grass court. If you like to fish, this private location on the banks for the Grand River is ideal for fly-fishing. Nature on your doorstep and tranquility all around, you won’t find another place quite like this.
Reserve your suite online at www.innerjoygetaways.com. On your arrival date, you will be texted your keyless entry code and you’re good to go! Payment is made online too. Easy. Stress-free. A great way to relax into your holiday.
Inner Joy Getaways is an accommodation site like no other. Put this on your “places to stay” list. It’s a getaway without going far away – and yet, under the blanket of stars on any given night, it feels a world away from it all. That’s our idea of a Grand Experience.
For more details and to deal with Laura and Will directly, visit www.innerjoygetaways.com. Find them on Facebook and Instagram at @innerjoygetaways.
Get your motor running at the 22 annual Downtown Fergus Antique & Classic Car Show.
This is our idea of a PERFECT Friday night in downtown Fergus. Ready? It goes like this …
We jump in our ’67 Mustang, affectionately known as Ruby Tuesday. She’s a beauty, a classic fastback contour design, painted candy apple red, naturally, (not because it’s cliché, but because this is our fantasy and we believe it needs to be the glossiest red paint job on the planet). The polished silver racing rims glisten in the late afternoon sun. A tiny disco ball dangles from a silver thread off the rearview mirror. (It’s our fantasy, so no fuzzy dice here).
At a speed that is totally within the speed limit, (law abiding, because we love where we love), but in a car that sounds like it wants to rip up the pavement with so much horsepower under the hood that it should have wings, we throw it in gear and head to downtown Fergus for the 22 annual Downtown Antique & Classic Car Show.
We can picture it now. Classic cars of every colour, make and model you can hope for lining St. Patrick Street, angled to show their best features, (as if a classic car has a bad side), set out on display for all those who want to take a walk down memory lane – or motor lane, as they call it.
We register our classic beauty for a chance to win one of three prizes, because we know the judges are totally going to love our car. Who wouldn’t? We pull up alongside a crisp white ’63 split window Corvette. Hello Gorgeous! Just as we’re enjoying that view, a ’56 Ford Fairlane Convertible rides up beside us with a baby blue and white exterior original paint job and soft blue seats. Outstanding! We’re in good company here.
We put Ruby Tuesday in park, get out to give our beautiful car one last polish. It’s showtime!
Before we know it, the street is full of classic cars, antiques, and people are everywhere strolling with their friends and families, taking in the marvel that is a celebration of our love for the automobile. This is car heaven. We can’t help but be impressed of the caliber of classic and antique cars and the preservation it takes for these car owners. Pride is evident. And the crowds love it too, as they pass by in awe of these cars that take them to a place in their memory, a drive back in time.
To make it even more fun, live entertainment plays, the shops stay open late and friends gather together – and it’s all free. FREE! And because this is as much about cars as it is community, the organizers (the Fergus BIA) ask for non-perishable food donations as a contribution to the Centre Wellington Food Bank.
Ruby Tuesday may just be our fantasy car. So, let’s be honest – we’re going to pull up in our Toyota Matrix and stroll past all the dream machines at the 22nd annual Downtown Fergus Antique & Classic Car Show, because dreams have to start somewhere. And this show makes for an ideal Friday night in an ideal town. We’re pretty revved up about it!
As the sun slides behind the horizon at the end of a warm summer Wednesday evening, the buildings of downtown Fergus cast long shadows over the streets and people begin to gather along the paved path of the Riverwalk that winds behind the downtown shops, along the flowing waters of the Grand River.
That’s when you’ll hear it. Music. Guitars being tuned and microphones being tested, perhaps a few cymbal crashes or the shake of a tambourine. The small stage is set for big talent in a venue that is as uniquely charming as the venue itself. This free concert series offers an intimate gathering under the expanse of the summer night sky. This is Twilight at Templin Gardens.
The momentum builds as friends gather, neighbours and new comers emerge from pathways, streets and the bridges that lead to the Riverwalk, beckoned by the sound of music and the promise of a relaxed night out on the town, literally. How awesome is this?
Nestled near the historic limestone stairs that lead to the water is the beautifully manicured public grounds known as Templin Gardens. Art and nature are together in this place, abundant with flowers that scent the night air, and sculpture that adds to the scenery. The sound of the river flowing over the rocks below provides a relaxed background, just enough to set the mood.
The Handmade Market features the craftsmanship of local artisans, inviting the crowds to browse the merchandise, meet the artists and learn more about the community. There is so much talent here.
As the stars begin to twinkle, musicians take the stage and Twilight at Templin Gardens comes to life, bringing everyone together for this uniquely Fergus event.
This year’s lineup includes:
July 4 – Shannon Kingsbury
Singer-songwriter and harpist Shannon Kingsbury is a passionate member of Guelph Canada’s vibrant arts scene. As performer and composer, she has collaborated with renowned artists across various disciplines and genres. Kingsbury’s vibrant live shows have been presented at theatres, festivals and intimate venues including: Hillside Festival, Guelph Jazz Festival & Nuit Blanche, River Run Centre, Guelph Dance Festival and numerous galleries and museums across Ontario.
July 11 – Northland Rail Service
Northland Rail Service is a bluegrass trio with Dave Pike on lead vocals, banjo, and guitar, Keenan Reimer-Watts on fiddle, and Taylor Esch on the “middle” – a cello that he’s rebuilt to play like a bass. On stage, their energy is contagious as they tear through old-time and bluegrass classics and originals with glee. Their three-part harmonies round out the sound and harken back to the good old days. As seasoned live performers, they’ve toured across Canada, and performed at multiple festivals big and small.
July 18 – Callistro Trio
This folk trio is renowned in these parts for their beautiful three-part harmony, musicianship and lyrical interpretations of Canadiana folk, old standards and original music too, featuring the talents of Tricia Brubacher, Julie Corey and Peter Balka.
July 25 – Kaleb Nolan
August 1 – Nick Gush and Pam Davies
August 8 – Albannach
Don’t miss this chance to catch the renowned performance of Albannach, a dynamic group of performers with high energy that makes this Scottish band welcomed fan favourites in Fergus.
August 15 – Broadway Draws
Relax. Unwind. Kick back. Enjoy the show. It costs you nothing but time and this is the best way to spend your Wednesday nights with friends for the Twilight at Templin Gardens.
Who says the ghosts and ghouls only come out at night? Not us! Come to Downtown Fergus on Saturday, October 28 and see for yourself.
The Halloween Haunt Street Walk is a fabulous spooky tradition celebrated in the light of day, where the historic main street comes alive with fun and excitement for the whole family. And it’s FREE! So gather up the kids and dress them up in their favourite Halloween costumes. Hey! Dress up the whole family if you wish. The more the merrier! It’s all about the spirit (or spirits, as it were) of one of our favourite events of the season.
This event is FREE and brought to you by the Downtown Merchants of Fergus. Come have fun with us!
There is no such thing as a road less travelled here, because as much as we love our downtown streets and neighbourhood crescents, it’s our unpaved trails that connect us – to nature, to our communities and to a lifestyle that makes time for the things that matter. In a place as beautiful as this, you’ve got to get out and explore. It’s time never wasted.
The solitude seekers, cyclists and hikers, stroller, four-legged friends and nature lovers alike find their footing on more than 47kms of trails of the Elora Cataract Trailway. These protected trails are cultivated by dedicated volunteers who are doing their apart to ensure that the beauty that comes naturally to our place, remains integral to our space.
It’s hard to believe that in less than 5 minutes from any main street or neighbourhood, you can be totally immersed in nothing but nature right in our backyard, but feel as far away as your mind will wander.
The journey is as important as the destination, so pick your view. From expansive farm land, to horses grazing in a field, overlooking the winding Grand River from the pathways or bridges, to the canopy of a forest or the shores of Belwood Lake, there is a view waiting for you. And it’s free.
Take the paths most travelled. It’s worth it.
Check back here at a later date. We’ll be updating this post over time.