By Mike Williscraft
The business anchor of Main Street Jordan – Inn on The Twenty – has been sold.
Vintage Inns, which operates many of the finest facilities in the province including Niagara-on-the-Lake’s Prince of Wales, Queen’s Landing and Pillar and Post, is now the owner.
The sale price was not disclosed.
Len Pennachetti said Tuesday, just after the sale closed, that he is very happy with the fit Vintage Inns will bring to the community and he stressed, he and his winery operation, Cave Springs Cellars, aren’t going anywhere.
“Vintage Inns has acquired all the real estate we had in Jordan including the winery building. We have leased it back for a very long term, so we’re planning on sticking around for a very long time,” said Pennachetti.
The sale also included the Jordan House.
Noting that the whole process took more than a year, Pennachetti said a great deal of thought went into the sale.
“It was not simple. We wanted to look for the right partner, a good fit, and we’re confident we’re making the right choice,” he said.
A big part of the care involved in the sale was the future of the operation’s 150 full- and part-time employees.
“That was a big consideration for us,” said Pennachetti.
The inn and restaurant were trail blazers coming into a wine industry which has evolved rapidly. The Inn on The Twenty opened in 1993 it was the first winery restaurant in Canada.
“The whole thing was to support the winery business, but it became equal in size and demanded a lot of time,” said Pennachetti, noting when he bought the Main Street building he had to figure out how to fill its 80,000 sq. ft. of space.
“The business grew organically. We were happy to invest in it and it worked out well for us.”
As for the new owner, he said Vintage Inns’, presence assures a bright future for the operation and downtown Jordan.
“We have known and worked with these people for many years through the board of directors of Ontario’s Finest Inns of which my wife Helen was the chair for many years, and we have supplied wine to them as well,” said Pennachetti.
“We are very aware of their overall strategic plan and we know the ownership group. They recognize having the winery as part of the inn is the secret sauce here. It’s unique. Based on their track record, Vintage Inns is a great fit.”