Check out what’s new in Downtown Huntsville!

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THIS BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT SHINES ON

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Businesses in downtown Huntsville are getting ready for their busiest time of the year, and they’ll soon be joined by some new neighbours—both familiar and fresh.

At the east end of Main Street, the Huntsville Brewhouse by Lake of Bays Brewery is slated to open this spring below street level next to the Muskoka Bicycle Pro Shop. They’ll be joining in the fun at the annual Muskoka 2/4 Craft Beer Festival on Saturday, May 19 in River Mill Park, too.

On the other side of the street, Living Wood will be moving from its Brunel Road location to the former McIroy Insurance building. Forest Hill Real Estate will move in next to That Little Place By The Lights, which just completed renovations and is now offering pizza al taglio and an Italian hot table or tavola caldo with a variety of dishes always ready instead of the menu service it has had in the past.

Just around the corner on Brunel, Lobster Girl has closed but across the street lawyer Brian Leggett has moved into the former Pinestead location and Empire Ink, a tattoo and piercing studio, has opened up shop next store.

Over on Brunel Road, lawyer Brian Leggett has moved into the former Pinestead location with Empire Ink next door. Living Wood, which is across the street, will be moving to 44 Main Street East

Over on Brunel Road, lawyer Brian Leggett has moved into the former Pinestead location with Empire Ink next door. Living Wood, which is across the street, will be moving to 44 Main Street East

In the centre of downtown, the former TD Bank location remains empty.

“That was a big loss to a lot of downtown merchants from an accessibility viewpoint, to be able to do deposits at the end of a busy day,” notes Helena Renwick, Downtown Huntsville BIA’s executive director. “They’ve been downtown forever. And now we’ve got this beautiful building that hopefully doesn’t sit empty for too long.” There’s no word on a possible future tenant or owner yet.

Another downtown mainstay, Treasures and Trophies, closed its doors earlier this year when owners Jim and Pam Allen retired, but Castle Antiques will be moving down the street to fill the gap.

Nearer to Centre Street, a new restaurant will add some life to a stretch of Main Street that’s been sitting empty for some time. Marigold Unique Flavour, an Indian restaurant, will be opening at 17 Main Street East. Renovations to the building are underway but an opening date hasn’t been announced.

A new Indian restaurant, Marigold Unique Flavour, is coming to 17 Main Street East

A new Indian restaurant, Marigold Unique Flavour, is coming to 17 Main Street East

The old Dominion store remains empty and although there are plans to redevelop the property, construction has not yet begun. Renwick says the BIA will continue to pressure the Town to ensure that, in the meantime, property standards are upheld at that location along with other vacant properties. “Part of the BIA mandate is beautification and we will ask the Town to uphold the property standards.”

On the other side of Centre Street, in the former location of The Brick, renovations are underway to create two small retail outlets facing Main Street. Lindgren Mini Storage will occupy the space at the back.

“One of issues we have downtown is size,” says Renwick, adding that small businesses looking for less space don’t have many options along Main Street. “Smaller storefronts are good for people just starting out and we’d like to see more of that happening.”

And just off Main Street, two professional services have moved in. The Aben Team real estate office has a new location at 13 Minerva Street East and a new banner under Harvey Kalles Real Estate. And law office Doughty and Doughty Barristers and Solicitors opened last month at 2 Caroline Street.

Businesses aren’t the only new things coming to downtown Huntsville this year, though. There are also two new festivals happening—Muskoka Veg Fest, a vegan festival on August 11, and the Macaroni Festival on September 15, a nod to the former Strano Macaroni Factory that once sat where the Algonquin Theatre is today.

Renwick says that the downtown merchants are looking forward to another great summer. “The businesses had a great summer last year—there were lots of people in town. They are very optimistic (for this year) and looking forward to the summer. Bring it on!”

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6 Comments

  1. For 15 years the potential of spring, summer, and fall added fire to the Stipanovich entrepreneurial spirit! Wishing all the current and future retailers and artisans tremendous results, a hot, sunny summer, and a fall that lures so many up to experience our beautiful town. Best always!

  2. Henk Rietveld on

    By the way, the new restaurant is located at 15 Main St. East. Doesn’t matter, any new blood to revitalize the remains of the Empire Block have got to be welcome.

  3. Bonnie Branton on

    Actually, TD Deposits uninterrupted.

    The Main St. ATM has remained in place.
    – and the North Kinton branch has oodles of parking & a drive thru’!
    Thank you TD!

  4. Bev Belanger on

    Really looking forward to culture coming to Huntsville! No more driving to TO for Indian food! Now, we could use some authentic Caribbean food.

  5. Catherine Clail on

    It’s very exciting, but I’m disappointed that I saw no mention of one other fine new restaurant in downtown Huntsville. The Artisan House at 21 West St. South replaces La Dolce Vita Trattoria. I believe they’ve already opened on a limited basis and I’m looking forward to trying their fresh local cuisine with a Swiss influence! The owner is Becki Steele. Info @ theartisanhouse.ca

  6. I don’t think more Real Estate offices on Main St. will help with our downtown revitalization. We need businesses that bring people to the downtown area for the pleasure of good shopping, eating or entertainment. Real Estate offices can go anywhere as they are mostly not walk-in businesses.

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