Once upon a time, in a land just far enough away there was a home, a business and a family. Monda was the daughter of Peter and Hazel Mask who were some of the first business owners in the area that is now known as the township of South Algonquin. Peter was a blacksmith, Hazel was an entrepreneur & home maker. Together they raised a family of 6 while at the same time providing the residents of Whitney with some of the first businesses to the area. They owned and operated the original general store, grainery, black smith shop, accommodations, stables and one room school house, where Monda's pet deer Skippy attended classes regularly with the many local children. Monda grew up in a household bustling with business. Monda may have been in the family business, but the family business was also in her.
Fast forward, Monda was now in her 20's and married to Emil. After the passing of her parents, Monda inherited the original homestead, Bellwood Inn. Being a young couple with a young family and a home of there own Bellwood started to deteriorate. Instead of watching her childhood home fall apart, Monda and Emil took it upon themselves to save the historic building. With little more than their skills, ingenuity and hard work, lots of hard work, they built a new dream. Brick by brick they created a generational business so that the future would be bright for those that came after them.
Emil, an electrician by trade, has skills extending over the entire construction spectrum. The work started slow with Emil shoring up the foundation, fixing the electrical and plumbing while Monda opened and operated many more business’s there including but not limited to a tea room and pizza place all while continuing to run the original accommodation business her mother started, Bellwood Inn.
After creating a success out of Bellwood Inn and after providing accommodations for people from all over the world, Monda and Emil decided to expand. At 65 years old, instead of retiring they would build the Dream Catcher Motel.
Since then, Bellwood Inn and the Algonquin Dream Catcher Motel have been providing guests with clean, quiet, comfortable and affordable accommodations. The Dream Catcher Motel is both the newest accommodation to the Whitney area, and the closest accommodation to Ontario's most famous national park. It’s located just minutes away from both the east gate of Algonquin Park and the town of Whitney.
In 2009, Monda and Emil’s youngest son Andrew came on board to help with the business. Andrew is a certified carpenter and a licensed electrician in his own right. Andrews skills would become almost as valuable as his fathers in finishing the Dream Catcher Motel and completing his mothers dream of restoring Bellwood Inn to its former glory.
Andrew may be a skilled tradesman but like his mother and grandmother his passion was always for business. An entrepreneur at heart who also had a strong background in business and marketing. Andrew created his first business at only 12 years old followed by a very successful disk jockey business at only 16 years old, by age 18 Andrew had 5 employees working for him and strong clientele.
After 10 years as a profession DJ and after providing the music entertainment for over 1000 weddings Andrew was ready for a change. He purchased and rebuilt a rental complex in the city and made the move to helping his parents with the Dream Catcher Motel. Together with his beautiful wife Ashley, they made the move up to South Algonquin and purchased a home. Andrew and Ashley built the Inside Out Cabin and are now their family's 6th generation living in South Algonquin, the 3th generation operating Bellwood Inn and the second generation operating the Dream Catcher Motel.
Andrew, now having taken over full operations at Dream Catcher Accommodations is taking new ground for the business by building the Algonquin Wilderness Lodge across the road from the Dream Catcher Motel. Opening "when its ready" its going to be another gem of the area, nestles among the tall pines of Airy Rd.
"We’re excited to live here, to be expanding and to be continuing in the tradition our family started over 90 years ago. We look forward to seeing our many repeat customers each year and our new ones as-well” Andrew Michel
In late 2018, We purchased the Rolling Rapids Motel. it's a cozy older motel thats located on the shores of the breathtaking Madawaska river. Work has already begun to bring it up to the standards of our other locations. Stage one started off with a fresh paint job and color change to the whole outside of the building, New paint on the doors and windows. Furniture and bedding upgrades in the rooms, new Muskoka chairs to better enjoy the river with and a detailed cleaning and disinfecting of all surfaces in the building as well as a variety of smaller subtle changes to enhance the look and feel of the place such as High efficiency, pure white LED light bulbs, Satellite TV, High Speed Internet and more.
Here we grow again! In July of 2019, Andrew and Ashley purchased the East Gate Motel from David Kay and Dianne Tansley-Kay upon their retirement. It's now part of our Algonquin Accommodations line up of business's.
We want to extent a deep thank you to David and Dianne for all their hard work over the last 30+ years owning and operating the Algonquin East Gate Motel. We have heard from many customers what a wonderful job they did at providing clean, comfortable and affordable accommodation to people from all over the world. The South Algonquin community appreciates their contributions with employment to the area as well as the positive atmosphere they created! We want to wish them congratulations on their retirement. It's well deserved for a job well done! Thank you guys!
But don't worry, you will still be seeing them around. You may see Dianne helping out in the office from time to time and we have partnered with David to hang his beautiful paintings in all of our rooms across all our locations! They will be for sale, so keep an eye out! Don't forget to check out David's new art gallery opening on the river up near the grocery store! Stay tuned for more!
The End......ok, not really, this is just the beginning. Come visit us to support employment in our small community and to see whats next on our journey!
Whether you’re looking to spend a day, a week or more in Algonquin Park, The Algonquin Dream Catcher Motel is your best choice for value, cleanliness and comfort. Enjoy your stay with us as you experience this cradle of nature in this modern motel that was a dream before it was a business.
Many thanks to our guests from Germany, Netherlands (who were our first guests), France, Italy, Britain, Ireland, Scotland, Denmark, Spain, Portugal, Austria, Asia, USA, Canada, Israel, North and South Korea, Japan, and South America just to name a few.