Exploring Hastings County Day 3 - Black River Retreat

It was pouring rain as I drove to Tweed, but the weather did not hinder my excited anticipation of the scenery and business acumen I was destined to enjoy that morning.

 As my GPS announced that I had reached my destination, I was in this tiny lane in the woods, surrounded only by trees and water. A cleverly positioned but understated sign discretely indicated that I was at Black River Retreat (BRR). Oh, how I wished I was there to stay.

 This relaxation sanctuary is nestled in the forest and maximizes guests’ therapeutic nature immersion. While a romantic hideaway for couples, the retreat is an ideal place for weddings, honeymooners, bachelorette weekends and special events.

 The owner and operator Trevor Telford,was inspired by a change in direction in his life path, which led him to build the Black River Retreat himself over a period of one and half years. Using his experience and knowledge, he applied all his skills as a general contractor, designer and master persnickety customer care expert. Trevor worked hard to bring his dream destination into life, and is relentlessly looking for ways to develop and improve his concept and offering.

 “Keeping the business manageable for me means providing intimate getaways catering to just one couple at a time; although two extra guest rooms are available if you wish to share the experience with friends. This enables me to pay great attention to detail and ultimately craft a memorable experience for our guests”, says Trevor, while accurately ironing fresh bed linens.   

“The great attention to every single little detail is what makes BRR unique, nothing is overlooked” reads a comment left by one of the guests. What I had noticed right away as soon as I stepped in was that nature did not stop at the front door, but continued seamlessly inside as well. The presence of logs, branches and leaves in the resort’s décor makes the place tranquil and soothing. This is a place where time stops to allow for love to take over; it feels just like you are in a fairy tale.

 “People have so little time to get away, it is my responsibility, privilege and honour to give them something new and remarkable”, Trevor adds while he is making beds with care and precision.

 The BRR is open all year-round, and the winter months allow for snowshoeing on the trails followed by a dip in the hot tub, with a cozy fire surrounded by the charming winter wonderland.

 Trevor’s tips for business success

  1. Follow your passion. “This place is everything I love: building, designing, entertaining and cooking. I bring smiles, and offer a venue perfect for making memorable experiences.”
  2. Keep believing that you have the right product or service and do not get discouraged.
  3. Have a vision and never stop dreaming.
  4. Find the right people to share your vision with.
  5. Always keep improving. Strive to be better and finding ways to improve.
  6. Have a desire for excellence and go the extra mile.
  7. Use the business resources available, including at the various government levels. “Knowing that everyone was there to support me if and when I needed help along the way, gave me more confidence and awareness that I was not lost in the shuffle, because I mattered. Everybody really cares in this community and they are interested in what you are doing. I felt much support along the way”.


If you want to learn more about Black River Retreat, click here