By Mark Cowling for Casa Grande Dispatch
The Pinal County seat may soon be home to a new microbrewery and other amenities in a project being developed by a new partnership.
The Windmill Winery is partnering with GreenTree Inns Hotel Management Group Inc., the new owner of the former Holiday Inn Express, to develop luxury cottages, a fourth wedding venue and microbrewery on what is now vacant farmland on the south side of Butte Avenue.
These new facilities — now being called The Lodging at The Windmill Winery and The Cotton Gin at The Windmill Winery — will expand The Windmill to both sides of the street and are expected to open in the fall of 2017.
The expansion will be directly across the street from The Windmill’s main entrance. Just as The Windmill’s historic Wisconsin dairy barn is the focal point on the north side of the street, the Cotton Gin will be the rustic central feature on the south side. Besides hosting weddings, it will include a microbrewery, restaurant, a multi-use room for events and space for shops.
Also part of this first phase will possibly be 17 single-story bungalow-style cottages. The main portion of each cottage will be 500SF, larger than a typical hotel room, which may connect through a locking door to a 350SF room. There will be both front and back porches. The bridal suite cottage will be 625SF with a fireplace.
The 10-acre lodge and cotton gin expansion will be lushly landscaped to match the existing Windmill property, including an orchard to celebrate the “5 C’s of Arizona” — cotton, citrus, copper, climate and cattle, said Windmill owner Harold Christ.
His architect is Swaback Partners of Scottsdale.
A future phase may include a 25-unit inn and an RV parking area. In all, The Windmill has 40 acres of what is currently farmland on which to expand on the south side of Butte Avenue.
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