Thanks for visiting our website and for your interest in our properties!
We are Thomas & Alixandrea Dowson. We live in Sydney, Cape Breton with our two boys Jack & Levi and our dog Rogue! We have recently moved back to Cape Breton after 11 years in Fort McMurray, AB. Thomas and I met out west in 2010, married in 2016 and still both have careers in the oil sands, where we operate and manage some of the biggest equipment in the world. We purchased "The Cedar" from my grandfather in 2013, when he unexpectedly had to sell the property. At the time, a vacation home was not on our radar and seemed far out of reach. However, when we found out my grandfathers cottage which was the gathering spot for my family for many years was about to go on the market, we made the decision to do whatever we could to keep in the family.
After a couple years of the cottage being mostly vacant, we decided we needed to share it with others.I had heard about Airbnb, which was becoming increasingly popular and hoped that with a lot of help from family and some hard work, maybe it could be a success. At the time, the property had no water access and the view was minimal; the bank along the property was mostly treed. This place was as special a place to my father as it was to me and the creative ideas began to flow. He had the idea of pulling the bank back from the edge of the river and gradually sloping the property towards the water, to create water access and an area to build a large deck. This was an extensive job and a large expense, but made all the difference in the property.
We listed the cottage on airbnb in 2018 and named it "Our Little Paradise". We were overwhelmed with interest and our calendar quickly booked up, but we had no idea how we would manage and run a short term rental from the other side of the country. I honestly don't know what I would have done without the help of my family, especially my dad. He maintained the property and was always on call if there was an issue. For the first few summers, my grandmother even did the cleaning for us! In true Cape Breton fashion, It really was a family affair. Each year we picked away at things, making improvements here and there and doing what we could to help bring our vision for the property to life and in the process trying to create something special for our guests. We quickly became Airbnb "Superhosts" and now have over 100, 5 star reviews and counting.
Our first son Jack was born in 2019. That was the beginning of when we realized that we wanted our son (and any other future children), to grow up closer to our family. Because of that desire and the isolation that was felt by so many during the pandemic, we sold our home in Fort McMurray and moved home to Cape Breton. We decided that we would set up roots in my home town and give the commuting life a go (For those of you not familiar with the term, that meant that Thomas and I would travel across the country to work in Alberta, and live at home in Cape Breton). Since arriving, we have welcomed a second baby boy into our family and were fortunate enough to be able to purchase the property next door, which we have named "The Pine"; it will be open in spring 2023. With this second home coming into the fold, we rebranded and changed the name that describes both of our properties to "Mira Riverfront Getaway".
It is our mission to not just be a place where you go to lay your head, but rather be a place that our guests come to enjoy an experience. A place where they can go to get away from it all and spend quality time together; where it feels like home. A place that they can't wait to return to. We try to anticipate our guests needs and provide everything they may require for a memorable, effortless and comfortable stay.