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The Land

Grayhaven Motel stands on the traditional, ancestral, and contemporary lands of the Gayogo̱hó:nǫɁ Nation (the Cayuga Nation). The Gayogo̱hó:nǫɁ are one of the Six Nations of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, also known as the Iroquois Confederacy. This land was also home to the native nations adopted by the Gayogo̱hó:nǫɁ ; the Saponinis and the Tutelos. We acknowledge the painful history of Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫɁ dispossession, and recognize the ongoing connection of Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫɁ people, past and present, to these lands and waters.

Hosting Travelers Since 1919

Grayhaven is one of the oldest, and longest continually run hotels in Tompkins County. Property records go back to 1831 and include a string of farm land sales from 1850 to 1919, which is where our history with boarders begins.

Blanche and Percy Marion purchased the property in 1919, converting the second and third floors of their house (Main House) into small apartments for boarders. This was the beginning of Marion’s Tourist Home. During the Marion’s ownership the second floor of their barn (Carriage House) was also converted into boarding rooms, and a small duplex cottage (Westpoint Cottage) was added as well.

Grayhaven Motel is born

In 1952 the Marion’s sold the property to R. Curtis and Jewel Gray whom purchased the property with the express intention of converting it to a motel; owning their own motel had been a dream for some time. Soon after moving in they began converting the carriage house to motel rooms and the Grayhaven Motor Court was born. 

For 40 years the Grays successfully operated and expanded the motel, until their retirement in 1992. At this point the motel was taken over by their daughter, Kathy (Gray) Hildreth, and her husband Paul. Kathy continued to run the motel for 25 years as its sole proprietor, until her retirement and sale of the property in the fall of 2017. The motel was purchased by Paul’s niece, Alexis (Zaharis) Grimm, and her husband Mark.

Alexis and Mark are the current stewards of Grayhaven. They are slowly restoring the motel buildings to their former glory, while implementing new amenities that make for a more comfortable and sustainable stay. Preservation of an iconic roadside accommodation, period architecture, and most importantly the surrounding natural lands remain at the forefront of their mission. They are happy to offer a unique, safe, and friendly place for guests to enjoy all of the beauty that the Finger Lakes have to offer. 

Come Experience Our History

Book your stay and enjoy modern conveniences while stepping back in time at our historic motel!

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