Gold Seal Winery set to become mega-resort

Mary Perham
Gold Seal Winery in its heyday

Local officials gathered Saturday, Oct. 27, to celebrate what they hope will be a boost to the local tourism industry.

While plans are in the preliminary stage, new owners John and Linda Giglio hope to turn the old Gold Seal Winery into a one-of-a-kind resort on Keuka Lake.

Plans for the winery, its vast caverns and 23-acres of land are still fairly fluid, but initial plans include shops, restaurants, lodging, a separate Provence-styled villa, a spa and entertainment venues. Local wines will be sold and the area’s history will be highlighted through multi-media presentations.

Traffic to the resort will be diverted from State Route 54A west through the grounds to prevent congestion, the project’s chief architect John Lusk said.

“(The Giglios) want to be good neighbors,” he said. “They are respectful of this neighborhood.”

Summer residents on Keuka Lake for decades, the Giglios were driving to church a couple years ago when they passed the mammoth, vacant Gold Seal Winery and noticed it was for sale.  

The winery was built in 1865, and reportedly produced the only wine to ever win a California competition. It changed ownership several times during more recent decades, and was sold by Seagrams in 1984.

Linda Giglio said Saturday she had been looking for a place to turn into a meditation center, so the couple looked into buying the property, assessed at $340,000. Her husband gave it to her for her birthday, later recouping the cost by selling casks and barrels found on the premises.

Details about financing the extensive five-year development were not discussed, although John Giglio thanked Tom Tranter, of Corning Enterprises, and U.S. Rep Tom Reed, R-Corning for their help. A representative for Reed attended the event.

Plans call for the project to be completed in 2017.

An architecrt’s rendering of the proposed resort.