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The 8-acre woolen mill complex that sits alongside the Mill Race canal was once the industrial center of the village of Amana. Textiles were essential to Amana’s beginnings. In addition to producing goods for the community’s use, the Mill helped support the colonists’ communal living by selling textiles across the country, gaining a national reputation for superior woolens. Rich traditions of enduring quality, uncompromising craftsmanship, community living, and genuine hospitality have continued within its walls since 1855.

As Iowa’s only remaining textile mill, we believe in the importance of preserving the talent and ideas of American manufacturing. Production keeps our community strong. To this day, our makers continue to produce woven goods with the same set of standards in the original century and a half old building where it all began.

Over time, changes in the textile industry and downsizing left many of the buildings empty or under-utilized. Steps needed to be taken to preserve the physical structures and rich history of the mill complex. Without a plan to rejuvenate the site, a critical part of the Amana story and an Iowa treasure may be lost.

The Long Story

The Amana Society, owner of Hotel Millwright, engaged third-party firms to find the potential “best uses” for the complex. The firm conducted a feasibility study to examine the existing market and analyze, based on reasonable assumptions, what the market would support, focusing on those uses that were economically sustainable. The study found that the “best use” of the site, as a whole, is a multi-use approach that enhances Amana’s position as a hospitality and entertainment destination.

The Short Story

We needed something cool that people would enjoy! So, we decided to open a boutique hotel with our customers’ needs and wants in mind.

We’re glad you’re here. This is going to be pretty special.


Discover more about the history of the mill:

Eco Cool

The Hotel Millwright complex was thoughtfully designed with sustainability in mind. From permeable paver streetscapes for stormwater runoff filtration to 100% green electricity provided by the Amana Farms methane digester, we’re working hard to build an eco-conscious oasis with as little disruption to Mother Earth as possible. And that’s just the beginning.