English River Inn is located on Umber Lake which is a small, pristine lake connected to the English River and Scotch River junction that flows north to Hudson Bay. The junction of English and Scotch Rivers at Umber Lake was known as a meeting place and in early years was the location of an Indian village. In 1935, Burt Brown rode the train to English River as his uncle had told him there was a small lake situated approximately halfway between the Lakehead (now Thunder Bay) and the Manitoba border that would be a wonderful location for a gas station-resort. It was also a moose hunting area with many fishing lakes nearby. It is still known for prime moose hunting and fishing. Burt spent several years there before the Second World War and returned afterward. The first motel, the Tartan Motel, opened in 1957 and by 1963 there was an Esso gas station, a restaurant, the motel and cabins which would accommodate 75 tourists.

In 1967, the resort was sold to the Al Meade family. The Tartan Motel burned in 1969, at which time the 14 unit English River Motel (now known as the English River Inn) was built on the present location. The motel changed hands several times. In May, 2008 Bruce and Lois Rypkema purchased the English River Inn and are fulfilling their dream of enjoying beautiful Canada all summer long. They are continually remodeling and updating their facilities so that you can enjoy the most modern conveniences found in any other chain motel. It has an outstanding view of Umber Lake and offers swimming, boating, fishing and hunting and not to be overlooked, wonderful hospitality. During your travels, it is their hope that you will stop by and spend a comfortable night at their “inn” and be refreshed again to hit the road in the morning for another day of driving or bicycling across scenic Northwestern Ontario.