It’s a day before opening and a last-minute rush is going on at Revelstoke’s new Best Western Plus Hotel. The credit card machine is being fixed, the rooms are being double-checked and final staff training is being conducted.
“We’re super excited,” said general manager Brady Beruschi Wednesday afternoon, hours from the hotel’s Feb. 17 opening. “It still doesn’t seem like it’s there yet. We have all these details we’re finishing up.”
Rest assured, the hotel is ready to go, and just in time for the busy Alberta long-weekend and U.S. President’s Day weekend.
It’s two months behind schedule but it looks great. Walking in the Laforme Boulevard entrance of the 87-room hotel, one is greeted by a grand lobby with a seven-metre high ceiling. To the left is the front desk and to the right is a seating area with a fireplace, several leather couches and a stone “chimney” that stretches up to the ceiling.
Heading out of the hallway, one reaches the lounge and breakfast area. On one side is a counter with toasters, coffee machines and more. On the other, a long bar, with a granite top and base made from custom-wood ends from Downie Timber, lines one side.
“Usually they only send these to Japan but they were good enough to send some to us as well,” said project manager Michael Hoffman.
The coffee is also local, supplied by Stoke Roasted. “Connor supplied a grinder so it will smell like coffee throughout the lobby,” said Beruschi.
That’s just a smattering of the local work put into the hotel since ground was broken on Mar. 7, 2010. The concrete, framing and finished carpentry was done by Vic Van Isle; Canyon Electrical and Burridge’s Electrical did all the wiring; Hungwell Drywall put up the dry wall; Clearview computers set up the network … the list goes on. The photographs throughout the hotel are all courtesy Rob Buchanan.
Leaving the breakfast area down another hallway is the fitness room, with elliptical trainer, treadmill, bicycle, weights and more. Outside, there will be two hot tubs and a swimming pool – though those won’t be ready until the spring.
There are 12 rooms on the ground floor of the hotel, with 25 more on each of the upper three floors. Most of the rooms have two queen-sized beds, while 25 have king-sized beds with a hide-a-bed; and there are two executive suites. Eleven rooms have handicap access.
“There’s a lack of accessible accommodation in Revelstoke for someone in a wheelchair so we tried to make it accommodating to them,” said Beruschi.
Each room is about 350-40 square feet, said Hoffman; and all are outfitted with a small fridge, microwave, coffee maker and wall-mounted 42″ flat screen television. The price will be $159 at first but will go up to $199-229 once everything is finished up and all the kinks worked up, said Beruschi.
The hotel was designed CEI Archicture in Kelowna, with the idea of creating a simple, contemporary look that incorporates the natural elements of Revelstoke, said Beruschi.
They had to adhere to Best Western’s standards but were allowed some creativity within them, said Hoffman.
Beruschi said the hotel has been in the planning since the early-’80s and is the first major hotel to open in town since the Hillcrest.
“This has been a project we’ve all talked about for years,” he said. “There was a need for a nice, new hotel in Revelstoke. We’ll see if there’s demand but there was a need.”