Monday, August 11, 2014

Hotel Won't Solve VICC Vacancy

Mayor Ruttan At Hotel Ribbon Cutting
Thinks Hotel Will Help Convention Business

Last week there was a ceremonial ribbon cutting on the site of the downtown hotel adjacent the conference centre.

In his address to the crowd, Mayor Ruttan suggested the new hotel could help solve the conference centre woes. It would appear city hall still does not have a firm grasp on what the issues are with our conference centre if they think this hotel will make any real difference.

Unless a hotel is built specifically to service the convention business (and this one isn't) they are not about to turn away their core business to accommodate the occasional convention at the VICC. We have been told all along that a lack of quality rooms downtown is the only thing keeping us from booking those large conventions. Really? Perhaps it has far more to do with the convention business and our location than hotel space.

If the operators of the new hotel are successful with their plans to bring 70,000+ Asian tourists to their hotel each year, it is difficult to see how they would have many, if any, vacant rooms to make available for conventions.

Mr. Chen of the SSS Manhao International Tourist Group is quoted in the Daily as saying: "We're investing in a hotel here because we want to bring more Chinese quests here, and to serve them in our Chinese language". You will note he says nothing about cashing in on the booming convention business at the VICC.

Remember the reason for giving up $10,000,000 in taxes was on the pretext it would boost our ailing convention business. Another sound decision from your city hall?



  1. I understand that the owners of the new hotel were given the option to run the VICC, and they turned down that option.
    You are 100% correct, the new hotel will not solve the woes of the conference Centre.

  2. So....let's make sure we do not re-elect this Mayor, as his claim to snagging another term in office is making a new hotel a reality (to boost convention centre biz! Ha) and to have everyone heading to Van (or swelling Nanaimo's density) with a fast ferry.

    Wow, not many claims to fame to get a third term as Mayor.


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