The Courtyard by Marriott Nanaimo, a highly anticipated 172-key business-class hotel, has officially opened on the east coast of Vancouver Island in British Columbia. This new hotel positions the City of Nanaimo for further growth while also honouring the Snuneymuxw First Nation’s rich history, art, and culture.
Located at 100 Gordon Street adjacent to the Vancouver Island Conference Centre, the Courtyard by Marriott Nanaimo represents a significant collaborative effort between PEG, the Snuneymuxw First Nation, the City of Nanaimo, and other project partners including Omicron Construction.
Hotel Equities, which manages a portfolio of 250-plus hotels and resorts throughout the U.S. and Canada, now operates the property with hospitality veteran Paul Dodds serving as general manager. So far, 56 people have been hired to work in the hotel, many of whom are members of Snuneymuxw First Nation.
“The Vancouver Island market has been a focus of ours for quite some time and we look forward to having representation in this highly desirable destination,” said Ryan McRae, VP, business development, Hotel Equities. “We expect to continue our growth here and look forward to serving the community and the many visitors who travel here.”
PEG was selected to develop the hotel in 2017. The Utah-based firm broke ground in February 2020 just before the COVID-19 pandemic hit which later created many hurdles for the company to overcome including labor shortages, elevated construction costs, and travel restrictions.
“As the majority owner of the hotel, we celebrate the opportunity to share Snuneymuxw culture with visitors from all over the world while supporting the economic growth of our Nation and the local community,” says Chief Mike Wyse. “By investing in Nanaimo’s hospitality industry, we have created local jobs and established essential infrastructure that benefits a growing tourism sector.”
The new Marriott hotel will offer amenities including a street-level café, pool and fitness centre. Design features include angular windows with street side views, stone panels, and a façade of exterior colours allowing it to blend well within the environment and existing buildings in the area. Vancouver-based sustainable construction firm Nexii is expected to generate efficiencies in completing the buildout through its innovative construction methodology.
“With excitement, we welcome the very impressive Courtyard by Marriott; we know this hotel will help us grow our leisure and business tourism markets in a big way,” said Nanaimo Mayor Leonard Krog.
With several convention centre-related bookings in place, hotel operations are off to a strong start. PEG plans to host a community-wide ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate construction completion this May.