Lacombe Mayor Steve Christie pledged to attract a new hotel to the city, and on Monday he was able to confirm that he’d delivered.
With a Stretch Construction Ltd. crew working in the background, Christie spoke enthusiastically about the impact the 83-room Best Western Plus Lacombe Inn & Suites will have on his community.
“Accommodation has always been an issue here in Lacombe,” he said.
“A lot times in the summer we have three weddings hosted in the (Lacombe Memorial Centre) the same night, and a lot of that accommodation business goes to Red Deer.”
The new hotel at 4751 63rd St. should keep many of those people in Lacombe, said Christie, where they’ll eat at local restaurants, shop at local stores and fuel up at local service stations.
Plus, he added, a major hotel could bring more meetings and other gatherings to the city.
“We’ll be able to attract more meetings, more functions that need both accommodation and facilities.”
That’s something the investors behind the hotel are counting on, said Jacquie Corkery, communications director for Best Western Plus Lacombe Inn & Suites. Studies suggested that the city is lacking facilities like the new hotel will offer, she said.
Valued at about $10 million, the four-storey hotel will contain a swimming pool and waterslide, a fitness room, a banquet room with seating for 180, and a boardroom that can accommodate 60.
“We feel those are needs that the community has,” said Corkery.
The units will include 10 long-stay rooms with full kitchens, and a pair of honeymoon suites. A proposed second phase could add a restaurant, she said.
Christie and Corkery acknowledged that Monday’s announcement was a long time coming.
The Michener Park site where the hotel is being built was originally earmarked for a police station, and it took about four years to arrange for the hotel to locate there.
“We had our sights set originally on a piece of property that was east of town,” said Corkery, adding that she’s pleased things turned out the way they did.
“It’s such a beautiful piece of Lacombe. It’s close to the highway. I think it’s the best situation that we could have.”
Best Western Plus Lacombe Inn & Suites, which will consist of about 60,000 square feet, is being developed by a group of investors, said Corkery. It’s expected to be completed by late next summer.
Meanwhile, an 8,800-square-foot commercial building is going up nearby. It will contain five bays, with Shantro Developments Ltd. the developer and Michael Gouchie the leasing agent.
It’s expected to be ready for use by next spring.