Sylvan Lake’s Best Western Plus Chateau Inn on Lakeshore Drive has applied to the town to convert to apartments. Photo from Best Western Plus Chateau Inn Facebook page

Sylvan Lake’s Best Western Plus Chateau Inn on Lakeshore Drive has applied to the town to convert to apartments. Photo from Best Western Plus Chateau Inn Facebook page

Sylvan Lake hotel eyeing apartment conversion to cope with economic downturn

Oil and gas industry struggles and pandemic made hotel unprofitable

Hit hard by the province’s economic downturn, another Sylvan Lake hotel is looking to convert rental rooms into apartments.

Best Western Plus Chateau Inn at 5027 Lakeshore Drive has applied to turn 72 guest rooms into 57 apartment suites in a $2 million project. Forty-two studio units, nine one-bedroom apartments and six handicapped accessible one-bedroom units are proposed.

The ground floor, where a restaurant, breakfast lounge, business centre, exercise room and pool are now located, would be converted into retail commercial space, according to an application that was going to the town’s municipal planning commission on Monday.

Best Western’s move is being made because of the sluggish economy, says a letter from owners Chateau Inn Ltd. to the planning commission. Chateau Inn Limited owns the nearby Chateau Inn Suites.

“Due to the economic downturn, specifically the oil and gas sector in central Alberta, the hotel has not been economically viable for the past number of years,” says the letter.

“The situation is further exasperated with the COVID-19 pandemic reducing the normal tourist visits in the summer.

“The continual business loss is not sustainable.”

The hotel was opened in 2011 and has a prominent location near the town’s downtown. The ground floor will be converted into three or four commercial units and a private landscaped outdoor space will be created for building tenants.

Little will change in the building’s appearance along Lakeshore Drive. The conversion will “positively enhance the pedestrian experience on Lakeshore Drive,” say the developers.

In a report to the planning commission, senior planner Kim Devlin recommended approval of Chateau Inn’s plans, noting that the town’s Sustainable Waterfront Area Redevelopment plan promotes mixed-use development in the lakeshore area that will encourage more commercial development and year-round activity.

This is the second Sylvan Lake hotel that has responding to the economic environment by converting to apartments.

Lost Harbour Inn, at 5312 Lakeshore Drive, was given approval last June to convert its 28 hotel units into 16 apartments. Nine two-bedroom suites and seven one-bedroom units were approved.

In Red Deer last summer, work began to convert about half of the Baymont by Wyndham hotel, formerly the Red Deer Lodge, into apartment units.

The plan is to keep 125 hotel rooms in the courtyard on the western side of the building while creating 109 rental suites in the east tower — 103 bachelor and six one-bedroom units.

Co-owner Shaz Bharwani told Red Deer’s municipal planning commission that because of the slowdown in the tourism industry there was no need for so many hotel rooms.



News tips

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

People lineup at a hotel for the homeless before the 8 p.m. COVID-19 curfew on Jan. 11, 2021, in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Legault nixes call for COVID-19 curfew exemption, saying it could used to avoid fines

Legault nixes call for COVID-19 curfew exemption, saying it could used to avoid fines

The body of 25-year-old Kyler Corriveau was discovered near Red Deer on Sunday. He was missing since Dec. 15. Police are investigating his death as a homicide. (Contrinuted photo).
RCMP are investigating the death of missing Red Deer man as a homicide

The body of Kyler Corriveau was discovered on Sunday

Alberta’s chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw reported 456 new cases of COVID-19 over Tuesday afternoon. (photography by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
Five new COVID-19 deaths in Central zone, two in Red Deer

Province reports 456 new cases of COVID-19

Community Futures Central Alberta, in partnership with the Central Alberta Regional Innovation Network (CARIN), is behind the SMARTstart initiative for budding entrepreneurs.
New program aimed at helping entrepreneurs succeed

Program offers mentorship, business advice and networking opportunities

A Red Deer man, who has been declared a dangerous offender, lost his appeal of an aggravated assault conviction from 2017. Advocate file photo
Red Deer man who chomped on remand centre inmate’s ear loses aggravated assault appeal

Inmate lost part of his ear in attack at Red Deer Remand Centre in August 2017

Justin Kripps of Summerland and his team have competed in Olympic action and World Cup competitions in bobsleigh. (Jason Ransom-Canadian Olympic Comittee).
QUIZ: Are you ready for some winter sports?

It’s cold outside, but there are plenty of recreation opportunities in the winter months

FILE - John Mulaney arrives at night one of the Creative Arts Emmy Awards on Sept. 14, 2019, in Los Angeles. A file obtained by The Associated Press shows the U.S. Secret Service investigated John Mulaney, but found no wrongdoing in a joke the comedian made on “Saturday Night Live” in February 2020. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP, File)
File details investigation into John Mulaney ‘SNL’ monologue

File details investigation into John Mulaney ‘SNL’ monologue

FILE - In this Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2017, file photo, Tom Hanks arrives at the People's Choice Awards at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. Hanks will host a 90-minute primetime TV special celebrating the inauguration of Joe Biden as president of the United States. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File)
From Gaga to Garth, Miranda to Moreno: Celebs join inaugural

Like so much this past year, the inaugural celebration will be like… Continue reading

A Honduran migrant poses for a photo at a road block manned by Guatemalan soldiers and police, on the highway in Vado Hondo, Guatemala, Monday, Jan. 18, 2021. Some migrants threw rocks while authorities launched tear gas and pushed the migrants with their riot shields back down the highway. (AP Photo/Sandra Sebastian)
Large migrant caravan dissolves in Guatemala

Large migrant caravan dissolves in Guatemala

FILE - In this May 2, 2020, file photo, Erika Bermudez becomes emotional as she leans over the grave of her mother, Eudiana Smith, at Bayview Cemetery in Jersey City, N.J., Bermudez was not allowed to approach the gravesite until cemetery workers had buried her mother, who died of COVID-19. Other members of the family and friends stayed in their cars. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)
‘Shameful’: US virus deaths top 400K as Trump leaves office

‘Shameful’: US virus deaths top 400K as Trump leaves office

Riot shields are stacked at the ready as National Guard troops reinforce the security zone on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2021, before President-elect Joe Biden is sworn in as the 46th president on Wednesday. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
2 Guard members made extremist statements about inauguration

2 Guard members made extremist statements about inauguration

In this Jan. 6, 2021, photo, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky., walks from the Senate floor to his office on Capitol Hill in Washington. Now that the House has impeached President Donald Trump for the second time, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi must figure out the best strategy for arguing the case before the Senate. Senate rules say the trial must start soon after the chamber receives the article of impeachment, which cites “incitement of insurrection” after an angry mob of Trump’s supporters invaded the Capitol last week. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)
McConnell: Trump ‘provoked’ Capitol siege, mob was fed lies

McConnell: Trump ‘provoked’ Capitol siege, mob was fed lies

Biden marks nation’s Covid grief before inauguration pomp

Biden marks nation’s Covid grief before inauguration pomp

An empty Peel and Sainte-Catherine street is shown in Montreal, Saturday, Jan. 9, 2021, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
Poll finds strong support for COVID-19 curfews despite doubts about effectiveness

Poll finds strong support for COVID-19 curfews despite doubts about effectiveness

Most Read